Rebecca Hartford and her distant cousin, Jordan Davis, are picnicking on their newly inherited land when Jordan tries to strangle her. Rebecca travels through the white light and when she awakens she believes she is dead and has been sent back in time to witness her ancestors' lives.
Sloan Travers (Jordan's lookalike) finds the bruised woman in the grove. Her striking resemblance to Leda Radburn (a woman he once loved) both repels and attracts him.
Rebecca cannot convince the earthy and macho Sloan that she is from the future. The only one who gives credence to her claim is Painted Elk, a mystic native whom Sloan trusts.
Painted Elk warns Rebecca and Sloan that they must search their own hearts before he can reveal his knowledge of Rebecca's mission.
Despite their resistance, Rebecca and Sloan fall in love. Rebecca is willing to sacrifice her 1990s life for this Victorian rancher and Sloan is willing to disregard Rebecca's "eccentric" behavior.
Rebecca knows she must contact her great grandmother Lea if she is to help Sloan deal with his violent Civil War memories, sense of betrayal and anger.
Victoria Chancellor works magic with her clear, crisp prose, drawing the reader deeply into the story. She weaves history, past and present together making this a truly believable and heart-wrenching tale. (April, 400 pp., $4.99)