For her own protection following the murder of her brother Will, hotel heiress Estella Everstone assumes the alias of Elle Stoneburner and takes a job as companion to an elderly widow. Never did she imagine that her position would lead her back to her beloved Everston, a picturesque resort property tucked away in the rugged mountains of Maine. Living below her station in a guise of anonymity has its struggles, but her spirits are buoyed by a newfound friendship with the hotel manager, Dexter Blakeley. And his distaste for the spoiled socialites who frequent his hotel causes her to take a close look at her own priorities and past lifestyle. When Estella finds herself in need of help, Dexter comes to the rescue with an offer of employment she can’t refuse. As the two interact and open up to each other, Estella feels a growing attraction to Dexter; and increasing discomfort over concealing her identity. Yet, in spite of the false pretense she’s putting forth, she’s never felt freer to be herself than in his presence. But will he still love her when he learns the truth about who she is?
Book Three in the Everstone Chronicles, The Captive Imposter continues the saga of the Everstone family, this time focusing on Estella. I have to admit that I was a little lost at the beginning because I somehow missed the release of book two and was a little out of the loop. It didn’t take long to recover though, because Crandall makes enough ties to the previous stories to get caught up without having to have read them both.
Crandall writes in the first person, which is unique for a historical, but it really helps you engage with the point-of-view character, Estella. With vivid descriptions, smooth dialogue, and a “captivating” plot, this book quickly pulled me in and kept me reading until I knew exactly how Estella’s story would end. This time period isn’t the usual historical that I read, but I really enjoyed this book – it reminds me of a cross between Sarah Ladd and Lorna Seilstad. A great read for a relaxing holiday weekend!
*I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.