The synopsis on the back of the book:
Judith Gladstone came to San Francisco after her parents died to find her last living relative, an aunt she has never met. Instead she has fallen head over heels in love with Caleb Coulter, her friend's brother. Caleb has promised to help Judith find her aunt, but she can tell he thinks of her only as a friend, and she struggles to hide her feelings.
When Caleb traces Judith's aunt to the wealthy Whitley family, Judith is reunited with her long-lost relatives. The truths she learns about her past and her parents are shocking and overwhelming, however, and the more she gets to know her new family, the more danger she uncovers. Someone does not want Judith in the picture, and they will do whatever it takes to get rid of her.
Genre: Christian Historical Fiction
Publisher: Bethany House Publishing
Goodreads Rating: 4.26
Why I Chose This Book
I read the first book in the Golden Gate Secrets Series, In Places Hidden. I wanted to continue the series and read more about Judith’s story.
First Initial Thoughts
In Dreams Forgotten is the second book in the Golden Gate Secrets series. I don’t think you need to read the first book in the series in order to read and understand this one. Tracie catches the reader up in the beginning of the book about what happened previously. This book picks up right after the events from the last book.
In this book we learn more about Judith’s story. Judith came to San Francisco because she found out that she has an Aunt in the family after her mother died. She is currently living with Camri, Caleb, and Kenzie. She has a big crush on Caleb - which I found rather adorable.
Caleb does help Judith find her family and Judith finds out she belongs to the very wealthy family, The Whitley’s. She grew up quite poor and can’t fathom belonging to such a society. When she meets her Grandmother, Mrs. Whitley she is soon overwhelmed by her past and the pressure to join her new family. Why did she grow up poor when her family was obviously well off? Also, why was Judith being targeted in her new home? Did someone want her dead to inherit the fortune/inheritance?
Tracie has a special talent in immersing the reader into the story. Even though the story is taken place in only a few places, she had a way of making you feel like you were there standing along the characters. Whenever The Whitley’s house was mentioned I kept thinking of Downton Abbey and it’s grand home. I would also feel overwhelmed like Judith!
Although I enjoyed In Places Hidden, I didn’t like it as much as Tracie's other novels. However, with In Dreams Forgotten, I felt like Tracie was back and this book was much better. Which is rare to find when the second book in a series is a little better than the first.
Judith in the beginning I found her to be timid and shy. We see her grow in the story into a woman who can stand for her own, and most importantly learn the grace and love of God. I also loved reading the relationship between her and Caleb develop. She had such a big crush on him in the beginning and it developed into love later on. I appreciated that Tracie did this - the natural progression of a relationship. We usually are smitten with another at first, and then that develops into love over time.
What I also enjoyed about this story, there wasn’t just the POV from Judith and Caleb in the story but also Camri, Kenzie, and Mrs. Whitley had their own chapters and point of view. I really like it when novels do this because you get a complete view of the story.
At first Judith feels all out of sorts with her new family. They are from another world, a world she never grew up in. She was not accustom to being taken care of hand and foot. I loved that she still stayed true to herself and didn’t let the wealth/greed overtake her. I absolutely despised her cousins though. They reminded me of those snobby wealthy people that had no time for anyone less than them.
I really enjoyed this story, especially the mystery and reading it unfold. It’s a story that reminds us to forgive and learn how to embrace new beginnings.
What I Recommend?
Yes, most definitely! Anyone who loved the first book in the series will enjoy this second book as well.
You can purchase the book —-> HERE
I am looking forward to reading the 3rd and final installment in this series about Kenzie’s story. That review should be up soon, hopefully!