I am embarrassed to admit that I am sorely behind in my Elizabeth Camden reading, so today I decided to play catch up and checked out the first one I hadn’t read, With Every Breath, from my county library’s Overdrive account. (Side note: if your library has Overdrive for ebooks, you need to avail yourself of it – it’s wonderful! If your library doesn’t use Overdrive, beg them to do so post haste.)
It may be a while before I recover from the beautiful poignancy of this book.
With Every Breath takes place in Washington, D.C. near the end of the 19th century, an era of hope in the future and great scientific and medical advancements. In school, Kate Norton and Trevor McDonough competed in everything, but especially in everything academic. Years later, Trevor (now a Harvard-educated doctor) needs an assistant to fight alongside him in the battle to find a cure for tuberculosis, someone who can handle both the complicated data and the personal risk. Seeking out his former rival – the one woman he’s never been able to forget – he plucks Kate from her job as a government statistician and hires her on the spot. As they labor to exhaustion side-by-side in his hospital research ward, Kate’s attraction to Trevor deepens along with her fears…and her curiosity. Why did he change his last name? Where was he during a blank two-year period in his history of accolades and press releases? And possibly the most important question of all – why is someone trying to sabotage their research and malign Trevor’s reputation? When all the answers are on the table, will Kate’s fears force her to walk away from any future they might have had?
Like Kate, I know what it’s like to live in fear’s grip. To worry about the people you love until you suffocate them in its shadow. That need to control and protect her brother, her parents, even Trevor – it just consumed her until she was wearied to the bone with it. Much like tuberculosis, the disease she was helping to cure, fear starts small and soon infects your entire being and can even spread to those around you. If they were treating fear instead of TB, Kate and I both would have been prime candidates for their ward. “With Every Breath” hit me deep in my heart & brought to mind a struggle I thankfully have overcome, brushing at only the mere nuisance of a thorn that remains.
But With Every Breath is not just about fear – it is also about friendship. A delightful, if unlikely and unexpected, friendship between two former rivals. Peppered with witty banter that is sharply on the mark each time, Kate and Trevor prove that there are some things – and people – you never outgrow. Trevor’s dry humor and Kate’s snappy comebacks are lots of fun to read and many times had me grinning like a fool!
With Every Breath is a story of hope that blossoms in the midst of an infecting grief, of persistence that refuses to acknowledge the impossible, and of love that conquers fear. This novel will be a favorite of mine for years to come! Highly recommended for anyone who loves historical and/or medical fiction in addition to romance… with a bit of mystery thrown in for good measure!
I give it 5 out of 5 stars and a spot on my favorites shelf!! Now on to Beyond All Dreams which I won in a giveaway …. after I read the hundred other books on my TBR chair first. Yes, that’s right – I have a to-be-read chair. This book thing may be an addiction, but I don’t think I want to be cured 🙂 How about you?
Elizabeth Camden is a research librarian at a small college in central Florida. Her novels have won the coveted RITA and Christy Awards. She has published several articles for academic publications and is the author of four nonfiction history books. Her ongoing fascination with history and love of literature have led her to write inspirational fiction. Elizabeth lives with her husband near Orlando, Florida. You can connect with Elizabeth at her website.