An Uncommon Woman

An Uncommon Woman

by Laura Frantz


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Unflinching and plainspoken, Tessa Swan is not your typical 18th-century woman. Born and bred on the western Virginia frontier along with her five brothers, she is a force to be reckoned with.

Quiet and courageous, Clay Tygart is not your typical 18th-century man. Raised by Lenape Indians, he returns a hero from the French and Indian War to the fort that bears his name, bringing with him Tessa's long-lost friend, Keturah, who disappeared from the settlement years earlier.

Determined to avoid any romantic entanglements as fort commander, Clay remains aloof whenever he encounters the lovely Tessa. But when circumstances force Clay's hand—and heart—the stage is set for one very private and one very public reckoning.

Intense, evocative, and laced with intricate historical details that bring the past to life, An Uncommon Woman will transport you to the picturesque and dangerous western Virginia mountains of 1770.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780800734954
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 01/07/2020
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 91,489
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Laura Frantz is a Christy Award winner and the ECPA bestselling author of eleven novels, including The Frontiersman's Daughter, Courting Morrow Little, The Colonel's Lady, The Lacemaker, and A Bound Heart. Learn more at

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An Uncommon Woman 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 62 reviews.
SherryD 7 days ago
This was an uncommon book indeed for me. I typically read few historical books. And this one seemed a little slow in starting -but then I didn't want it to end. I kept living in the book in my mind, long after it was over. The authentic language of the times took a while to get used to but lent authenticity to the story. I learned so much about the colonial Americans and the Native Americans and their lives, culture and customs during this period. It was incredibly hard to live then. It gives me a new appreciation of our ancestors. The faith thread was important to the story and gave the characters depth. And the romance between Tessa and Clay was beautifully written. It conveyed feeling and anticipation. Not a book I will soon forget. I recommend it highly. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Net Galley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Anonymous 16 days ago
Laura Franz has a way of transporting the reader to another place in history from the very first page! I immediately felt that I had entered into the life of Tessa as she was trapped on the river with her brother between two warring Indian tribes while arrows flew by them. Franz portrays the reality of life on the frontier. The characters go through loss and live in a world where it's a struggle to stay alive. In spite of the heartache and loss, there is hope for a different future and love. Franz's novels are always well-researched with vivid descriptions, deep characterization and well developed stories, and there's always a top-notch romance to add icing to the cake! I highly recommend this novel! I was thoroughly drawn into the story of Tessa and Clay! I received a review copy of this novel from the publisher, Revell. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.
JeanneAC 17 days ago
Author Laura Frantz has an amazing way of immersing you into the story, where the characters and the story are so real. The frontier and all the struggles that came with living in 1770 come alive by the pen of Laura Frantz. I was almost bereft when I got to the end of the story. I wasn't ready to be done! I seriously could have kept turning pages. Will there be a sequel!? I would love that. Fantastic Historical fiction!
Anonymous 19 days ago
I enjoyed the story Tessa was a stong willed woman , the Author did a great job bringing to life the stories of the 18th century life of the early Virginans and the Native Americans . The sweet romance between Clay and Tessa was my favorite part of the story . An enjoy able red for sure !
RobinWillson 19 days ago
Buckhannon River, Western Virginia Spring 1770 Amazing story of frontier life with the presence of Indians around the settlers. Native Americans who didn't want them there. Tessa and her family have a ferry business not far from Fort Tygart. Just her mother and five brothers. The detail of this story is written as though the author was there. I was fully engaged from the beginning and I swear I held my breath through the entire second half of the book. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher and NetGalley book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” #AnUncommonWoman #NetGalley
A1Reads 25 days ago
Such an amazing story! I could not put it down! Tessa's life has always known danger, she longs for peace. Her best friend has returned after many years of captivity. Though she has changed much, she is still a sister of the heart. I loved the intense friendship between the two women even when parted. Matchmaking Great Aunt Hester was a wonderful character as was Maddie ❤️ Clay has many troubles of his own and believes harm will come to everyone he loves. But there is something special about Tessa Swan. I enjoyed the stolen kisses and the unconventional romance. Tessa is a no-nonsense kind of woman with a bit of stubbornness to her. I loved her and Clay together! I have both read and listened to this book, I highly recommend it! Aimee Lilly is a wonderful narrator and she sings!
ABook_ADay 25 days ago
You may have read stories of pioneers moving west in the 1800s but going back even earlier in time to the first pioneers who ventured west before the Revolutionary War is the setting of this book. Tessa has always lived life in the western Virginia frontier which includes always looking over your shoulder and carrying gun at all times. She dreams of the day that she can live in freedom from the fear of Indians. Her life begins to change when a new frontiersman moves to take charge of the fort. She begins to see life with a different point of view. When a friend from the past comes back into her life, she questions how she can help her friend. The book was very well researched and detailed on life of the frontier. It gave a glimpse of what life on the frontier truly would have been. The pioneers were truly brave men and women to endure the challenges of the frontier. I can definitely see why Tessa would desire to go over the mountain to leave the frontier. The characters were dynamic and well developed. The interactions and relationships were believable and well thought out. There were a few twists in the book that I did not expect. I felt as if they added to the plot and made it even more enjoyable to read. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and could not put down the book once I began reading it. I received a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are my own and I was not required to leave a positive review.
BookReviewerNicole 25 days ago
*My Thoughts* My heart. There are a few authors I absolutely ADORE. Laura is always at the top of my list because I can count on an engaging story, endearing characters, and a swoon worthy romance. An Uncommon Woman may have climbed my favorites list, although I think I do say that about every single Frantz book I have ever picked up so I think it may be a tie. (I own every book. Seriously.) Another beautiful Frantz tale of romance and adventure on the frontier, An Uncommon Woman is rich in historical detail and is as comforting as it is edgy. A story that makes you want to wrap up in your favorite quilt and curl up by the fire or in a cozy spot on your front porch swing, I highly recommend you pick this one up! _______________________________________________________ *My Rating* I give An Uncommon Woman by Laura Frantz... 5 stars! *I received this book free of charge from the author.
Shopgirl152ny1 28 days ago
This was such a fascinating time period to learn about and I enjoyed the love story between Tessa and Clay. I can't imagine the stress and fear of living in 1770's West Virginia where you're caught in the middle of settlers and Indians fighting over land, among other things. Settlers were either being killed and scalped or taken captive left and right, it seemed. It was fascinating seeing what it would have been like to be returned after years of captivity, when you probably don't even remember your family and are so used to Indian ways, and for the people who aren't sure what to make of you. This story really portrayed the emotion and showed what the day-to-day life would have been like for a woman. Tessa was truly a woman to be reckoned with, capable of anything and incredibly tough. She also had a strong faith and often prayed while going about her chores. I also admired how she found the good or the beautiful in her circumstances, even while going through some pretty hard things. I enjoyed her banter with Clay. There were also some sweet romantic moments. Clay struggled a bit more with faith as he felt stuck between two worlds, the Lenape Indians who raised him and the Quaker relatives he's returned to years later. He also feared falling in love as the people he loved were taken from him. There was suspense and action as attacks kept happening far and near. I would highly recommend this story if you like historical fiction. I received this book free from Revell. I was not compensated for this review. All opinions are my own.
MindyStaley 28 days ago
In An Uncommon Woman, Laura Frantz delights us with a tale that transports is back to the late 18th century. Laura Frantz uses colorful imagery to draw us in to the world of Tessa Swan and Clay Tygart. Through descriptive scenarios and scene building, Frantz encourages us to picture the story and has us gripping the edges of our seats as the scenes unfold. This was my first book read by Laura Frantz, and it definitely won’t be my last!
MaryAnnB 29 days ago
Having grown up along the Muskingum River in Ohio, I considered it a special treat to receive a complimentary advance copy of this book from Revell through NetGalley. This is really a tale of two uncommon women and the strength of their friendship. Keturah and Tessa were childhood friends who became separated for many years when Keturah was captured by Indians. This story describes many difficulties of daily life on the frontier and the complexities of relations between the Native Americans and the settlers. I loved the tempered pace of the unfolding plot and the relationship between Tessa and Colonel Tygart. I usually look for a book to inspire and change me in some way, and although I thoroughly enjoyed this story, that element was missing. As always, I am eagerly waiting for my next Laura Frantz book.
Changed-by-Christ 29 days ago
One thing to know about a Laura Frantz novel is that in them, you will be transported back in time. It doesn’t matter whether you like the time period of not or whether you’re interested in the subject, I can nearly guarantee that you will be transported into the book and that time period like never before. That’s what happened with me while reading this book. I’ve never had much of an interest in frontier America, at least not novels set during that time, but from the first page, Frantz pulled me in and I was hooked. Another thing to note when approaching a Laura Frantz novel is that the characters will worm and burrow their ways into your heart and when you’re finished, it will feel like leaving an old friend. Once again, that’s what happened with this book. As I read about the Swan family and their struggles, triumphs, I cried with them, laughed with them and became bonded with them in a way that is uncommon. Laura Frantz has a way of bringing the characters alive so that they jump off the page at you. At the end of the day, Laura Frantz’s novels are wonderful, phenomenal and I highly suggest you read them. They may be slow at points but it’s barely noticeable when the history and characters come alive as they do. If you enjoy historical novels, please, please try An Uncommon Woman or any of Laura Frantz’s books, I’m sure you will not regret it! **I received a complementary copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are my own.**
Stardust_Fiddle 3 months ago
2020 is already shaping up to be a spectacular year for Christian fiction. There are so many exciting new releases scheduled for the months ahead, and those published in this first month of the year have set a high standard. It is such a joy to see favorite authors writing books that somehow surpass their previous titles while continuing to explore deep spiritual truths. Last year I read “A Bound Heart”, and was moved by the love and heartache in the story. Because I enjoy early American settings and particularly the Colonial period, I knew that I had to read “An Uncommon Woman.” Laura Frantz has a unique way of telling a story, not relying on the archetypal pleasurable plotline. Fittingly, such is the case with “An Uncommon Woman.” The narrative maintains a somber tone, yet faith and relationships keep it from becoming lugubrious. While we often do read fiction to escape from the vagaries of life, it also helps us to feel less alone in our own struggles and can instruct us. Frantz does not romanticize life on the western Virginia frontier in 1770 but rather writes of it in its volatile actuality. The tensions between not only the settlers and the Native American tribes but also between the tribes themselves results in living “on the razor’s edge of peril.” For “[h]ere on the savage border, things changed in a heartbeat, a breath. Life was lived in the shadow of lasts.” I was surprised to learn about how vulnerable those living outside a city (“overmountain” in this book) were on a continual basis. Truthfully, this is one of the reasons that I love this book so much; this unflinching approach gives me a renewed respect for the settlers and inspires me by their sheer tenacity. Conflict with and between the Native Americans is a key element in this story, as is diversity. Colonel Clayton Tygart, kidnapped by Lenape Indians as a boy and a hero of the Seven Years’ War, is “the white Indian, a so-called redeemed savage brought back from the brink of heathenism in the nick of time.” As such, he straddles both worlds, which makes his character all the more intriguing, and the fact that he has heterochromia symbolically underscores his duality. Likewise, Keturah Braam inhabits this mediate position after living half of her life as a captive and must try to reconcile both identities. Two periphery characters who captured my interest are Jude and Maddie, former slaves, because they are respected by the central characters, which is a pleasant surprise given the time period. As for Tessa Swan, I expected her to be the titular character, but I think that it refers more to Keturah, although both are unconventional. Tessa is a fascinating heroine who is accustomed to but weary of life on the frontier because “[a]ll her life had been spent looking over her shoulder. Such unceasing, ingrained guardedness wore a body down.” Nevertheless, she never shirks her duty, and most importantly, she remains steadfast in her faith in God: “She wasn’t fancy, but she had the Bible to bolster her. She would be a woman of strength and honor, however humble.” When trials arise, this faith is the necessary element that sustains her, as it should be ours. As Joshua 1:9 affirms, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.
Blooming-with-Books 3 months ago
An Uncommon Woman By Laura Frantz Tessa Swan has had a life of toil and work yet she dreams about what a life overmountain would be like? A life where she would live the life of a lady rather than one in constant worry over Indian attacks and hard daily work. She has no overriding concern that she is not yet married. Though her mother and Aunt Hester are concerned about the sad lack of marital bliss among the Swan offspring but women are few in the western Virginia frontier, Tessa isn't moved to encourage any man to seek her hand. Clay Tygart is a most unusual man, he is the new colonel of Fort Tygart and his younger years were spent raised by the Lenape Indians so that when he was "ransomed" he was considered half red. But the skills he learned while living as a son among the Lenape make him a perfect choice to be on the Virginian frontier to stand against them. But as Clay makes his way to his new posting he takes possession of a young woman who, like him, spent years among the Indians and is believed to have originally been from the area of Fort Tygart. When Clay brings his redeemed captive to Swan Station (the home of the Swan family) she is immediately recognized as Keturah Braam - Tessa's friend who was more of a sister to her until the day she was stolen away. Keturah has forgotten who she once was - speaking as Tessa phrases it "Indian". But not all among the Swan's are happy to see Keturah - eldest brother Jasper has deep-seated hostility towards any with Indian ties. Tessa has never had her head turned by any man but for some reason, Colonel Tygart has at the very least caught her eye. Why this should be she isn't sure. And she is unsure of the Colonel's feelings as he seems to at times ignore and others give her special attention. But when the ever-increasing signs of danger come to pass and the Swans are caught up in it Clay must confront his past and do what he can to rescue Tessa. This book is set in 1770 a few years before the American Revolution when the wilds of this land were not far beyond the eastern coastline. Treaties were made promising to not further encroach upon Indian lands but were so phrased so that the treaties could easily be broken while not technically breaking them. Unrest is their neighbor and unfortunately, it is with good reason. Both sides have exasperated the already strained relations that has all too easily boiled over into violence and bloodshed. This is the world Tessa wants to escape from - a world that has cost her her father and her friend. Those who love Early American / Colonial American historical fiction will enjoy this newest offering from Laura Frantz. The characters are easily connected with and one is given a view from multiple viewpoints though Tessa and Clay's are the most drawn upon. The pacing isn't rushed but neither does it drag so one can quite easily be drawn in for a long weekend of reading. I would recommend this book as an excellent option if you are in a book club and are in search of clean-reading historical romance. I was provided a complimentary copy of this book by the publisher with no expectations but that I provide my honest opinion - all thoughts expressed are my own.
Charity_Andrews 3 months ago
You know when you have your favorite one you get maybe once or twice in a lifetime? Think about how you savor every last morsel -- slowly taking bite after bite and stopping in between to enjoy all the layers of flavor and decadence.  That is this book.  This can not be read in one day, two days, or even a week. This is a book you read one delightful bit at a time.  I am not really sure how Laura Frantz does it, but somehow she gives enough information for you to really feel like you are there in that moment. I know what you are thinking -- DIALECT HEAVY. Not the case. Believe me. You feel like you are there, but you aren't skimming the lines and lines of description. She masterfully describes and pulls you in at the same time. Genius. Sheer genius.  This is another knock out of the park for Frantz and I can only hope that there's a sequel. (Please be a sequel!) I received this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review. This is me being honest. Here's to many more. 
mypreciousbitsandmusings 3 months ago
vics49548 3 months ago
Author Laura Frantz has a way of taking historical facts and weaving them into a compelling story that will draw you in. With well developed characters, both good and bad, along with wonderful descriptions of the western frontier, this book is one you won’t put down. With twists and turns to the plot, there is plenty of danger, and we see that frontier life isn’t always romantic, as often is painted in books and movies. Yet there is also humor in this story, so don’t think it’s going to be entirely serious and heavy. After all, who doesn’t love a grandma? I will say there were a few words that were very repetitive throughout the story, causing me to “speak” to the author while I was reading. I sure wish the editors had caught them. But it didn’t stop me from continuing on. Just made me flinch now and then. However if you enjoy historical fiction then you’ll enjoy all the history in this book. I highly recommend it! I received a complimentary copy of this book but was not required to leave a review.
BrittanyMc 3 months ago
An Uncommon Woman was, without a doubt, one of the best historical fiction books that I have read in a long time. The beautifully unfolding romance captivated me and I was completely immersed in this dangerous and dramatic frontier setting. The author did a wonderful job of crafting a story with rich details that made it easy for me to envision what life was like at this time in our history. There were so many interesting side characters in this story, too. I loved learning more about Keturah, as well as the various personalities of Tessa’s brothers. Of course, my favorite parts of the novel involved the budding romance between Clayton Tygart and Tessa Swan. Even as Clay resisted his attraction to Tessa, it built anyway. The feelings between these two characters were so realistic. My only sadness upon closing the last page of this book, was that it was indeed the last page! I would have so loved an epilogue, showing more of Tessa and Clay’s life together a few months or years into the future. I was simply not ready to let go of these two amazing characters! I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a review. All opinions are my own.
DianaFlow 3 months ago
With a sweep of her phenomenal quill, masterful wordsmith, Laura Frantz, has written a breathtaking, emotive novel set on the Virginia frontier—as hauntingly beautiful as it is heartrending. The lovely, straightforward Tessa Swan, has no interest in courting as the threat of Indian ambushes and meeting the domestic needs of five brothers takes precedence over such. However, when Clay Tygart, raised by the Lenape Indians returns to the fort, she finds herself quite unwillingly intrigued. Tall, adorned with buckskins, long ebony hair, and unusual eyes, I was quite besotted myself! What ensues is "an uncertain dance, she and Clay, and she was unsure of the next step." Sigh... 'Tis such a hopeless romantic, I am. Frantz's poetic prose and vivid imagery immediately whisked me off to another place and moment—a place ofttimes heartbreaking, but with timeless characters and situations that I savored—occasionally rereading entire passages. The courage of these early settlers and the toil and hardships they endured is almost beyond comprehension and truly admirable. An Uncommon Woman is an intriguing, romantic, award-worthy historical that will stay with me for a very long time. *I received a complimentary copy from the author and was not required to write a favorable review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.*
joanhochstetler 3 months ago
An Uncommon Woman is Frantz’s best novel so far, which is saying quite a lot. There are so many elements I love about this story: how the plot flows unerringly in a gripping narrative that captures the heart; how it is always true to period and place; how Frantz portrays with unsparing realism the tensions of frontier life, always roiling in the background like thunderclouds riven by heat lightning on a sweltering July day. I especially love how the characters, including the minor ones, are unerringly delineated so that each rises off the page to flesh and blood life. Especially so Tessa Swan and Clay Tygart, caught in “an uncertain dance,” as they are drawn powerfully to each other amid danger and heartbreak. The ending is perfect, as against all odds these two very uncommon people face a joyful future together in a consummation that will have readers sighing with delight.
sandralb 3 months ago
If you enjoy reading Historical Christian Romance, this would be a book for you. You won't be disappointed. Laura Frantz has a special ability to make a setting come to life. You feel like you are on the Virginian frontier, back in the 18th century with this courageous frontier woman, Tessa Swan. Clay Tygart is a war hero and the new commander at Fort Tygart, the Fort recently named after him. Captured and raised as a Lenape Indian, he was years later released after a treaty was signed. Clay is determined not to have any romantic entanglements. So he tries very hard not to notice the beautiful spirited Tessa. This is a page turner right from the start. I love the historical details that Ms. Frantz is so famous for. It is evident, the research she does for each of her stories. I always want to further explore history to learn more about the time and place she has written about. I received a copy of this book from Fleming H. Revell Company through NetGalley. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.
BlueJeansAndTeacups 3 months ago
***Well Written Story of Faith, Pioneers, Indians & Harsh Reality*** *************************************** This story is a deeply intense reminder of how difficult it was for the settlers to carve out a life for themselves in an often hostile territory where the land was harsh and the natives could be even harsher. In response to “the white man” encroaching on their lands, native people could be swift in trying to protect their way of life, which often meant brutal results. I cannot imagine living in that time when both sides gave up so much; “Everyone on the frontier had a chair that sat empty, a place unoccupied. Who would be next?” This story, for me, has a heaviness to it. It squeezed my heart acknowledging the ruthless reality of it all. Good historical details intertwined with faith here, giving me much to think on. I especially found Keturah interesting; captured as a young girl, raised as an Indian, trained in healing and then traded back to the white people as a grown woman. What a complex part of the story. ******I received an eCopy from the publisher through NetGalley for my honest review with no further compensation or expectation. All opinions expressed are my own.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Laura Frantz explores the theme of friendship in a very interesting way with Tessa Swan and Keturah Braam in An Uncommon Woman. Separated as young girls when Keturah is taken captive by the Lenape tribe, the two are brought together years later with a world of difference between them. Overcoming the differences that result from Keturah’s years with the natives, the two find a beautifully uncommon relationship that seems to be torn asunder yet again when Keturah chooses to return to Indian territory instead of staying at Fort Tygart with the Swan family. Frantz leaves no relationship unturned, however, and also tends the beautiful, though sometimes rocky, garden of the Swans. With five brothers of diverse personalities, a loving pa who is no longer with them, and a ma who lovingly binds their family together, Tessa cares for her family deeply. She also finds herself caring deeply for Colonel Clay Tygart, commander of the fort near her family’s homestead. So, what does it take for a man who believes himself cursed in relationships and too busy commanding a wilderness outpost to allow himself to love? Only an uncommon woman could do that, but it’s not that easy. Frantz cultivates a beautiful but untamed, adventurous, and uncommon story that brings these relationships together in a fulfilling and uplifting way. Thank you to the publisher for allowing me a copy of this book to read and review. The opinions stated in this review are my own and are my completely honest assessment.
amybooksy 3 months ago
An Uncommon Woman is yet another reason why Laura Frantz is one of my all time favorite and must read authors. It was great to be taken back in time to the eighteenth century, early American history. I felt like I was right there living the adventures and struggles Clay and Tessa were experiencing. An Uncommon Woman is getting a very well deserved five plus stars from me. Readers who love Revolutionary War era novels will not want to miss this one. I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.
Anonymous 3 months ago
AN UNCOMMON WOMAN by Laura Frantz is a treasure of a story. It has everything ~ engaging storyline, plot twists aplenty, characters that move into your home! All this presented in Frantz’s lovely prose with the sensitivity and insight into people and cultures that is rare and a pleasure to read. Once again Frantz has captured the tenor of the setting, and so skillfully planted her characters in that setting that it’s impossible to imagine them hailing from elsewhere. Tessa Swan, born and bred on the western Virginia frontier with five brothers is tough and resilient as a willow branch, competent and caring, and weary of having to live always looking over her shoulder and yearning for a pretty petticoat. Frantz draws Tessa ~ and indeed, all characters in this story ~ so intimately connected to their land and experiences, we feel we’re peering into the viewer of a time machine to meet these frontier folk and watch living history. The cast of characters is realistic and flawed, and so deftly drawn that even five brothers have clear, distinct personalities. For example, “Ross always dwelt on the light side,” while “Jasper was all pounds, and pence and position.” When Colonel Tygart from the nearby fort meets the Swan family, we watch as attraction sparks and grows between him and Tessa. Will these two souls, fractured by loss, be able to see each other as anything other than a threat? Will their environment and culture give them opportunity to develop any sort of relationship? Life is hard out there. Crops, animals, gardens, friendships, dreams—so many things die early on the frontier. Frantz builds her story world so well that readers feel the tentativeness of life on the edge of the wilderness. Everything but God must be held loosely. And her delightful way with words gives everything in this story a fresh and new view—setting, people, dilemmas, decisions. I collected quite a list of favorites to send her. I’d like to share them with you, but that would rob you of the joy of seeing them light up the pages as you read. Frantz has again given us a book that rings with truth, delights the sense, surprises with plot twists, and takes the reader on a journey that just might make you stay up reading later than you intended.