I’m a sucker for a time travel story and this one grabbed me straight away. Evidently the author, Diane Chamberlain, doesn’t typically write this style book. I give her an A+ for this delivery.
Carly Sears has had a lot of heartache in a short period of time. Her parents were killed in an accident when she was a teenager and so her only family is her sister Patti. That is established early on so you know what a tight relationship they have.
The book starts off in the 1970’s in North Carolina. Carly had recently been told her husband Joe was killed in Vietnam. Unbeknownst to Joe and Carly, she had conceived and was pregnant when he shipped out. Now Carly is a pregnant young widow and to top off that pain she learns her baby has a heart condition that is fatal to the newborn, at least it is in 1970.
We start out with Carly as a young physical therapist doing an internship of sorts. She is the only therapist to connect with a depressed patient named Hunter Poole and this is where her life takes a dramatic turn. Hunter is from the future but no one knows this yet. He never wanted anyone to know. Hunter marries Carly’s sister Patti and establishes his life there in North Carolina. It’s before the cell phones, computers, microwaves and all the modern conveniences we have today. It’s also a lot less stressful for him.
Once it’s determined through the early development of ultrasound that Carly’s baby will die, he makes the decision to tell her about himself. He knows if he can get his sister-in-law to the future an operation can be performed on the fetus, thus saving her baby. Carly would do a time jump from 1970 into New York City in 2001, get the advanced medical help she needs for her unborn child Joanna, then slide on back to her home in 1970 North Carolina. Easy peasy, right?
Obviously she thinks he has a screw loose as this is an unbelievable story. To convince Carly he isn’t crazy he tells her about the Kent State shooting which will happen in a few days. Everything falls into place for Carly such as the reason he knows the lyrics to Beatles’ songs on the day they are released or how he could know about events before they happened.
A quote from Hunter: “There were days I missed the comforts of 2018. I missed my laptop computer and cell phone and the Internet more than anything. I missed being able to easily communicate with my friends, I missed being able to look up information in seconds. But 1970 came with a sort of peace I’d never known before………I traded my laptop and cell phone for a hammock and a book.”
Foodie references are not frequent. Fried chicken , ham hocks and butter beans and homemade biscuits. Homemade food, all the time! But Carly in 2001 will experience Taco Bell for the first time. Takeaway food, Google searches, iPads, cell phones and more. Wouldn’t that just blow you away? It would for me but I can say, there are times I would trade all this for a Norman Rockwell lifestyle that I had growing up in the 50’s and 60’s.
The characters are all likable and that’s a refreshing change from some of the books I have abandoned lately. There is so much more to the story but I can’t give away any spoilers because this was a fun read. I hope if you like the time travel element you will check this out. It’s not all smooth and problem-solved, there are a couple of twists I wasn’t expecting.
My only negative comment is that I think the resolution with Hunter’s mother wasn’t necessary. Too neatly tied up and frankly didn’t suit her personality. Yes, you’d have to read it to get a grip on Myra Poole’s character and why I feel this way.
Thanks very much to NetGalley for providing me with this pre-lease copy of the Dream Daughter. I very much enjoyed it. Opinions are mine and I was not compensated for this review.
Linking up with Heather’s September Foodie Reads.