Reviewed by Sarah McCubbin
What happens when greed overtakes the better instincts of men? Things like love, honor and courage are handed over in favor of a few more coins, better lodgings and finer clothes. Truly valuable treasures, like family, are discarded for temporary prosperity and long term heartache. Some men will choose the narrow path. It will cost them dearly, but in the end, they are richer for it. It is a story such as this that Sarah Ladd tells in her book, The Curiosity Keeper.
Some men collect treasures and trinkets from around the world. Ian Gilchrist is one such man. When his most prized possession, a large ruby known as The Bevoy, turns up stolen, he begins a quest to secure its return. Without it, he faces financial ruin. Sending his son Jonathan Gilchrist to discover its whereabouts, a journey begins where two worlds collide. At the same time, a run-down London shop and purveyor of treasures is being run by Camille Iverness and her father, James. While it appears to run as a legitimate business, things aren’t always as they seem. James Iverness keeps his daughter in the dark about the many back-door transactions that never hit the books. When Camille is attacked in the shop in the evening hours, she is rescued by Jonathan as he is out investigating with a friend. This begins an unlikely relationship that eventually turns to friendship and holds the possibility of something more. When Jonathan has the opportunity to save the Bevoy and his own inheritance or save Camille, he chooses love over prosperity.
As the family desperately searches for the Bevoy, it becomes clear that it can easily represent anything that we expect to rescue us or that we value higher than family. Some people will pursue their dreams or money above all else and leave their loved ones in the dust, but there are others who realize you may have to actually give “The Bevoy” away to obtain what truly has value.
Some fiction tells a story and some paints a picture. The Curiosity Keeper falls into the latter category, while spinning a tale that was exciting and unexpected. Every scene was described in such detail that I felt like I was stepping into another world. The allegory for the Bevoy was present but not overbearing and the characters and their struggles were well developed and emotionally engaging. I highly recommend The Curiosity Keeper and hope to read more of Ladd’s work in the future.
Sarah McCubbin is a homeschooling and foster mom in NE Ohio where she resides with her husband and 7 children. In addition to reading great books, she enjoys gardening, traveling and blogging at Living Unboxed.
Review copy was provided by Thomas Nelson. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.