BY GINA L. MULLIGAN
Publication Date: September 15, 2016
Five Star Publications
Hardcover & eBook; 271 Pages
Self-indulgent young writer Thomas Gadwell has traveled from Boston to the new Hotel Del Coronado in California to at last finish his novel when he meets the clever and headstrong Miss Mary Harting. At once Thomas tosses aside his literary pursuits for a charmed summer of romance that ends with the happy couple making future plans. However, Mary Harting is the only unmarried daughter of notorious railroad tycoon Charles Harting, and he has no intention of letting a useless wordsmith derail his own critical plans for Mary. The couple must continue a clandestine courtship, but Thomas’ ingenuity has unexpected repercussions and he unwittingly uncovers a sinister plot of deception, greed, and blackmail. Guided by mentor Henry James, to win Mary, Thomas must step from the pages of the world he creates to explore his own insecurities, battle against worldly corruption, and expose family demons.
Told through a series of clever, heartfelt, and engaging letters, From Across the Room is a voyeuristic escapade that delights at every twist. Reflecting back to a time when letters were saved in the imagination of the reader, the lost art of letter writing brings to life the opulent Gilded Age and unfolds the universal passions of love, ambition, and the resilient bonds of family.
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Praise for From Across the Room
“A passionate love story set in a brilliantly recreated Gilded Age, this intimate epistolary novel takes the reader from a wide-open California to the salons of literary and industrial New York. Colorful and indelible characters stride across the pages of this exceptionally vivid historical novel that brings the past stirringly to life.” -Diana Birchall, Bestselling Author of Mr. Darcy’s Dilemma
“Gina Mulligan’s impeccable prose, engaging characters, and original style reminds us all why we love to read.” -Reza Kahlili, 2010 National Best Books winner for A Time to Betray
“The characters have richly defined voices and fascinating lives that sparkle against a transcontinental history of America at the beginning of the twentieth century.” -Jessica Klein, Award-winning Writer/Producer of Northern Exposure, Beverly Hills 90210, Gabriel’s Fire and other popular TV series.
Author Thomas Galdwell takes a working vacation to the all new Hotel New Coronado in San Diego to find inspiration for his newest novel. While there, he bumps into a young woman, Mary Harting. Mary intrigues Thomas with her spirit and kind nature. However, Mary's father is the railroad tycoon Charles Harting and has other plans for Mary that do not involve Thomas. Thomas and Mary try their best to continue their relationship behind her father's back while Thomas attempts to finish two more novels on a tight deadline and unravel the mystery of the man Mr. Harting has chosen for Mary.
Told in epistolary form, Thomas Galdwell's letters tell the story of a writer, a romance and a mystery in the late 19th Century. All of the letters are written from by Thomas and are sent to his agent, his family, his friends and Mary. At first, this fact threw me since I am used to seeing both sides of a correspondence. Since there was only one side of the story being presented, I filled in a lot in my head, especially about Mary. We are given glimpses into her personality when Thomas uses quotes or relays a story, but I would have liked to know a little more about her. Through his letters, Thomas' character shines and I was taken on an emotional roller coaster as he dealt with deadlines, love, villains and interesting neighbors. The ending through me for a loop but also made everything make sense.
This book was received for free in return for an honest review.
Gina L. Mulligan is a veteran freelance journalist for numerous national magazines and the author of the award-winning novel, REMEMBER THE LADIES and FROM ACROSS THE ROOM. After her own diagnosis, Gina founded Girls Love Mail, a charity that collects handwritten letters of encouragement for women with breast cancer. She was honored for her charitable work on the nationally syndicated television talk show The Steve Harvey Show, People.com, and TODAY.com.
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