Short & Sweet Sunday: Overseas by Beatriz Williams

 In honor of Sunday – a day I reserve for reading and lollygagging – I bring you a short and sweet book review!

The gist: Meet Kate Wilson, an overworked, hyper-ambitious financial analyst. Caught up in a fast-paced, high-stress New York City lifestyle, she’s too immersed in her thankless job than to even consider falling in love. That is until she crosses paths with Manhattan’s most scrumdiddlyumptious British billionaire at a business meeting. Coveted by women and feared by Wall Street moguls, Julian Laurence embodies the trifecta of hotness: Power, smoldering good looks, and mystique. There’s something very odd about this golden haired It Boy. Not only does he avoid the vapid and soulless Manhattan party scene, he also seems to be from another time and place. He could have any woman in the world, but for some inexplicable reason he sets his sights on Kate. What is it about the shy bookish number-cruncher that has him so enamored?  Kate finds herself equally attracted and mystified by this curiously old-fashioned hunk of a man. What’s the deal with their instant attraction? And why does it seem as though they’ve met before? You’ll have to read the book to find out!

What I liked: The time travel. Despite its size, the book is a super-fast read. I was kept guessing about the whole time-space-continuum thing until the very last few pages.  The author expertly weaved together two narratives: one of Kate’s current situation in New York; the other of her time traveling adventures in World War I-era  France, where Julian serves as a dedicated officer in the British Army. As the story progressed, Kate’s mission to warn Julian about his impending death gets more desperate.  If he doesn’t heed her warning, she will be forced to roam the earth lost and alone.  

What irked me: I love a strong, fearless female protagonist just as much as the next girl, but Kate could have been a little bit more flexible with the whole money situation.  I get that she doesn’t want to be showered with material things, but she could have at least let him help her with her legal defense when her firm accused her of insider trading.  If I had a billionaire boyfriend, I sure would enjoy the safety net of all his riches in a crisis situation.  

This book is best read: On an airplane. I devoured this  400 + page tome while flying to and from Austin and California. The stern flight attendants, crappy watered down cokes and ear-splitting wailing babies didn’t faze me at all while I whizzed through the pages.

Favorite quote:  “There was really nothing like retail therapy for a girl with a train wrecked career and a near-paralytic case of sexual frustration.”

Casting call: If this book ever graced the silver screen, I could totally see the luscious Jude Law playing Julian. With his dark, golden hair and piercing eyes, he would be a perfect fit! Oh how I would love to hear those sweet nothings coming from his lips! As for Kate, I pictured Michelle Morgan, who plays Lou Flemming on Heartland. Her alabaster skin, long legs and raven locks perfectly match Kate’s classic good looks. Read my Book Boyfriend post for more Jude Law/Julian Laurence yumminess.

Overall:  Typically I like books in which romance is a secondary storyline. The swoony dialogue in Harlequin romances can be a little much. But this book is an exception! All of the plot threads – the time travel, the mystery, the paranormal romance – had me under a spell.  I was so lost in this book, I almost forgot to catch my connecting flight to Dallas! Or perhaps that was my subconscious telling me to not set foot in another busy, confusing airport. Either way, this book is worth reading!  Even though this is her debut novel, Beatriz Williams writes like a seasoned pro. Her lyrical prose and whimsical dialogue rivals that of Deborah Harkness (A Discovery of Witches) and Elizabeth Kostova (The Historian).

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