A young woman born in the wrong reality. A destiny that will lead her into the past. And a love so enduring it reaches across time – and existence itself – to bring her home.
I hosted Mary, Everything by Cassandra Yorke as a spotlight with Bewitching Book Tours in July, and now I’m back with a review! Thank you to Cassandra for contacting me to request this and granting me access to the book.
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About the Book
The Flapper Covenant Book One
by Cassandra Yorke
Published 30 March 2020
Cover Artist: Cassandra Yorke
Genre: Historical Fiction, Time Travel Romance, LGBTQIA+
Page Count: 414
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A gripping tale of best friends and romance, sorcery and survival, at the dawn of the Roaring 20s.
While I hope you enjoy it, I promise you will never read another story like it. It’s from the heart, it’s gritty and lurid – and below the action, it’s real.
A young woman born in the wrong reality.
A destiny that will lead her into the past.
And a love so enduring it reaches across time – and existence itself – to bring her home.Courtney is a lonely undergrad at secluded Braddock College in 2004, working a drowsy summer job in the Archives. Assigned to a new project, she becomes haunted by a college yearbook from the 1920s – filled with familiar faces and memories of times she never experienced. A chance encounter with a mysterious girl named Sadie – dressed in long-outdated clothes – alters her reality. But if you were never meant to be born, that reality can expel you like an infection – or kill you outright. While Courtney struggles against forces she cannot comprehend, a psychopathic stalker smells blood and closes in for the kill.
Sadie, now in 1921, races against the clock to save her friend, joined by some remarkable allies – an American combat sorceress and veteran of World War I, an enigmatic professor who specializes in piercing the veil between realities, and two young women who insist they’re Courtney’s oldest friends – one of them even claiming to be her truest love.
Time is running out for Courtney, and a terrifying wilderness – haunted by the dead from centuries past – may hold the key to her salvation. But none who enter have ever returned…
Cassandra Yorke’s groundbreaking debut brings Magical Realism home to the Midwest in an explosive new style, blending midwestern gothic and historical fiction with a warm lesbian love story to create a riveting, deeply immersive epic you won’t be able to put down. It’s the world of Boardwalk Empire and Gatsby, with an urgent, immersive narrative about what it means to belong, what it means to be hated, what it means to be loved, and ultimately what it means to come home.
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Check out my previous post for an excerpt!
My Rating: 4 Stars
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I was granted access to Mary, Everything by the author, Cassandra Yorke, in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts are my own and my review is honest.
Although this book is unlike anything I’ve ever read before, it definitely screams “timeslip” time travel subgenre to me. The plot fades back and forth between 1921 and 2004 as our poor entangled heroine slips back and forth so frequently that you really have to pay attention to the contextual setting clues and look for the presence/absence of the other main characters to keep the timeline straight in your head. This means it’s interesting and gripping, certainly no room for dull moments, but it also means this isn’t going to be the most relaxing read. Don’t read this one tired!
I absolutely love the complicated and yet perfect-fit simple relationship that blossoms between Courtney and Sadie. These two are so well-matched, and this was such a well-written sapphic romance that explores all the facets of romance, not just physical attraction and lust. These two ladies love everything about one another, and it’s beautiful. Can I also just say it’s so refreshing to read a romance that doesn’t stumble over miscommunication plot points left, right and centre? I mean yeah, it’s women, we talk about our feelings, but oh my goodness I didn’t even know how much I was longing for a romantic couple that actually just talk to each other.
With that said, Courtney and Sadie are perhaps too well-matched, or at least the writing style makes it feel that way. They’re so perfect for each other that their narrative voices come across sounding the same for quite a good chunk of the early chapters as the reader is also getting oriented with the timeslips. This was a little jarring to me, mostly because Yorke simultaneously demonstrates how good she is at writing vastly different characters. Everyone else is a unique voice, and everyone the leading ladies don’t like I instantly, viscerally hated (as I’m sure I was supposed to.) Compared to all of those different voices and how powerfully I was made to feel about them, the initial sameness of Courtney’s and Sadie’s voices felt out of place.
In terms of historical/period accuracy, I do happen to be a former undergraduate history student whose studies did cover the “inter-war period,” and everything seems to be as it should be in the 1921 end of the timeline. I love the post-war high-life buzz in the atmosphere and the descriptions of all the vintage fashion! As for the 2004 end of the timeline, that was high school for me, so for as much as someone who was a teenager at the time can attest to the accuracy of this representation of a women in her 20s that year, that all felt pretty spot on to me as well.
If you’re looking for a fast-paced sapphic adventure with history and magic thrown in, you owe it to yourself to check out Mary, Everything!
About the Author
Cassandra’s life was changed forever when she was taken captive by a haunted college yearbook as an Ohio University senior in the summer of 2004. Ten years later, she started work on Mary, Everything to make sense of the experience. Bathed in summer sunlight and crafted from early 2000s punk rock, Cassandra’s goal is more than just telling a story – she wants to take you captive, too.
She lives in central Ohio with her wife, house rabbits, and video games. And of course, her own ghostly memories.
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Comments on “Mary, Everything by Cassandra Yorke – 4 Star Book Review”
Thank you so much, Jenna. <3 Your review was an absolute delight to read!