The Last Train to Key West

“Maybe some would say my dreams are too small. Perhaps they would dream of railroads that go over the sea, great, wonderful things. Maybe others want riches and jewels, a chance to travel the globe. For me, this is enough: A corner of paradise in this wretched world that I am able to call my own.”

Thank you to Berkley Publishing for gifting me a copy of THE LAST TRAIN TO KEY WEST by Chanel Cleeton.

“In 1935 three women are forever changed when one of the most powerful hurricanes in history barrels toward the Florida Keys in New York Times bestselling author Chanel Cleeton’s captivating new novel.

Everyone journeys to Key West searching for something. For the tourists traveling on Henry Flagler’s legendary Overseas Railroad, Labor Day weekend is an opportunity to forget the economic depression gripping the nation. But one person’s paradise can be another’s prison, and Key West-native Helen Berner yearns to escape.

The Cuban Revolution of 1933 left Mirta Perez’s family in a precarious position. After an arranged wedding in Havana, Mirta arrives in the Keys on her honeymoon. While she can’t deny the growing attraction to the stranger she’s married, her new husband’s illicit business interests may threaten not only her relationship, but her life.

Elizabeth Preston’s trip from New York to Key West is a chance to save her once-wealthy family from their troubles as a result of the Wall Street crash. Her quest takes her to the camps occupied by veterans of the Great War and pairs her with an unlikely ally on a treacherous hunt of his own.

Over the course of the holiday weekend, the women’s paths cross unexpectedly, and the danger swirling around them is matched only by the terrifying force of the deadly storm threatening the Keys. “

When planning out my review for this book, I had to stop myself from wanting to write ‘Chanel Cleeton is one of the best historical fiction authors out there and you should read everything she writes. The end’; because what kind of a book review would that be? But, in all seriousness, Chanel Cleeton is an incredibly talented author and I love all of her books. When I received THE LAST TRAIN TO KEYWEST, I could not wait to dive in.

Cleeton has the way of transporting the reader directly into the storyline and to the destination that she is writing about. I loved reading this book and I didn’t want the storyline to end. Each one of the women that this book focused on were extraordinary in their own way. I loved the alternating perspectives of the women that each chapter offered.

While I was reading, I kept wondering if all of the women would connect together in some way and it wasn’t until the last few chapters that everything fell into place and I was left thinking, “Wow, I mean wow, I did not see it all coming together in that way”. It was truly spectacular writing and cemented the fact that I will always be a huge fan of Chanel Cleeton and her beautiful writing.

I would like to mention that there are some scenes of domestic violence referenced throughout this book. If you have any concerns about the content, please let me know so we can chat about it.

Thank you, Chanel Cleeton and Berkley Publishing for gifting me this beautiful book.

THE LAST TRAIN TO KEY WEST was published on June 16, 2020. I highly recommend adding this novel to your reading list, you won’t be disappointed.

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