"Elusive Hope" is the sequel to "Forsaken Dreams" by MaryLu Tyndall, in the "Escape to Paradise" trilogy. "Elusive Hope" releases November 1, 2013. This sequel continues the tale begun in "Forsaken Dreams", and really would not do so well as a stand-alone.
We return to the lives of our new Brazilian settlers, where we find Magnolia Scott working in the hospital while her father breathes down her neck what a lady should and should not do. Magnolia seeks relief from him and intends to run away back to Georgia, where her fiancé' awaits. However, there is no opportunity for this until Hayden Gale is told to have an approaching voyage to Rio.
Hayden Gale and Magnolia have been constantly at odds with each other ever since "Forsaken Dreams", where they shared a kiss. Besides that and Magnolia's ogling, there has not been much chemistry, only frustration. But when Magnolia secretly (or rather, not so secretly) follows Hayden into the jungle towards Rio, he finds that she isn't the stuck-up lady that she seems, and some unbidden admiration wells up in Hayden for his companion that, unbeknownst to her, he is planning on cheating out of her travelling money.
This book is vividly alive with spiritual warfare containing an intensity to rival Indiana Jones, an unexpected (to the characters) romance, and a unique setting. The plot and characters were continuously revealed in different lights to keep me as the reader intrigued. I can honestly say that this book went way over my expectations after reading "Forsaken Dreams", which I found to be slower-moving.
*Note: You may not want to read the epilogue until the next book is available to you; it's quite haunting. In addition, Magnolia and other characters drink. May not be appropriate for easily sea-sickened readers.*
Thank you so much to Net Galley and Barbour publishing for providing me with an advanced reader's copy of this book to read and review.