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{March 9, 2012}   {Review} Tandem Tryst by Ralph E. Horner

From Goodreads: What if there was a ring that, when worn, sent you back in time to reunite you with the soul of a deceased loved one? In Tandem Tryst, such a ring exists. In this paranormal mystery romance, three years after Jeff Voss’s young wife Marcy dies, he locates an enchanted ring. Jeff discovers that, while wearing it, he goes back one hundred years to the time of the Chicago World’s Fair of 1893. Jeff soon learns the purpose of the ring when he meets Melody Bishop, a twin of his beloved wife. He finds out that Melody is Marcy’s ancestor, and her now living soul. Although Jeff has several hurdles to clear, including Melody’s boyfriend, he feels he has a second chance in this distant time with the love that was taken from him prematurely. To complicate matters, dark forces are at work, as a mysterious woman wearing various ethnic disguises, stalks and continually attempts to steal Jeff’s ring, even if by murder.

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This is a wonderful time travel novel!  I really liked the idea behind the story.  Full of mystery and intrigue, Jeff easily adapts to life in 1893, but a killer is on the loose and will stop at nothing to take Jeff’s ring and stop him from traveling into the past.  Though I found the prose to be a bit choppy in places, and the pacing to be more on the fast side, jumping from event to event, I think Tandem Tryst lends itself very well to this style.  At no point did I ever feel lost, or that events were happening too fast.  The characterization is pristine and, while I’ll admit that there is room to flesh out the events and the characters within the story, I found that it was a great read nonetheless—sometimes all the extra prose can be more or less pointless and weighs down a story.  Instead, Horner focuses only on the important events, stringing them all together and keeping the readers interest.

I thoroughly enjoyed the characters and their plight, especially as Jeff and Melody begin to fall in love.  The explanations behind the rings powers and Melody’s and Marcy’s connections were very well thought out, and Horner does a phenomenal job switching between the language divide as Jeff transcends both past and present.  It is evident that a lot of research went into this novel, and the depictions of the Chicago World’s Fair are amazing; it’s a time period I would really like to see, and Horner was able to take me there in this great time travel novel.  Learning about the rings power through trial and error, Jeff and Melody’s adventures are compelling and it’s impossible not to root for them. I really enjoyed it and hope there will be a sequel, especially based on the phenomenal twist at the end of the story.  Four stars.

I received a copy of this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review.

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