I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Keigan Wainwright is an asthmatic nineteen-year-old library page in a community college named after the late billionaire J. Howard Fox. A few weeks before Christmas of 2015, he is sent on an errand to retrieve books donated by the elderly Mr Donahue. One particular tome captures Keigan’s attention, but Mr Donahue sends him to a friend of his, Mr Sanderson, to find out where it came from. When Keigan visits said Mr Sanderson at the nursing home, the old man reveals puzzling information about the Wishing Cross Theme Park, the “Aurelia Belle” train and a wormhole between time, which only the book can close. Confused and sceptical, Keigan visits the park and boards the Aurelia Belle, only to somehow find himself in Wishing Cross again, but in 1880. Soon, he learns that the train, or “the special” as the townspeople call it, only appears once a month. Luckily, he manages to find employment at the local jeweller’s. Unfortunately, he also manages to fall in love with the daughter of the stationmaster, Marigold. Will Keigan and Marigold get their happy ending that would withstand the time? Or will the mistakes of the past and the future get in their way and destroy everything? And how does the book relate to Wishing Cross of 1880?
I admit – I requested “Wishing Cross Station” from Netgalley solely because of the beautiful colour – I just love purple! I mistakenly thought that the book took place in a steampunky setting. However, this short novel is “science fiction”, although the only predominant sci-fi element here is time-travel. If I had to determine its genre, I’d call it a Christmas Romance with a time-travel twist. Although I did feel like it had the same vibe as “The Prince of Mist” – the first in a series of YA novels by one of my favourite authors Carlos Ruiz Zafon. “Wishig Cross Station” is for an older audience, though.
This book is perfect for those of you who love beautiful writing, Christmas stories and insta-love. I enjoy the first two very much, but the latter is really not my thing – although Grace did manage to make it quite lovely. She is clearly a very good writer, and the book flows really well. I did have issues with Keigan using “Britishisms” like “bloody” on several occasions because I was convinced that people in the States didn’t really say that. I did, however, enjoy the book – it was a fairly quick read and a nice story. I’m not sure if it’s a “July” read, though – I reckon I would’ve enjoyed it even more around Christmas time! It’s one of those “cozy books” that you want to curl up with on Christmas Eve/Day, after you’ve eaten lots of food and want to relax. For me, “Harry Potter” is one of those books – yes, I am that person who rereads HP every year at Christmas.
I’d recommend “Wishing Cross Station” to fans of romance and lovely writing, as well as good Christmas reads. My rating is 7/10.
You might like “Wishing Cross Station” if you liked:
“The Prince of Mist” by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
“Tesla’s Attic” by Neal Shusterman
“Somewhere in Time”