Cover Image: Lost in Darkness

Lost in Darkness

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Member Reviews

I must admit that I don't tend to read a lot of gothic novels, and lately do tend to prefer much lighter reads... and yet, I found this to be a wonderfully written story that drew me in nonetheless. Michelle Griep does a wonderful job of creating these beautiful characters that draw the reader into the story, and into this time and place quite different than our own. While the style of this book was quite different than books I had read by the author in the past, her skillful storytelling came through every bit as beautifully just the same. 

While I don't believe I've ever personally read Frankenstein, I-like most- am fairly familiar with the story anyway... so seeing that this was inspired by it certainly piqued my interest. A Christian fiction read inspired by Frankenstein? Seemed interesting...and Michelle Griep truly did pull it off beautifully. If you enjoy historical fiction, this is certainly a unique read worth checking out. 

**I received a complimentary copy for consideration. All thoughts are my own.
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A beautiful story with a strong and courageous heroine. I couldn't put this down! Beautiful writing kept me turning the pages! Thrilling and romantic!
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Michelle Griep has a talent for writing raw and real gothic romance that never fails to pull me in and hold me spellbound until the very last page. Lost In Darkness definitely lived up to my expectations. 

In this Frankenstein-inspired tale, Amelia Balfour receives news that brings her dreams of sailing to Cairo as a travel writer to a sudden halt. Her father has died and her terrifyingly deformed brother has a chance at a surgery that could change his life forever, but he needs Amelia's help in the weeks leading up to the very risky, and potentially fatal day. After all, nobody has ever attempted such a surgery before. Surgeon Graham Lambert has been suspicious about his boss's strange behaviour since beginning his new job as an assistant physician in the often-absent man's practice. However, he still doesn't have enough evidence to prevent the shady doctor from operating on Amelia's brother, and he definitely didn't expect to fall in love with his new patient's sister.

Lost in Darkness is an epic novel filled with heart-pounding suspense and raw emotion. Griep dives deep into the often horrific treatments of asylum patients while reminding us that there is still light to be found even in the darkest places. I really liked both Amelia and Graham and found them relatable and even heroic, but Colin was my favourite. His life had been difficult and lonely, but he still had such a big heart. He may have struck horror in the hearts of everyone who looked at him (with the exception of his sister), but he continued to trust in God and to love those who would let him in.

I would give this novel 4.5/5 stars. I loved almost the entire book, despite it being outside of my usual genre, but was disappointed with the ending. I can see why the author ended it this way, but I still wish it could have been different. 

If you enjoy faith-filled gothic or historical romance, you won't want to miss Lost in Darkness. 

*I received a complimentary copy of Lost in Darkness through the publisher and NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own. My positive review is not required.
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Michelle Griep brings a emotional gothic tale with her latest Regency romance, Lost in Darkness.

I don’t quite know where to start with this book. My emotions are still swirling inside me and have not settled. Not that Lost in Darkness isn’t good. This novel is exquisite. And I don’t use that adjective lightly. In fact, I think the fact that my emotions haven’t settled yet is due to the fact that this book is so wonderful.

With this novel, Michelle Griep delves into the human condition, specifically our desire to be loved and cared for. In a way I can only deem ironic, she takes three characters who long to find their place in the world and lodges them deeply into the reader’s heart. Or at least that’s how it felt for me. Because the moment I was introduced to Amelia, I felt for her. I understood her. When I was introduced to Graham, I was drawn to him. And when Colin stepped onto the page, my heart broke.

In a unique twist on Beauty and the Beast, Griep brings us a story about a beautiful sister and her deformed brother. But what strikes me is that Colin is beautiful on the inside, even if he’s considered beastly on the outside.

I wasn’t prepared for the ending in more ways than one. Yet when I finally turned the last page, I found that the characters stayed with me. That the spiritual arcs about God’s love and our place in His hands resonated with me in a way I hadn’t expected. And while watching Graham and Amelia’s relationship bloom was both beautiful and satisfying, it was Colin that really gripped my attention.

Overall, Lost in Darkness is a poignant story that gothic and Regency romance fans will love.

(Note: I received a complimentary copy via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.)
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Michelle Griep wrote Lost in Darkness, a novel set in England in 1815.  It concerns Amelia Balfour, a world traveler, and writer of travel journals.  She has been summoned home by the last will of her deceased father.  He has instructed her to see that her brother Colin, who was born with a disfiguring disease, undergoes surgery to reverse his condition.  Colin reminds me of the kind beast in the fairy tale.

Mister Graham Lambert is a doctor and has aligned himself with a renowned surgeon.  This surgeon was retained by Amelia’s father to perform the surgery on her brother.  This surgery is highly innovative and dangerous.  Mr. Lambert is not comfortable with his partner’s supposed abilities as a surgeon.

The pre-operative testing and procedures are revolutionary and have not been used before.  Although this novel goes in-depth to explain the surgery and procedure and what it is supposed to accomplish, I, the reader, tended to agree with Mr. Lambert that this was a foolhardy process.  I was more interested in the characters and their portrayal than I was in the “medical” involvement.  

Readers who enjoy Gothic fiction will find this novel to their taste.  Although my taste does not run to Gothic novels, I did find this book entertaining although, for me, hard to read.
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Under Michelle Griep's creative pen, this Frankenstein inspired tale of a disfigured man and his sister has all the classic gothic vibes that will enthrall readers. Set against the atmospheric backdrop of the Regency era, Griep explores the misguided and sometimes evil treatment for patients found in asylums and those society ignored. With a fascinating plot filled with romantic tension, I found the faith thread to be compelling. The strong and timeless message that both darkness and light are hidden within humanity emanates from its pages in a most profound way. 

Great book for a cold dark night! 

I received a complimentary copy from the author/publisher and Netgalley. I was not required to write a review. All opinions expressed are my own.
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Gothic Christian romance may sound like an odd combination, but it worked! I must admit it did take me a while to get into this book, but it is worth persevering... I absolutely raced through the last third early one Saturday morning.
There were a few americanisms which were jarring, I can’t remember them all, but travelllimg blocks across the city stood out, and also a meal of fish and Yorkshire pudding just sounded bizarre.
Apart from these few things I did enjoy the story, particularly the more suspenseful and adventurous parts
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I only discovered Michelle Griep's books this year and she is already becoming a favorite author of mine.

Lost is Darkness is the second book I have read by her. Although this story is vastly different from her early 2021 release, it is just as incredible. Both the characters and plot of this historical, Gothic romance are rich and deep. Although the trials of their lives tempt the characters to become lost in the darkness of the enemy, they ultimately choose to embrace God's love, hope, and light to guide them.

Colin's strength of character captured my heart most. I had no idea how the author would resolve the monumental struggles the characters faced, leading up to the end. Despite some heartbreaking results, the conclusion was satisfying. This is a story I plan to read over again.

Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for a free EARC in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own
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Lost in Darkness is a gothic yet faith-filled retelling of Frankenstein, and author Michelle Griep turns the classic story into a delightfully romantic tale. Amelia is an independent travel-writer who is called home to care for her brother Colin, who hides from the world due to his size and deformity. Graham shares a medical practice with a peculiar—and perhaps dangerous—doctor who claims to have the cure for Amelia’s brother. As Graham and Amelia work towards a hopeful healing for Colin, they find love and peril in a suspenseful adventure. I loved Michelle Griep’s clever nods to the original Frankenstein story that were woven throughout the story and made for entertaining reading. However, she made the story her own by writing a tale with a perfect balance of suspense, romance, and spiritual truth. It was extremely well-done! I found some of the medical aspects of this book to be a little hard to stomach, but that is my personal preference, and it was never enough to deter me from finishing the book! I usually do not prefer darker tales, but this story had a dramatic yet wonderfully romantic ending that gave our hero and heroine their own happily ever after, so I was pleased with the ending. Although a departure from the other books I have read by Michelle Griep, I thoroughly enjoyed this story and recommend it for those who love to curl up with a suspenseful Christian fiction novel.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review purposes. My thoughts are my own.
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This story is one of my favorites by this author.  She tells about what doctors went through to try to do research in order to learn to help people better.  But this also showed the horrible things that doctors did to people in asylums since these people had no say in how they were treated.  This story will make you laugh and cry.  I did not want to put this book down because I needed to know what would happen to Colin.  I loved the use of Mary Godwin in the story.  This is an emotional and inspirational story.  I received a copy of this book from Barbour and Celebratelit for a fair and honest opinion that I gave of my own free will.
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An outstanding gothic novel! I love sibling stories, and this one takes you on an emotional rollercoaster with the fears they face. The intense choices Graham faces in his career make this a page-turner! Also, the romance left me swooning after such journey.
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I enjoyed the Gothic nature of the book - all the storms, possibilities of going mad, scenes in an asylum, fringe medical equipment, not to mention Colin's disfigurement and abnormal growth - and how the Gothic aspects were balanced with more light and hopeful themes - love, redemption, life. I also really liked the reference to "Frankenstein" and that Mary Shelley was a character; she didn't have a large presence in the book, but it was interesting to imagine her inspiration for her "monster".
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This was a fantastic magical story. With small hints of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and yet plenty of love and romance, it was the perfect spooky lite story for fall. This gothic love story is just so different from anything I have read before. I have read a few titles from this author and she always seems to take me on a new adventure that I have never experienced in a book. I look forward to more from this author. 

I truly thank netgalley and the publisher for the ability to read and review this book. All opinions are my own.
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Moving tale about a man who has an extreme form of neurofibromatosis in an age when even more charlatans than now were cruelly treating those who felt hopeless, his travel writer sister, and a former naval surgeon. Rather sad read.
I requested and received a free ebook copy from Barbour Publishing, Inc., Barbour Fiction via NetGalley.
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I did find the story compelling and the characters likable especially Colin. In spite of his deformities or maybe because of them he is a complex character. His insights of himself and others were profound at times. His sister, Amelia and Surgeon Graham Lambert were certainly interesting characters especially as their relationship evolved. However they were no less broken than Colin. Even the late Mr. Balfour was intriguing in his controlling sort of way. Then Dr. Peckwood made the perfect villain in this story. 

Sometimes the story was heavy handed on the God references especially from Amelia but her views seemed based on her cold harsh late father. Still for the time and setting as well as the dark tone of the book it works. Colin has a much more positive idea of the Bible and God, the Father which Amelia found too. I won’t say that I didn’t wish for a different conclusion especially for Colin. Yet it was all in all a gripping read.

The publisher through Net Galley provided a digital ARC. I have voluntarily decided to read and review, giving my personal opinions and thoughts.
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Michelle Griep transports her readers to Regency England once again, with the moody darkness pulled from the corners into the light.  With a Frankenstein inspired story, the broody side of people is brought to the front.  The characters are people I would love to have as neighbors, feeling realistic and finding God's leading through their weaknesses and questions.  What to do when you are given your dream but then get a letter from a distant Father asking for your time instead?  Amelia has fought the expected norm her entire life.  Her father never had any time or care for her.  She has left that loveless situation behind and become a travel writer, and a good one.  She has finally landed the job of a lifetime, a month in Cairo for the paper that should set her career at the top.  But as the excitement is still new, a visitor arrives with news of her father's death.  To top the stunning news, he wants her to take guardianship of her younger brother until a revolutionary surgery has been performed.  Colin was born with facial deformities and a large size, made worse by a terrible burn during childhood.  Now Amelia has the past and present in front of her and desperately searches for a way to fulfill both.  Amelia deeply loves her brother and knows the outer appearance, while terrifying to many, only covers the purest of hearts and softest of spirits.  This surgery promises to give Colin a chance to have society see him for just a man and not the monster he has always been tagged.  As long as the surgery date stays on schedule, Amelia will be able to tend her brother and leave for the adventure of a lifetime.
Graham Lambert is a surgeon, newly partnered with surgeon Uriah Peckwood who is scheduled to perform Colin's new and progressive surgery.  Graham believes all people deserve care and while wanting to progress medicine also understands there are limits to what man can do.  When he meets the Balfours, he is struck by Amelia's beauty and her inquisitive nature.  Her mind works so differently from the people Graham knows, he is fascinated from the start.  But as the treatments to prepare Colin for surgery proceed, Graham becomes concerned the end result may not be what brother and sister are hoping for.   Against his will, they become dear friends and Graham finds himself with more on the line than a mere patient or reputation.  As his feelings for Amelia grow, he must confront his past and what God is asking of him.  Through it all Colin is trying to separate what he wants from what his father demanded and his sister feels obligated to fulfill.  He has become content with his hermit life, learning to enjoy the simple things.  But the chance to have others accept him and the things he has learned is a strong pull and he agrees to the surgery after the long and painful treatments.  No one can understand the depravity of Uriah Peckwood though, until the time is too late.  What will happen with Colin and the surgery?  How far will a person go in order to be accepted or praised by society?
The romance sizzles and the setting comes to life under the gifted pen of Michelle Griep.  Her story took me to the heart of a family that struggled to find love and acceptance for whole they were and not what society deemed acceptable.  The levels a loved one will go to in order to protect family comes alive in this gripping tale.  Once I picked it up, it was oh so hard to put down.  Michelle Griep has outdone herself!  She has quickly become a must read for me.  I received a complimentary copy of this book.  Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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This author continues to create authentic characters and delve deep into the psyche of them to drive the plot of a richly imagined story that threads fiction with history. As with most historical fiction books, I'm always amazed at the amount of research that goes into them and the magical weaving of the authors to impart that wisdom without coming off as a boring history professor. The chemistry between characters had me engrossed until the end. Def recommend this book (plus I read it right before Halloween which just made everything better).
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Amelia Balfour was an ambitious young woman who was making a name for herself as a travel journalist when her father died and her plans were rerouted. Could she sacrifice her career for the sake of her brother? Graham Lambert’s word rang in her head, “Family, no matter the size of it, is precious. Never leave a loved one behind.” Amelia had her answer. 

This story is fast paced, captivating and often hair raising. Michelle Griep does an excellent job developing her characters whether good and kind endearing themselves to the reader or cruel and evil making the hair on the back one’s neck stand on end. I found myself yelling at Graham, Colin and Amelia not to fall for Peckwood’s underhanded tricks. 

I loved Colin’s interaction with Nemo and Nemo’s adoration of Colin. I was pleased that Amelia and Nemo both got their impossible dream.

Mary Shelly was a great addition to the cast and a good indication of where this story was going. I could not put this book down once I started reading. I was so glad that Amelia eventually  got the dream she was willing to sacrifice. Michelle Griep has that effect on me!

I received an ARC of this book from Barbour Publishing through NetGalley .
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Just as emotional and unpredictable as Frankenstein, but a completely different take. I loved the appearance of Mary Shelley.
Amelia is the sister of the disformed man who is to undergo an experimental procedure. There are things reminiscent of Frankenstein, but in the novel they inspire Mary Shelley to write her novel. I loved that spin on it. Graham is apprentice to Mr. Peckwood, the eccentric surgeon scheduled to operate on Amelia's brother. With a dark atmosphere this story still provides lots of hope. I loved this one and all the emotions it put me through.
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I enjoy Michelle Griep’s writing, and this was a very intriguing story. There was quite a bit of plot, and a spooky darkness that was great to read during the Halloween season. I think Colin was the best character, he had a very difficult life and he was still very likeable as a character. The romance was okay, but it was not the focus of the book for me. There is a lot of mention of God, the Bible, and many religious teachings or focus - I am not religious so unfortunately I didn’t care for this strong messaging but perhaps others would really enjoy this aspect.
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