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Customer Reviews for Bethany House Into the Whirlwind

Bethany House Into the Whirlwind

After her father's death, Mollie Knox takes over his watchmaking company and uses her head for business to solidify the good name of the 57th Illinois Watch Company. Her future looks bright until the night her beloved city is destroyed in the legendary Great Chicago Fire. With her world crumbling around her, Molly must do whatever it takes to save her company in the aftermath of the devastating fire.

Zack Kazmarek is an influential attorney with powerful ties to the political, mercantile, and ethnic roots of Chicago. His only weakness is Mollie Knox, a woman who has always been just beyond his reach. However, all bets are off after the fire destroys Chicago, and Mollie is in desperate need of assistance. Just as Zack finally begins to pursue the woman he loves, competition arises in the form of a hero from her past who can provide the help she needs to rise from the ashes.

Average Customer Rating:
4.404 out of 5
4.4
 out of 
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49 out of 5294%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Into the Whirlwind
Review 1 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Exciting Historical Set against Chicago Fire

Date:June 12, 2014
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MaryAnn
Location:OR
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
A young woman oversees a unique watch factory in 1871 Chicago. The obstacles Mollie Knox has faced running the company her father started pale amidst the devastation of the Great Chicago Fire. How can Mollie survive, and what will happen to the Civil War veterans they employ?
Zack Kazmarek, an important attorney employed by Hartman’s Department Store, appears to be Mollie’s savior—rescuing her during the fire and supervising the offer to buy her business. But can he be trusted? The wealthy Polish man came from humble origins, which his parents continue to maintain.
The unlikely pair are drawn together, yet another suitor emerges to try to win Mollie’s hand. Should she choose the war hero her father’s company admires who sweeps in and comes to her aid or the lawyer who sacrifices himself for her without her knowledge? Or should she remain a single businesswoman and keep the watchworks going? Challenges abound, but Mollie manages to work her way through them and grow ever stronger in this exciting historical novel.
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Review 2 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Not Quite Swept Away

Date:May 1, 2014
Customer Avatar
theLadyLeigh
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Camden’s newest offering centers around Mollie Knox, single daughter of a Civil War veteran and owner and proprietor of her father’s beloved 57th Illinois Watch Company. Just like the exquisite watches she lovingly assembles Mollie is a woman of delicate parts moving precisely in time and according to expectation. Zach Kazmarek is the exact opposite of Mollie. Raised from humble immigrant beginnings to become one of the city’s most prominent attorneys Zach is bold, passionate, and not afraid to get what he wants; working for one of the city’s biggest and best department stores he’s developed a reputation for just that. For three years Mollie and Zach have met for strictly business purposes, she thinking him cold and unfeeling; he thinking she was the most beautiful creature on earth. After three years neither really knows the other but that is about to change….
Set against the background of the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 Mollie and Zack are thrown together in a way they never expected. Amidst the chaos of that night and the following weeks Mollie is carried away on a whirlwind of events and emotions that throws her tightly ordered world into a tailspin that she may never recover from… Conflicted about what she truly wants from life, and from Zack, Mollie struggles to rebuild her company and her life and learns that sometimes the only way to survive the winds of change is to embrace them.
Having fallen in love with Camden’s work in the stellar “The Rose of Winslow Street” I have followed with interest her subsequent releases these last few years. Going into this book I had only a little knowledge about the Great Chicago fire and found many of the details she shares truly interesting as she, from the first pages, grabs the readers hand and pulls them along into the fire. In many places it really felt like you were there with Mollie, Zach, and little Sophie, whom they pick up during their flight from the city. I don’t know why, but in the past when I think of the Fire I think of the great destruction that accompanied it- but I’ve never considered what that meant personally, logistically, and financially to the people affected. Through Mollie and Zach’s eyes you really get a picture of how the city was rebuilt and changes made and it brings to the reader a personal connection to an event from long ago.
Over all my feelings on this particular Elizabeth Camden novel are mixed. There are things I really liked about the book like the time period, the neat way the historical info was presented, and the character of Zach who has a strong presence throughout. But there are things that I felt left something to be desired. I would have loved to dig a bit more into Mollie for example, though she is the main character and the story is told mainly from her perspective there were times that I felt disconnected from her- like she wasn’t telling the whole truth with a particular thought or action. There were times that I questioned her sincerity in what she thought or did with her relationships with Colonel Lowe vs. Zach and how she treated both of them. In both cases it seemed that the relationship was more about her then about two parties and equal ground. At the end I got annoyed because when she’s ready for what she wants she goes all angsty over whether or not she can get it, and get it when she wants it and I don’t find that attractive in any heroine.
Having said that however, I realize that the issues that I have with Mollie’s character are not a deal breaker for this book. Despite her being more indecisive than I would have liked for a woman with the futures of others in her hands I couldn’t really dislike her either. Mollie finds her security in her routine and in knowing what to expect from herself and others- and I can’t say that I have never been that way myself. What Mollie learns however is that with the right people by your side the storms of life are nothing to fear.
Final Rating: 3.5 stars
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review and opinion of the product.
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Review 3 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Into the Whirlwind by Elizabeth Camden

Date:January 18, 2014
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Mollie Knox, owner of the 57th Illinois Watch Company, employs veterans who served with her father in the 57th Illinois Infantry during the Civil War. These veterans are talented artisans who craft high-end watches, but to Mollie, they are family. Mollie's contract with Hartman's, a fine department store, affords her a measure of financial security until Zack Kazmarek, Hartman's handsome, yet intimidating attorney, issues an ultimatum that Mollie must sell her business to Hartman or lose her contract. Unexpectedly, the Great Chicago Fire ravages the city, destroying tangible property and intangible dreams. When famed Colonel Lowe, leader of the 57th Illinois Infantry, helps Mollies rebuild, Mollie is torn between the kind, stable Colonel Lowe and the passionate, unstable Zack Kazmarek.
Into the Whirlwind by Elizabeth Camden is a stand-alone novel set in nineteenth-century Chicago. Admittedly, I don't know many details regarding the terrible tragedy of the Great Chicago Fire and Chicago's period of rebuilding; however, Camden's depictions seemed authentic and realistic. Into the Whirlwind has a solid plot that quickly hooked my attention and carried it through to the end of the novel. I found it refreshing that the romance elements of the story kept me guessing who Mollie was going to end up with. I recommend this book to lovers of historical romances.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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Review 4 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Cute

Date:December 10, 2013
Customer Avatar
Lucy
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Mollie Knox owns the 57th Illinois Watch Company and is looking at a bright future until the Great Fire destroys Chicago. Zack Kazmarek is an influential attorney for a store that sells Mollie's watches. He usually gets what he wants, but Mollie doesn't let him get his way. After the Great Fire, Mollie and Zack have to work together to save Mollie's company and find out that each person is very different than the other originally thought.
I loved Into the Whirlwind, by Elizabeth Camden. It was the right amount of cute romance story and historical facts. Elizabeth Camden is one of my favorite authors and she once again did a great job writing this story. It was a fairly quick read, but it kept my attention the whole time and I felt like a created a bond with the characters.
I was given this book for free from Bethany House Publishers through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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Review 5 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Terrific Read

Date:November 16, 2013
Customer Avatar
Faye
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Mollie Knox has found a purpose in following in her father's footsteps by making famously intricate watches, but when the Great Chicago Fire takes almost everything from her she finds herself relying on the one man she swore she'd never trust.
Zach Kazmarek has made a name for himself as a lawyer to be reckoned with, from a humble home he has worked for everything that her has. Zach has admired Mollie from afar for years and now that he has the opportunity to help her, will he keep her best interests in mind?
A wonderful historical novel set during the aftermath of the Great Chicago Fire, as people dusted themselves off and set about the hard task of rebuilding. I loved how this book showed how the best and the worst in people can be brought out through these times, and dealt with parts of the human condition.
I immediately admired Mollie, for her hard working spirit, love and dedication to her friends. This book was filled with so much history and a vast array of characters whose lives were forever changed by the fire, and many who became stronger because of it.
This was a wonderful story with so many characters who endeared themselves to me over the course of the story and they grew.
Overall, another terrific book from Ms. Camden. I could tell that a lot of research went into this book and I felt that it realistically showed what was going on during the aftermath of the fire. Great book!
Thank you to Ms. Camden for providing me with a review copy of this wonderful book, in return for me expressing my honest thoughts and opinions.
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Review 6 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Historical fiction with depth and emotion

Date:November 1, 2013
Customer Avatar
Carole Jarvis
Location:Jonesboro, Georgia
Age:Over 65
Gender:female
Into the Whirlwind is a turbulent love story set amidst the rubble of Chicago as Mollie endures the challenge of survival and the triumph of rebuilding the city. This stand-alone novel is steeped in history and filled with rich characterization, emotional impact, and beautiful prose. I greatly enjoyed this character-driven drama and will be reading more of Elizabeth Camden's work.
There's often a tendency to skim over descriptive passages, but not so in this book! Elizabeth excels at capturing the feel of a historical event, bringing it to life and making you feel as though you are there. The story begins on October 8, 1871, as the raging Chicago fire is destroying everything in its path: "The fire had burned a four-mile path along Lake Michigan that was almost a mile wide. More than a hundred thousand people had been left homeless, and half the businesses in the city had been burned out." One of the disastrous results of the fire was the collapse of the local insurance industry, and I loved how Elizabeth creatively worked this into her narrative through Zack's efforts in reform.
Mollie and Zack are strong leading characters. 26-year-old Mollie Knox excels at business and runs her father's 57th Illinois Watch Company. She is a hardworking, compassionate leader who trains fifteen wounded veterans from her father's military unit in the art of high-end watchmaking and devises ways to keep the company afloat.
Zack Kazmarek is an attorney for Hartman's, the only store in Chicago that could afford to carry Mollie's expensive watches. Zack is a bold, confident man, protective of those within his care - and he embodies characteristics that we love in a hero - he is hardworking, honest, loyal and kind. It was especially touching to see how he loved and cared for his Polish immigrant parents.
While the fire taught Zack how important Mollie was to him, she wasn't ready for a relationship. "Zack was a wild, unpredictable force of nature, while she lived in an orderly world of ticking watches and production schedules." And to further complicate matters, the handsome and gentlemanly Colonel Richard Lowe comes sweeping in to rebuild Mollie's company. "He was Lancelot without the pesky adultery problem."
As much as I admired Mollie as a caring employer who struggled to succeed in business because she was a woman, she wasn't my favorite heroine. I felt that she made some bad decisions out of pride, with heartbreaking results in one instance, and I cringed at her often harsh, unfeeling words spoken to Zack in anger. On the other hand, I felt that Mollie not being a "perfect" character added to the depth and enjoyment of this story.
There is a strong cast of supporting characters, especially in the wounded veterans who work with Mollie. I also came to love Sophie, the young girl rescued by Zack and Mollie during the fire. "Extraordinary in her insolence" at first, she blossomed when given the opportunity to find purpose in life through hard work and being part of a team.
Into the Whirlwind is a fascinating and engrossing story that I highly recommend to all readers.
This book was provided by Bethany House in exchange for my honest review.
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Review 7 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Not as good as I thought it would be.

Date:October 29, 2013
Customer Avatar
Mossy
Location:Louisville, KY
Age:Under 18
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
I have read all of Elizabeth Camden's books. Into the Whirlwind was my least favorite by far. The first part of this book was exciting because it was about the Great Fire of Chicago. After that was over, nothing else exciting really happened. This book was not really bad; it was just not as good as her other books. I would still recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical Christian fiction.
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Review 8 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Another exceptional book from Elizabeth Camden

Date:October 26, 2013
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Donna W
Location:Hamilton, OH
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I purchased "Into the Whirlwind" by Elizabeth Camden and once I got started, I couldn't put it down. So much to love about this book!!! Vivid descriptions of the characters with Zach so passionate I could feel him simmer and Mollie wound so tight at times I wanted to shake her; and interesting details of the historical Chicago Fire that brought it to life once again in the pages of this book. My favorite authors have a unique ability to draw me into the time and place visually and the storyline emotionally. This is the case with every Elizabeth Camden book, and I have them all. Read "Into the Whirlwind" .....then read the rest!!
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Review 9 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A memorable read

Date:October 19, 2013
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KavR
Location:Canada
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Another masterpiece by one of my favourite authors. Camden has the incredible ability to breathe life into history. Fascinating details of 19th century Chicago and the great fire is an enthralling background to this compelling story. Rife with contrasting emotions, Mollie and Zack and a cast of intriguing secondary characters make this book memorable. I was committed from the very first page, anguishing over the gnarly bits, praying over the hopeful ones, and cheering at ending that left me cheering. An exceptional read for historical romance lovers everywhere.
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Review 10 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Well Written Historical Fiction

Date:October 16, 2013
Customer Avatar
JMac
Location:Canada
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Chicago 1871 - Mollie Knox, expert watchmaker and owner of the 57th Illinois Watch Company, is enjoying the benefits of the city's wealth. Her business dealings with Louis Hartman's grand Chicago department store assure her of a market for her fine watches. But change is in the wind. When disaster strikes, who will she turn to? Who can she trust?
This is the second book I have read by Elizabeth Camden and I enjoyed it very much. The author has obviously put a lot of research into the historical background of the story and I appreciate that. I enjoy historical fiction that uses authentic details and likely scenarios rather than over romanticising the past. I'm not sure how many women owned businesses of the scale of Mollie's watch company in America in 1871, but the explanation that her father began the company and left it to her when he passed away seems plausible enough.
The characters are quite interesting and there is good character development even among the secondary figures. There is one character who is so annoying you dislike her almost right away but her attitude is very fitting to the action going on.
The novel has a strong romantic storyline but that is not the only focus of the book. It is "Christian" fiction but unobtrusively so. There are a few mentions of prayer, faith, and the Creator. This is an interesting historical fiction read with a clean romance story.
Please note: I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in return for my honest review.
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Review 11 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Fine historical fiction!

Date:October 12, 2013
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homesteading
Location:rural NC
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
In high school, I disliked History class but if I had a teacher who could tell a story like Ms. Camden, I’m sure I would have excelled. Into the Whirlwind takes us through the horror of the Great Chicago Fire and the months afterward. From page one the stage is set, the cast is ready and the heat is on.
Mollie Knox is a character who has resilience, determination and a huge capacity to love. These traits are echoed throughout the story and shown in eloquent detail. From her business dealings to her personal tragedy, she is a woman to be admired.
Zack Kazmarek is another fantastic male character. Really, I don’t know how the author does it. From the first scene to the last, he captured my heart. The strange thing is, I can’t “see” him. Even after the intricate description of his features, his looks elude me. It’s his heart I envision. His compassion, his spirit, his all-encompassing love for his family and for Mollie is what speaks to me.
The scene of the fire was vivid and brilliant. I could feel the heat, the embers, the overwhelming fear while Mollie and Zack ran in and out, weaving through the streets while walls of flames blazed in the night. I felt the chill of the water as they took refuge and the sorrow as they watched their beloved city burn. My heart cried for the people who experienced that awful night all those decades ago. They must have felt hopeless and in total despair. But they rose from the destruction and rebuilt, just like Molly did in the book, to be better than before.
I loved this book. It was difficult to put down for long. There are many wonderful characters and moments that take place in this beauty from ashes story, it is impossible for me to cover all of them. Into the Whirlwind is a perfect combination of drama and romance with a delicate spiritual thread. I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys historical fiction with a Christian influence.
Bethany House provided a copy for review purposes only. I am under no obligation to write a positive review, only my opinion of the book.
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Review 12 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

It's a whirlwind all right!

Date:September 9, 2013
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The Quiet Eccentric
Location:Canada
Age:Under 18
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Elizabeth Camden has now officially earned a place in my list of top authors! I mean, with her last book, "Against the Tide," I was pretty much sold but this story sealed the deal.
It was fantastic. I am in love with Zack Kasmarek and I found my self yelling at Mollie far too often. There are some words that get saved for frustrating heroines and I'm afraid I used them rather fluently on poor Mollie.
Okay, this may be painting the wrong picture... It wasn't that she was an awful character, it's just that I was so into the story that I was getting involved with every little detail. The history aspect of this novel was fascinating and the author must have labored many hours to bring every bit of burnt out Chicago to life for us.
This is a book I would highly recommend to anyone who loves a good book; not only historical romance but lovers of all fiction.
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Review 13 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Great Book

Date:September 9, 2013
Customer Avatar
Jess88
Age:Under 18
Gender:female
Into The Whirlwind by Elizabeth Camden
It's October 1871 little does Mollie Knox know her life will never be the same again.
Mollie Knox is the owner/manager of the 57th Illinois Watch Company. When one of the best lawyers in the city- Zack Kazmarek desires to meet with her to discuss a potential business venture she can't help but be scared stiff. What does he have to say? Have they done something wrong? This is the first of Elizabeth Camden's books I have read but it definitely won't be the last! I couldn't stop reading! Mollie is like no character I have ever 'met' before. She is loyal, Stubborn and determined to do whatever it takes to keep her father's company afloat, even through the Great Chicago Fire. When she discovers two shocking secrets, one kept by the lawyer for three years and the other from her fathers trunk. she is at a loss. Where will she go from here? Who should she trust?
* Book has been provided courtesy of Bethany House a division of Baker Publishing Group.
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Review 14 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

great Christian Historical Fiction Read!

Date:September 7, 2013
Customer Avatar
quiltnmama
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Zack Kazmanek has worked his way up to a man of wealth and position. He has a job to do for his employer and Mollie is holding things back. Will he stand for truth and follow his heart or will he compromise and do what his employer is paying him to do. Can the friendship between Zack and Mollie survive?
I truly enjoyed the suspense of Into the Whirlwind along with the historical setting of this book. I have read others by Elizabeth Camden and enjoyed them so when this one came available to review, I requested it quickly. I was not disappointed. If you enjoy Christian, historical fiction and romance, this is worth the read.
I was provided this for free by the publisher, Baker Publishing Group/ Bethany House, in return for my honest review. All thoughts are my own.
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Review 15 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A great story during the Chicago fire

Date:September 5, 2013
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
While I thoroughly enjoyed Into the Whirlwind by Elizabeth Camden, it was a bit slower paced than I typically prefer. Ms. Camden did an excellent job of showing us the fear and confusion generated by the Chicago fire. I'm thankful I wasn't there. She also did a wonderful job of portraying the difficulties of women doing business in that time frame. Having a man in her life, whether a friend, brother or husband, allowed greater access to many necessities. I'm glad times have changed so much--thanks to the many people like Mollie Knox.
***I received this book from the publisher/author for purposes of review. The above is my honest opinion.***
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Review 16 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Excellent, Fast-Paced Read

Date:September 3, 2013
Customer Avatar
Monica H
Location:Atlanta
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Into the Whirlwind is a new novel by Elizabeth Camden. The story centers around the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 and focuses on the effect the fire had on two individuals – Mollie Knox and Zack Kazmarek. Mollie is the owner of the 57th Illinois Watch Company, a business she inherited from her late father and one that employees many of the Civil War veterans he fought with. Zack is a powerful attorney who came from humble beginnings. He is a formidable figure in the Chicago business community who is seemingly intimidated by only one person – Mollie.
This is the second novel I have read by Elizabeth Camden. It was very interesting to read about the Great Chicago Fire, a historical event that I am familiar with, but prior to reading this novel (and doing some subsequent research) knew little about. The author did a good job of bringing the devastation of the fire – both to the city and its citizens – to life.
The storyline moves back and forth between Mollie’s viewpoint and Zack’s, with plenty of expected misperceptions and events occurring to seemingly foil their chances of ending up together. However, I prefer novels this way as it makes them seem more realistic. It makes for a much more engrossing read and this novel moved along at such a steady clip that I could barely put it down. The author keeps the reader guessing and I was eager to find out what was going to happen next.
Though a work of Christian fiction, there were not a lot of biblical undertones to the story. It read more like secular historical fiction than Christian historical fiction. Like in her other book that I read (The Rose of Winslow Street), there is a scene of brutal violence depicted in this story. It creates a sad subplot, but does realistically depict things that can happen after a tragedy. Though most people are good, some are not.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would highly recommend it. It is an engaging, fast-moving story with well-developed, interesting characters. Even if you don’t typically read Christian fiction – this book is one to put on your list.
Note: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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Review 17 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Into the Whirlwind by Elizabeth Camden

Date:September 2, 2013
Customer Avatar
Wanda
Location:NC
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Mollie Knox, owner of the 57th Illinois Watch Co., is proud of her thriving business and her employees, most of which were disabled members of the 57th Infantry alongside her father. Mollie had kept her father's wish of keeping these disabled men employed since his death. They are a close knit group, a "family" of sorts, and Mollie carries the burden of providing them with jobs and keeping the business afloat on her shoulders. But business is thriving and good things are on the horizon until the night of devestation that would forever change the lives of the entire city of Chicago. The Great Chicago Fire tears through the city leveling businesses and homes and leaving nothing but destruction in it's wake. Mollie is determined to rebuild her prized company and provide for her employees. What she needs is a miracle and God is just big enough to provide it. Torn between her love for Zack Kazmarek and her new feelings for Colonel Richard Lowe, will Mollie realize that the "better choice" isn't always the RIGHT choice?
Zack Kazmarek, an attorney for Hartman's Inc., Mollie's only buyer, has loved Mollie for three years. Although he keeps his feelings hidden his heart soars each time Mollie walks into his office to finalize the orders for her exquisite watches. The night of the devestating fire, Zack pores his heart out to Mollie but circumstances and differences soon come between them. Zack is heartsick when Colonel Richard Lowe comes on the scene and seems to be stealing Mollie's heart. He realizes he must give Mollie her space so she can see he is the right choice but will his decision backfire or will Mollie finally discover her true feelings?
I loved Mollie's character. She was a very intelligent, strong woman who could run a business single handedly and put together a tiny pocket watch with her eyes closed all while carrying the load of providing for forty employees and their families on her shoulders. When things got tough and she was knocked flat on her back she came up swinging, full of spirit and determination. Her shining moment was the way she fought to save Frank Spencer's life during the fire. She risked her own life to save a blind man who was like a second father to her without a single care for what could happen to her. She was a very inspiring character even though there were a couple of moments when she wasn't her best self.
I was very iffy about Zack at first. He seemed very cold and arrogant, all business and very little emotion. But it wasn't long before I became his champion. What Zack had kept hidden for three years was finally brought into the light and it completely changed the image of his character. Where Colonel Lowe provided assistance when Mollie needed it and did it boldly, Zack did his best work in secret. Constantly helping Mollie without any credit or fanfare and I loved that about him.
I have to say, Miss Camden is a very talented writer. The scenes of the fire were so vivid I felt like I was among those running for what safety I could find, praying to God for survival, with cinders and ash raining down upon me. That scene completely came to life through her words. I knew about the Great Chicago Fire but I had never FELT it until I read this book. This was a beautiful story of love, family and triumph during great loss and I look forward to reading more of Miss Camden's books. I thoroughly recommend it!
**A copy of this book was privided for FREE from the publisher for my true and honest opinion.**
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Review 18 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:August 31, 2013
Customer Avatar
Ruth Stiles
Location:Central NY
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Mollie Knox seems to have all her ducks in a row. She is a woman with a bright future, and her career as owner of the 57th Illinois Watch Company is bringing her much joy and success. She inherited the watch company from her father at the time of his death which enables Mollie to feel a sense of pride over her accomplishments. All of her dreams come crashing down around her when the great Chicago Fire devours her city, her livelihood, and her business. She has no idea how to pick up the pieces and take a step forward. It is during this time of tragedy when Mollie meets Zack. Zack is the typical male role in any romance and inspirational novel. He sweeps onto the scene looking for ways to help that anyone would love to accept except the very person is trying to help. Mollie doesn’t want his help, doesn’t need his help, and wants nothing to do with him.
Many great books have been written on the Great Chicago Fire. However, Elizabeth Camden does an excellent job at uniting pain and loss with hope and love. As the city of Chicago rebuilds in the aftermath of this disaster, Mollie’s heart, future, and business is slowly revived through the rubble with the help of Zack’s influence as an attorney. Readers will get an accurate and historical glimpse into this time of hardship in American’s past, as well as be engaged and entertained by the developing love story between Mollie and Jack.
I received this book from Bethany House Publishers and am not being compensated for my review.
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Review 19 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Wow! Amazing book

Date:August 27, 2013
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Sarah H
Location:Texas
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Age Appropriate For: 15 and up (reading level and moderate romance)
Best for Ages: 18 and up
How can I even begin to describe how much I loved this book? Maybe if I tell you that Elizabeth Camden is now my favorite author you will start to understand. I don’t think I have ever read an author with such well-developed characters. Against the Tide and this book had characters that I fell in love with so much that I loved a plot that I wouldn’t normally like.
I so understood Mollie. I feel as if she is a real person and I could meet her someday. She was an excellent heroine who had her strengths and her flaws. She thrives on order but is forced to live in chaos after the Chicago fire. Her response was so real and understandable, as well as courageous at the same time.
Zack… At first I didn’t like him, then I loved him, then I hated him, and then I wanted to marry him. He was that well written. Like Mollie he was deep. He had his strengths and his flaws. I loved how complex he was. His parents? They added such a wonderful dimension to the story.
One thing I was asked about while reading this book was how the love triangle worked. Typically, I dislike love triangles because someone (usually the girl) ends up looking really stupid. They spend half the book trying to decide which guy, and I want to scream at the character because the choice is obvious. Into the Whirlwind was very different. Yes, the main girl does struggle to choose between two guys. However, her struggle is very real and understandable. I totally got why she wasn’t sure and why she considered another guy. I also think the resolution was very believable, not sappy-roll-your-eyes like many love triangle endings.
The setting of this book was amazing. I really do feel like I was there during the fire. I came away knowing a lot more about it than I did before. Having seen a few nature disasters in our area (the Bastrop, Texas fire took place not too far from where I live) I have an understanding of how people react. Elizabeth Camden captured the emotions and feelings so well.
I can’t say enough about this book. You just have to buy a copy for yourself and let yourself be swept…Into the Whirlwind.
I received this book from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review. I was under no obligation to write a positive review. The opinions in this review are entirely my own.
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Review 20 for Into the Whirlwind
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Great novel!

Date:August 26, 2013
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Elizabeth Camden is an author that never fails to captivate her readers from the very beginning of her books. This book didn't disappoint at all. I liked everything about this book, from cover to cover and in between.
I have read several fiction books about the Chicago fire, but none that have been in so much detail as this book. In other books, I feel like it's just the minor fact in the story. This story thrives on the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. In fact, the first almost 100 pages of the book is devoted to the fire itself....well, and a little back story of what happened in the 6 days leading up to the fire. I loved the history thrown into this story and how I was able to imagine the fear those people had felt. I simply can't imagine standing in freezing water and watching your city burn and to have to leave behind a framed picture--the only picture you have--of your father and what was close to his heart.
Zack Kazmarek is an intimidating lawyer who has apparently fallen head over heels in love for Mollie Knox, the owner of the 57th Illinois Watch Company that her father created and she inherited after her father's death. However, for Zack to act on his feelings would mean a most certain death to his career with the infamous Hartman....the one who has a lot of money and keeps the watch company in business by buying so many of their watches for their stores. Mollie has no idea of Zack's intentions and to her, he seems arrogant and rude and downright mean. You could even add sneaky and a trickster to the list, although Zack would disagree with those last two.
Zack had to grow on me. I didn't like his attitude and I definitely didn't like the way that he treated Mollie. I liked Mollie from the beginning. She seemed to be smart and caring and didn't care if she lost a deal. She met problems head on and took care of those who needed help. Who couldn't like her?!
After having read several books by Elizabeth Camden, I have to say that I think this is her best book. She keeps getting better and better! Can't wait to see what she comes up with next!
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I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest opinion of this book.
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