THE SEVENTH MISS HATFIELD
by Anna Caltabiano
Publication Date: July 31st 2014 (paper)
Received From: Gollancz
Received From: Gollancz
Rebecca, a 15-year-old American, isn't entirely happy with her life, comfortable though it is. Still, even she knows that she shouldn't talk to strangers. So when her mysterious neighbour Miss Hatfield asked her in for a chat and a drink, Rebecca wasn't entirely sure why she said yes. It was a decision that was to change everything.
For Miss Hatfield is immortal. And now, thanks to a drop of water from the Fountain of Youth, Rebecca is as well. But this gift might be more of a curse, and it comes with a price. Rebecca is beginning to lose her personality, to take on the aspects of her neighbour. She is becoming the next Miss Hatfield.
But before the process goes too far, Rebecca must travel back in time to turn-of-the-century New York and steal a painting, a picture which might provide a clue to the whereabouts of the source of immortality. A clue which must remain hidden from the world. In order to retrieve the painting, Rebecca must infiltrate a wealthy household, learn more about the head of the family, and find an opportunity to escape. Before her journey is through, she will also have - rather reluctantly - fallen in love. But how can she stay with the boy she cares for, when she must return to her own time before her time-travelling has a fatal effect on her body? And would she rather stay and die in love, or leave and live alone?
And who is the mysterious stranger who shadows her from place to place? A hunter for the secret of immortality - or someone who has already found it?
The Seventh Miss Hatfield is a romantic and bewitching tale that will break your heart, spark your imagination and have you dreaming of turn of the century America. It is wonderfully written by an incredible author that I can't wait to read more from. Taking the myth of The Fountain of Youth Anna creates a story that is exciting with so many twists and turns that it will have you turning the page well into the early hours of the morning.
The book itself is about destiny and impossible loves. It follows the newest Miss Hatfield as she comes to terms with her newfound immortality and the conditions that come with it. Endless life isn't all it's cracked up to be and finding somewhere to belong is next to impossible when you no longer fit into any one time. Cynthia has to be able to let go of who she was and embrace her new identity. But can she keep to the constrictions of her new life without it suffocating her? Can she be the seventh Miss Hatfield without loosing who she once was?
At the heart of this book is a love story to rival some of the greats. There wasn't a part of me that didn't want these two to find a way to make it work. Henley and Rebecca were unbelievably perfect for one another and they have this old school magic between them that is endearing and heart breaking all at the same time. On the back of the book it says "A spellbinding story of time-travel and unrequited love." But what it doesn't tell you is that the 'unrequited' love will turn you into an emotional wreck. I spent the whole last third of the book holding my breath with a knot in my stomach willing the two of them to find a way to be together.
The only issue I had with this book was at the very beginning. Everything happened so fast and as well written as it was I needed Cynthia to question what was going on around her more. She seemed to simply take everything in her stride and with the severity of her situation it didn't seem realistic. Honestly if it was me I would have thrown one hell of a tantrum!
Overall this is a great book. It had one or two moments towards the beginning where I wasn't so sure. However, it didn’t take long for this book to win me over with its rich characters and beautiful writing. I'm practically busting to get my hands on the second book in the series and will be waiting - rather impatiently - for the day I get to read more of Rebecca's story.
So go lovelies and add The Seventh Miss Hatfield to your TBR lists. It's not out until the 17th of July but I highly recommend this one. I couldn't but it down and I know if you've enjoyed my other recommendations you'll adore this story.
@TheYANightstand Promise you won't be missing Henley for long!
— Anna Caltabiano (@caltabiano_anna) June 30, 2014
I received this book as an ARC from Gollancz to read & review. This is a 100% honest review.