How Far the World Will Bend – review by Trudy Brasure
The Armitage Authors Network is thrilled to introduce How Far the World Will Bend by Nancy Klein for our first review.
If you haven’t read any of Nancy’s works, you’re missing out. Beloved by many for years at C19 and Wattpad for her Thornton and Guy stories, Nancy took the indie publishing plunge and released How Far the World Will Bend as an e-book in July.
This was the fanfiction-turned-published book that helped instigate the idea for this blog.
And what a story to be introduced to the wider North and South-loving public! This is not your traditional sequel to the story. Nancy loves to create variations of Gaskell’s tale, with new twists and turns.
As the title of her work hints, Nancy throws in some time-travel magic to swap Victorian Margaret for a slightly more modern-minded “Meg” from the 1920s. Meg finds herself in 1850s Milton with a mission to save the Master from a fateful riot. And this Margaret is not as resistant to the allure of the cotton mill master of Gaskell’s story that we all love to imagine looks and sounds just like Richard Armitage in a cravat!
I’ll admit that at first I wasn’t certain I would thoroughly enjoy a N&S variation with a time-twist, but it didn’t take long for me to be swept up by the unfolding story. And who am I to balk at a little science fiction added to a love story? With all the Outlander mania, time-travel romance is all the rage!
The romance between John and ‘Margaret’ develops a little differently than the original, and it’s entrancing to read. Nancy is a skilled storyteller, and she has a knack for evoking powerful images that linger in the mind. There’s a particular scene where a look across a crowded theater had my heart thudding, and then there’s an unforgettable scene where they finally kiss …
( no, not like this gentle kiss)
… and THIS kiss rates just a notch below spontaneous combustion on the passion meter! Phew!
There’s not much of the plot that I can reveal without spoiling the adventure of reading this creative story, but if you enjoy Thornton angst and intensity, I believe this story will deliver. How Far the World Will Bend also deftly pulls at the heartstrings of deep emotions about destiny and loneliness. This tale has the honor of being the only North and South fan fiction that ever made me cry. (But don’t worry – it all ends well!)
I’ve given this a five-star rating at Amazon. It was pure enjoyment to read. If you loved North and South and have a heart for romance, I recommend this piece of romantic drama highly.
How Far the World Will Bend by Nancy Klein (cover by Judy Worrall) is available at Amazon.
Trudy Brasure is co-founder of The Armitage Authors Network and is author of A Heart for Milton and In Consequence. The reviewer confesses that Nancy Klein is a personal fandom friend and her editor. However, no favors or moneys were exchanged for this glowing praise; the reviewer swears that she has not exaggerated her experience in reading this book.
HFTWWB was one of my very favorite fics on Wattpad, along with Nancy’s Guy fic Grant What I Wish. Thanks for a great review, Trudy!
It was my pleasure to promote Nancy’s work. I hope she continues to write!
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As someone who knew/ still knows nothing of the English TV show, I STILL loved Nancy’s book!
Thanks for leaving a comment. You’re right, you don’t necessarily need to know the original, it’s a fabulous romance story on its own.
i prefer to read text…because i like to write spontaneous comments on the page..perhaps this is the only series i have not read…sadly i do not like screen reading..i find it too impersonal..but i am glad creative works still abound..i wish you well.
Maybe we can encourage Nancy to make her story available as a paperback. 🙂
A wonderful recommendation, Trudy.
Nancy’s work, both for John & Margaret and Marian & Guy’s enthusiasts, is a must read. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve re-read this very creative spin on such a beloved tale.
Thoroughly engaging plot and faithful portrayal of Gaskell’s characters.A true joy!
Thanks for chiming in. You know it’s good when fellow writers enthuse about it! Her stories are definitely worth a re-read. I know MY favorite scenes!
Thanks for the push to finally start reading this — I did buy it a month or so ago — the first ten pages are really excellent!
I thought the beginning set-up was the slowest part of the story, so if you’re already hooked then I expect you’ll be enjoying your reading journey as things get more intense! Glad you’ve started it.
I was thinking about this, b/c you’re right that in terms of plot events it’s not exactly gripping. But making clear the protagonist’s feeling of frustration with her aunt right at the beginning — that’s a kind of killer move. Orphaned heroine who’s struggling slightly against the bounds. So she kind of makes up for the plot question with really transparent characterization. I wouldn’t call it subtle, exactly, but I *am* interested in the character now.
I think setting up an original story must be about the trickiest part. A lot of excellent books start out a little slow.
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