Shadows of the White City
Series: The Windy City Saga #2
Published by Bethany House Publishers
Publication Date February 2, 2021
Genres: Historical Fiction, Christian Fiction, Clean Romance
Setting: Illinois Gilded Age – US – 1875 – 1900
Main Character Ages: 35-60
Written for: Adults
She promised a dying father she would keep his daughter safe.
She can't fail now.
The one thing Sylvie Townsend wants most is what she feared she would never have--a family of her own. But taking in Polish immigrant Rose Dabrowski to raise and love quells those fears--until seventeen-year-old Rose goes missing at the World's Fair, and Sylvie's life unravels.
With nowhere else to turn, Sylvie seeks help from her boarder and Rose's violin instructor, Kristof Bartok. Fluent in several languages, his skills are vital to helping Sylvie navigate the immigrant and international communities where their investigation leads.
From the glittering architecture of the Fair to the dark houses of Chicago's poorest neighborhoods, they're taken on a search that points to Rose's long-lost family. Is Sylvie willing to let the girl go? And as Kristof and Sylvie grow closer, can she reconcile her craving for control with her yearning to belong?
I would like to thank Bethany House Publishers, Netgalley for giving me a copy of this book. This gift did not influence my opinion or review.
Also in this series: Veiled in Smoke
“The opposite of fear is not courage. The opposite of fear is faith.” – Kristof – Shadows of the White City
When her adopted daughter went missing, Sylvie had to learn to trust God and His goodness. To trust Him even when circumstances appeared so bleak. Jocelyn Green depicted her grief and the desperation of her search so well I felt Sylvie’s pain as she attempted to continue to work at the World’s Fair despite her broken heart.
In addition to the emotional search for the missing Rose was Sylvie’s hurt over Rose’s attitude towards her as she searched for her “real” family. Oh, how that must have hurt! To pour out your heart and care on a child for so many years and then have her reject you in favor of strangers!
I loved reading about the World’s Fair and especially enjoyed the beautiful descriptions that allowed me to better visualize it through the tours that Sylvie gave. There was no point at which I felt I was being lectured to about it due to how the information was conveyed. Too bad it isn’t possible to go back in time to visit it myself – I would have loved to experience it in person!
Through Kristof, I was able to see the heart of a man breaking for the choices his brother had made and the dilemma of what to do – or not. He also struggled with the need for perfection, even to the point of needing to straighten items on the table that were askew. What a kind and gentle man he was!!
Shadows of the White City introduced me not only to the World’s Fair but also to some of the seedier aspects of Chicago and its tenements. My heart ached at the treatment of the immigrants and at the conditions in which they lived.
Readers who love historical fiction with a strong Christian message will enjoy this lovely story.