The Mine by John A. Heldt

the mine

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In May 2000, Joel Smith is a cocky, adventurous young man who sees the world as his playground. But when the college senior, days from graduation, enters an abandoned Montana mine, he discovers the price of reckless curiosity. He emerges in May 1941 with a cell phone he can’t use, money he can’t spend, and little but his wits to guide his way. Stuck in the age of swing dancing and a peacetime draft, Joel begins a new life as the nation drifts toward war. With the help of his 21-year-old trailblazing grandmother and her friends, he finds his place in a world he knew only from movies and books. But when an opportunity comes to return to the present, Joel must decide whether to leave his new love in the past or choose a course that will alter their lives forever. THE MINE follows a humbled man through a critical time in history as he adjusts to new surroundings and wrestles with the knowledge of things to come.

Publisher and Release Date: John A. Heldt, February 2012

RHL Classifications:
Time and setting: Seattle, Washington: The present and 1941
Genre: Time Travel/Historical Romance
Heat Level: 1
Reviewer rating: 5 stars

Review by Vikki

I thoroughly enjoyed this excellent read. I expected an adventurous tale with some romantic elements, yet what I found was so much more. While quite different from my usual choice of reading pleasure, this book kept me intrigued from the first page to the last. Mr. Heldt’s intricate development of both characters and story astounded me. I’ve read time-travel novels in the past, but none that kept me so spell-bound by its originality.

When twenty-one year-old Joel Smith insists on exploring an abandoned mine, he stumbles through a portal in time when six planets align, and he finds himself in May 1941 with a cell phone he can’t use and money he dares not spend. He pawns his watch and catches a ride on a western bound train which takes him to Seattle where he meets Tom Carter, a young man he saves from a beating.

Tom’s grateful father offers Joel a place to stay and a job at his furniture store. Through this friendship, Joel meets his feisty grandmother. He tries to avoid any pit-falls that could shake up the future, but along the way he encounters Grace Vandenberg and his life will never be the same. Even though Grace is engaged to another man, they cannot resist their instant attraction to each other.

When Joel reads an article in the newspaper, he finds out that there will be another alignment of the planets that will allow him to return to his own time. Will he take the opportunity and leave Grace, a woman he has fallen in love with, or will he stay and damn the consequences?

I’m so pleased I had the opportunity to read this wonderful tale of a love that spans time and space. Mr. Heldt is an excellent storyteller who knows how to draw his readers in and how to keep them sitting on the edge of their seats. This is one of the best books I’ve read in quite a while, and I read a lot of books in many different genres. If you’re looking for a story with depth and plenty of emotion, then you’ll want to read this one.

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