Against The Tide by Elizabeth Camden Bethany House ISBN978-0-7642-1023

By the time Lydia was nine years old she could speak Italian, Greek, Turkish and Croatian, but not English. She had never gone to school because she and her family had lived on various boats, surviving by fishing. By 1876 the family was living in Boston and Lydia’s wish to attend school was finally granted. Against the Tide, by Elizabeth Camden, is the story of a remarkable child who matures into an extraordinary woman.
A tragedy leads to Lydia’s placement in an orphanage. Eventually, due to her skill with languages, she finds employment with the US Navy as a translator. She lives a tidy and orderly life. This changes once she meets her employer’s associate, Alexander Banebridge (also known as Bane). Bane is a man on a mission to stop the opium trade. Because he is in need of a translator he hires Lydia to translate documents. He has convinced himself there is no room for romance in his life and Lydia finds him to be arrogant. He needs her services and she needs the money he pays her. Over time Lydia wants to become a part of seemingly unattainable Bane’s life. When Bane’s nemesis commits a vile act he turns to Lydia for help. She agrees to assist him and as a result she comes to face the challenges of a lifetime.
Lydia and Bane each thought they knew what they wanted for themselves, but then they met each other. Reluctant at first, they each took emotional risks. While the story is about opium it is also about courage and determination. The author has skillfully developed interesting characters who often surprise the reader. Bad things happen and the suspense level is high which makes for a fast moving and highly readable novel. I found this to be a well crafted story.
I received this book free of charge and I give this review of my own free will.

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