Against the Tide

Against the Tide

by Elizabeth Camden
4.6 64

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Against the Tide 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 64 reviews.
Patito_de_Hule More than 1 year ago
Lydia Pallas grew up surrounded with instability, but she is finally content with her comforting home and rewarding job as a translator for the U. S. Navy. She meticulously organizes her surroundings so that, for the first time in her life, she feels she's in control of her life. However, her landlords are now threatening to throw her out of the only stable home she's ever had. She needs to raise several hundred dollars to buy her home by December. Seemingly fortuitously, Alexander Banebridge (Bane), a friend of her boss, offers to pay her a lot of money for some free-lance translation work. Even though Lydia begins to question the odd requests of Bane, she finds herself attracted to his cleverness, charm, and sense of humor. Soon, she is swept up into a dangerous world of opium smuggling.  I have a lot of good things to say about this book. I loved the late 1800's Boston setting - it's a time which lends itself easily to romance. Although there were a few moments that I wondered if the language was historically accurate, I felt Camden did an excellent job with her research into opium trade. Despite (or possibly because of) Lydia's OCD quirks, she was very lovable. I really found myself empathizing with her pain - losing her family, the stress of raising money to buy the only home she's ever felt safe in, and her feelings for Bane. On the other hand, I inwardly groaned at her devotion to Bane and his cause. I totally understood WHY she was in love, but cringed at the foolishness of loving a man who claims he has no interest in marriage, but doesn't mind a bit of flirting. But love is foolish, often, isn't it?  I was sort of torn - I empathized with her frustrations with Bane, but I also wished she would find herself a nice dedicated man. This is a similar conundrum I felt while reading Jane Eyre - I wanted her to live happily ever after with the man she loved, but I thought she was risking too much by loving him. I guess that makes it more romantic, in some ways? The other thing that I really appreciated about this book (though my attention was only drawn to it because I'm about to lead a book discussion): the questions that Camden provided at the end of the book were really deep! I didn't realize how many sticky philosophical and spiritual questions were brought up in the story until I read the discussion questions. And they're not spiritual questions that have an obvious "right-if-you're-REALLY-a-Christian" answer, which is what a lot of end-of-book discussion questions in Christian Fiction seem to be. Personally, I don't see the world in black and white, so I love the opportunity to discuss grey. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really liked this story. It was well developed and multi-dimensional. A good read.
J_Augustine More than 1 year ago
What a ride! Child kidnapping, the opium trade, ancient manuscripts, an insane professor, an impossibly handsome man, a woman desperate for order that is brilliant at languages, the U.S. Navy, Boston Harbor, a near fortress in Vermont, and a bottle of Mrs. Winslow's Soothing Syrup. All of these together make for a fast paced adventure set in the 1890's. I had wanted to read Against The Tide when I first heard about it but it took my wonderful local Library to get a copy into my anxious hands. Against The Tide is not your usual light dance through a historical period. There are no merry parties, fancy dresses, long walks in the moonlight. This books deals with drugs, addiction, people who will stop at nothing including murder to keep the illegal import of opium going, a man who also will stop at nothing to end the opium trade, kidnappings, manipulations etc. It was darker than many historical novels but there really were dark periods in history; not everything was tea and cakes. This book was a bit of an eye opener. I honestly had no clue that orphanages in the 1800's actually drugged children with opium to keep them quiet and compliant. So often the view of the opium trade is that described in the Sherlock Holmes stories, dark, dirty, foul places full of people smoking and lying in a drug addled stupor. Against The Tide shows how even children and a young woman can become addicted without them even knowing it. All of that said, don't let it stop you from reading this book. This book deals with hard subjects but it is still entertaining and well worth the time spent reading. The descriptions of locales were excellent! My little movie-in-my-brain that runs while a read had a lot to work with. The cover is gorgeous! The almost-ending is a little difficult but the end is happy. This is a must read book from 2012.
CherishD More than 1 year ago
Really good read! Enjoyed the faith, clean romance, and hold your breath moments. Always enjoy the stories with characters who fight so hard to rise above their roots.
MiRxMom More than 1 year ago
This book had a lot of good qualities, unique storyline, engaging characters, historical accuracy, and a decent romance. I wanted to love it but it somehow fell short. Perhaps it was the negative portrayal of pharmacists that turned me off? Rationally, it would be unfair to judge the merits of the novel on that but an emotional response to a book is rarely rational. This novel does illustrate the dangers of drug addiction and how terrible a problem opium was before the government instituted control over patent medicines and began making some substances controlled. Historically there were children addicted to opium before they could walk because it was found in high concentrations in tonics marketed to soothe babies. Unfortunately, opioid addiction is still present in children when they are born to mothers who took controlled substances while pregnant. But at least you can't go in and purchase these highly addictive narcotics over the counter.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is an excellent book about the use of opium in medications, and especially in children's medications, in the late 1800's. This story will keep your attention right to the end. The plot contains a wide range of emotional issues including heartache, struggles, crime, mystery, murder, bravery and love. I highly recommend this book. Elizabeth Camden has done an outstanding job in writing it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lydia is drawn into language translation and an empty heart. Her determination draws the reader from page to page as she discovers herself. A compelling read.
PollyBennett More than 1 year ago
A wonderful very well written book that wasn't afraid to cover American Cocaine use in the 1800s and how the drugs were brought into our country and distributed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it from cover to cover!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A wonderful story of right conquering might. I love the way the author weaves this tale!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love her stories about strong, smart and independent woman at a time in history when women were thought to be submissive and frail. Great story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved this story
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am thrilled to have stumbled upon this author Elizabeth Camden is a wonderful writer and I have thoroughly enjoyed EVERY book I have read so far I have just finished my 6th book of hers and they all have been so well written Highly recommend her and can't wait to read more!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Her novels are full of innteresting facts of the era that are not normaly found in others novels.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked this book very much. Very enlightening story with historical insight of the drug trade in the 1800's.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book grabbed my interest from the very first. The story and characters are well written and I enjoyed the entire book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Quick and easy reading. Good story that keeps you entertained.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Interesting story, wrapped around the little talked about abuse of opium in our recent history.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. A total twist from the traditional western love story which I found refreshing. I do wish the faith part of the story would have explained the need to accept Christ as one's Savior rather than just rely on one's belief in God and the Bible. Other than that I have no complaints and easily give this story 5 stars. Enjoy!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago