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I recently joined Blackthorn Book Tours as a book reviewer, and I’m excited to post my scheduled review of KEEPERS OF THE GATE by E Denise Billups. It was selected as the Tour Guide’s Pick/Top Review which is pretty awesome!
About the book, from the publisher:
In 1779 Kanadasaga, Sullivan’s Expedition torches a Seneca village and many others, destroying the Iroquois Confederacy. Awakened from sleep, Pilan and Teka flee their blazing longhouse into the woodlands. After a soldier’s bullet thwarts their escape, Pilan vows to meet his beloved Teka again in another life.
Two hundred years later in present-day Geneva, New York, historical relics rise. Twilight Ends, a grand Victorian bed-and-breakfast run by the Newhouse family, sits on the property the Iroquois village used to thrive on.
After Twilight Ends’ long-standing matriarch Tessa Newhouse dies, her daughter and granddaughter, Skylar and Twyla, discover two artifacts under the maple tree in the backyard, and an ancient mystery as old as time begins to unravel.
But will they have the courage to follow the path their ancestors did?
The story is full of paranormal experiences, ancestry, past lives, reincarnation, soul connections, and time travel. I was immediately drawn to it because I love all of those things. It was also interesting to learn more about Native American culture and beliefs, specifically the Iroquois, in a subtle way. History is effortlessly and accurately woven in through dialogue and thoughts, making it an enjoyable and informative read.
The chapters are written in multiple points of view and different times spanning almost two-hundred-fifty years. The writing is beautifully descriptive. I could easily imagine the settings in my mind.
Twilight Ends is the setting of the story. It’s a family-run bed and breakfast, built on the land of the Iroquois people who lived there centuries ago. The land was once sought out and briefly owned by someone else, but it had long been returned to the original owners and has remained in the family ever since. The grounds are sacred and powerful and in danger once more of being taken. Twyla, the main character, begins to have strange visions and encounters in present day, and she finds clues and hidden secrets left by her late grandmother that are meant to help her figure out what’s going on. The characters’ experiences are detailed, awe-inspiring and often left a trail of goosebumps down my arms. They are rooted very deeply in their family and its history, so it’s no surprise when the ancient mystery Twyla uncovers begins a journey she must take to protect her ancestral lands.
“When the right people, stars, and time align, history reappears around Twilight.”
I really connected with Grams. She is kind, generous, and wise; she knows a lot more than she lets on. I also really felt the connection between her and Twyla.
The idea of souls being connected through multiple lives, circumstances bringing them together again and again, speaks to my heart. There was a lot to unpack with the information Twyla discovers and the fascinating and frightening encounters she experiences. When I turned to the last page I just wanted to keep reading more—it was quite the cliffhanging ending! I’m excited to find out what happens next in the second book.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book!
From the publisher:
E. Denise Billups is an author with a rare mixture of Southern and Northern charm. She was born in Monroeville, Alabama, and raised in New York City, where she currently lives, acquired an MBA, and works in finance and as a freelance columnist.
A multi-genre author of fiction, she’s published four novels—Keepers of The Gate: Twilight Ends (Book1), Kalorama Road, Chasing Victoria, and By Chance. She’s also written several supernatural short stories, Off the Grid, Ravine Lereux: Unearthing A Family Curse, The Playground, and Rebound. As an avid reader of mystery, psychological thrillers, historical fiction, and supernatural thrillers, she was greatly influenced by authors of these genres. Currently, she is writing a paranormal historical fiction novella to be released in late 2021.
Follow Her At:
Next Chapter Publishing: https://www.nextchapter.pub
Facebook: @E. Denise Billups
Goodreads: @E. Denise Billups
YouTube: @E. Denise Billups