Erryn reviews ‘Heroes for Ghosts’ by Jackie North. The ebook was published July 13 2018 and is 250 pages. The audiobook was narrated by Greg Boudreaux. It was released November 18, 2020 and is 6 hrs and 38 mins long. A copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.
Why I read this book: I am always game to try a new author and I adore Greg Boudreaux.
Soul mates across time. A sacrifice that could keep them apart forever.
In present day, near the village of Ornes, France, Devon works on his master’s thesis in history as he fantasizes about meeting a WWI American Doughboy.
In 1917, during the Battle of Ornes, Stanley is a young soldier facing the horrors of the battlefield.
Mourning the death of his friends from enemy fire, Stanley volunteers to bring the message for retreat so he can save everyone else in his battalion. While on his mission, mustard gas surrounds Stanley, and though he thinks he is dying, he finds himself in a peaceful green meadow where he literally trips over Devon.
Devon doesn’t believe Stanley is who he says he is, a soldier from WWI. But a powerful attraction grows between them, and if Stanley is truly a visitor from the past, then he is Devon’s dream come true. The problem is, Stanley’s soul wants to finish his mission, and time keeps yanking him back to relive his fateful last morning over and over, even as his heart and body long to stay with Devon.
Will Stanley have to choose between Devon and saving his battalion? Will time betray their love, leaving each alone?
A male/male time-travel romance, complete with hurt/comfort, French coffee, warm blankets, fireplace kisses, the angst of separation, and true love across time.
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I’m always intrigued by romances that have ghosts. I have two overriding questions that stick with me throughout the read – will the ghost come back to life and will the story have a happy ending? Jackie North’s book had the added layer of time travel. Will one of the men settle in a time that is not his own and what are the ramifications of that?
This book was really creative and hit a bunch of high notes with me. Good storytelling, compelling characters, a wonderful narrative, and a tale that kept me riveted from beginning to end. I couldn’t get through it fast enough, and yet I never wanted it to end. It also helped my curiosity that I had family who served in World War II. Of course Stanley, the soldier/ghost, finds it hard to fathom that there’s another war.
Back to the story, I also enjoyed that it was set in France. Many men died on those battlefields and they never came home. My family were amongst the lucky ones – all our men returned. But they came back with scars – emotional and physical – that lasted their entire lives. War is always catastrophic. A lesson we seem to never quite learn.
I loved this book. It will stay with me for a long time to come. I’ll also mention the narrator, Greg Boudreaux. He always delivers a great performance and he did for this book as well. I definitely recommend this audio.
10/10 Pots of Gold (100% Recommended) – Compares to 5/5 Stars
Jackie North has been writing stories since grade school and her dream was to someday leave her corporate day job behind and travel the world. She also wanted to put her English degree to good use and write romance novels, because for years she’s had a never-ending movie of made-up love stories in her head that simply wouldn’t leave her alone.
Luckily, she discovered m/m romance and decided that men falling in love with other men was exactly what she wanted to write about. In this dazzling new world, she turned her grocery-store romance ideas around and is now putting them to paper as fast as her fingers can type. She creates characters who are a bit flawed and broken, who find themselves on the edge of society, and maybe a few who are a little bit lost, but who all deserve a happily ever after. (And she makes sure they get it!)
She likes long walks on the beach, the smell of lavender and rainstorms, and enjoys sleeping in on snowy mornings. She is especially fond of pizza and beer and, when time allows, long road trips with soda fountain drinks and rock and roll music. In her heart, there is peace to be found everywhere, but since in the real world this isn’t always true, Jackie writes for love.