Where the Light Enters
From the international bestselling author of The Gilded Hour comes Sara Donati's enthralling epic about two trailblazing female doctors in nineteenth-century New York.Obstetrician Dr. Sophie Savard returns home to the achingly familiar rhythms of Manhattan in the early spring of 1884 to rebuild her life after the death of her husband. With the help of Dr. Anna Savard, her dearest friend, cousin, and fellow physician, she plans to continue her work aiding the disadvantaged women society would rather forget.As Sophie sets out to construct a new life for herself, Anna's husband, Detective-Sergeant Jack Mezzanotte calls on them both to consult on two new cases: the wife of a prominent banker has disappeared into thin air, and the corpse of a young woman is found with baffling wounds that suggest a killer is on the loose. In New York it seems that the advancement of women has brought out the worst in some men. Unable to ignore the plight of New York's less fortunate, these intrepid cousins draw on all resources to protect their patients.

Where the Light Enters Details

TitleWhere the Light Enters
Author
ReleaseSep 10th, 2019
PublisherBerkley Books
ISBN-139780425271827
Rating
GenreHistorical, Historical Fiction, Fiction, Mystery, Historical Mystery

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Where the Light Enters Review

  • Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
    January 1, 1970
    While Where the Light Enters is a follow-up to Donati’s previous novel, The Gilded Hour, this beautiful book can stand on its own.Dr. Sophie Savard is an obstetrician returning to Manhattan in the late 1800s. Her husband has passed away, and in many ways, she is starting over.Sophie’s dear cousin, Anna, is also doctor, and the pair plan to continue working with disadvantaged women who are often forgotten.Anna’s husband is a detective and seeks their help in solving cases. One is a wife who has d While Where the Light Enters is a follow-up to Donati’s previous novel, The Gilded Hour, this beautiful book can stand on its own.Dr. Sophie Savard is an obstetrician returning to Manhattan in the late 1800s. Her husband has passed away, and in many ways, she is starting over.Sophie’s dear cousin, Anna, is also doctor, and the pair plan to continue working with disadvantaged women who are often forgotten.Anna’s husband is a detective and seeks their help in solving cases. One is a wife who has disappeared, while the other is a deceased woman with unusual wounds.With the changing roles of women, it seems their being victims is continuing to happen. Sophie and Anna will do all they can to keep their patients safe.Oh my, if you are looking for strong female characters, look no further. Sophie and Anna are completely inspiring, and not just because of their smarts. Their devoted friendship to each other and their care and advocacy for their patients are awe-inspiring.Where the Light Enters is a chunk of a book, but no worries because it’s not overwritten. It’s simply that epic. If you are a mystery fan, there is a big, involved one here. Why are these women showing up murdered? And at whose hands? Sophie and Anna intend to find out.Overall, Where the Light Enters is a must-read for historical fiction fans, though I think mystery fans, and just about anyone will love this story. There’s grittiness and atmosphere, as well as two main characters with a strong passion for doing what is right, no matter the cost.I received a complimentary copy. All opinions are my own.Many of my reviews can also be found on my blog: www.jennifertarheelreader.com
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  • Quirkyreader
    January 1, 1970
    First off, I won this as a goodreads giveaway. Thank you Berkley and Penguin Random House.This book was jam packed with plot twits, and I rather enjoyed that. It turned out to be a very complex story.The story takes place in New York City when the Dakota building was being built and when Comstock was still in power. It is also a family story that shows who will always be there for you in your time of need. I’m not going in-depth with the plot and characters in this review , for this is a book th First off, I won this as a goodreads giveaway. Thank you Berkley and Penguin Random House.This book was jam packed with plot twits, and I rather enjoyed that. It turned out to be a very complex story.The story takes place in New York City when the Dakota building was being built and when Comstock was still in power. It is also a family story that shows who will always be there for you in your time of need. I’m not going in-depth with the plot and characters in this review , for this is a book that needs to be read and shared. Once you start it, you won’t want to stop until it’s done.
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  • Celia
    January 1, 1970
    There are 661 pages in this book and almost as many characters (just kidding). DO NOT BE INTIMIDATED. This book is that good.A wonderful historical fiction that centers on two cousins that are women and doctors. And yes, the year is 1884. I had no idea that there were female doctors in that year. (Since I started this book, I found out that the first female doctor, Elizabeth Blackwell, started practicing in 1841). This book has so many story lines to commend it. The most important is the death o There are 661 pages in this book and almost as many characters (just kidding). DO NOT BE INTIMIDATED. This book is that good.A wonderful historical fiction that centers on two cousins that are women and doctors. And yes, the year is 1884. I had no idea that there were female doctors in that year. (Since I started this book, I found out that the first female doctor, Elizabeth Blackwell, started practicing in 1841). This book has so many story lines to commend it. The most important is the death of women when the abortion of their child turns into their own murder. It is intimated that the doctor performing the procedure is morally incensed by their request for abortion and kills them by a slow and painful death. The cousins are involved in the investigation of these murders. Could not put the book down. 5 stars
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  • Erin
    January 1, 1970
    Giveaway win!
  • Zoe
    January 1, 1970
    Multilayered, fascinating, and incredibly absorbing!Where the Light Enters is a gritty, compelling tale set in New York City in the mid-1880s at a time when the island was bustling, female doctors were still discounted and frowned upon, reproduction and childbirth still had high mortality rates, and women looking for help with unwanted pregnancies had little or nowhere to go.There are two main memorable characters in this novel; Dr. Sophie Savard, a young multi-ethnic obstetrician who returns to Multilayered, fascinating, and incredibly absorbing!Where the Light Enters is a gritty, compelling tale set in New York City in the mid-1880s at a time when the island was bustling, female doctors were still discounted and frowned upon, reproduction and childbirth still had high mortality rates, and women looking for help with unwanted pregnancies had little or nowhere to go.There are two main memorable characters in this novel; Dr. Sophie Savard, a young multi-ethnic obstetrician who returns to the United States to open a scholarship program and home for girls looking to study medicine after her husband succumbs to Consumption; and Dr. Anna Mezzanotte, a young surgeon who spends her days operating on those less fortunate and helping her detective husband Jack as he hunts for a serial killer who preys on women seeking an abortion.The prose is eloquent and rich. The characters are strong, independent, intelligent, and genuine. And the plot using an intriguing mixture of narration, letters, newspaper articles, and reports immerses you in a riveting, suspenseful tale of familial dynamics, duty, friendship, passion, loss, love, sexism, violence, murder, and the roles and struggles faced by female physicians in early medicine.Where the Light Enters is once again another hefty novel by Donati, with just under 700 pages, but it is so remarkably atmospheric and beautifully written that before you know it the story is finished and you’re yearning for more.Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Kristina
    January 1, 1970
    Some sequels try too hard to squeeze in a synopsis of previous books or to fill the timeline gap with internal monologues from various characters. Where the Light Enters is not one of those. We come back to Anna, Sophie and their extended families with an exchange of letters and news articles. Donati draws you in from the start with this simple and elegant opening. Where the Light Enters answers, in heartbreaking ways, some of the burning questions that The Gilded Hour left us with, while leavin Some sequels try too hard to squeeze in a synopsis of previous books or to fill the timeline gap with internal monologues from various characters. Where the Light Enters is not one of those. We come back to Anna, Sophie and their extended families with an exchange of letters and news articles. Donati draws you in from the start with this simple and elegant opening. Where the Light Enters answers, in heartbreaking ways, some of the burning questions that The Gilded Hour left us with, while leaving mysteries of its own behind. Ones that I look forward to returning to in future books. As with The Gilded Hour and previous books in the Wilderness Series, Donati draws the past and present together. Issues that we faced as individuals and as a country a century and more ago are still relevant today. Beautifully researched and rich with historical detail, Where the Light Enters will make you feel as if you’ve stepped onto the sidewalks in 1884 to walk alongside strong, intelligent female physicians and students and cunning New York Detectives. Advanced reading copy from publisher.
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  • Jillian Doherty
    January 1, 1970
    An epic of a historical fiction~Two trail blazing female doctors in the 1880s (I found myself Googling parts throughout the read – always a good sign!) set in NYC when The Dakota was just being built. This meticulously research story focuses on an obstetrician and general sergeant, and the many obstacles they must overcome, especially Sophia who's half African American. Plus so much more!Both doctors are called to help consult on a police case where a women has been found tortured. Opening up to An epic of a historical fiction~Two trail blazing female doctors in the 1880s (I found myself Googling parts throughout the read – always a good sign!) set in NYC when The Dakota was just being built. This meticulously research story focuses on an obstetrician and general sergeant, and the many obstacles they must overcome, especially Sophia who's half African American. Plus so much more!Both doctors are called to help consult on a police case where a women has been found tortured. Opening up to a larger case; a serial killer who is brutally killing pregnant women, who've forgotten their purpose in society. Reminiscent of The Alienist~Galley borrowed from the publisher.
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  • Maureen
    January 1, 1970
    I have previously read The Gilded Hour by this same author. I was so surprised to learn that I won ARC from Goodreads through Penguin Random House. I enjoyed The Gilded Hour and I couldn’t wait to read the continuing story. I was not disappointed. Where the Light Enters is an epic historical novel. This book is set in NYC in the 1880’s when the Dakota building was being built, along with many medical mysteries and police investigations. We meet again Dr Anna Savard and her cousin Sophie who is a I have previously read The Gilded Hour by this same author. I was so surprised to learn that I won ARC from Goodreads through Penguin Random House. I enjoyed The Gilded Hour and I couldn’t wait to read the continuing story. I was not disappointed. Where the Light Enters is an epic historical novel. This book is set in NYC in the 1880’s when the Dakota building was being built, along with many medical mysteries and police investigations. We meet again Dr Anna Savard and her cousin Sophie who is also a doctor. Anna is married to Jack Mezzanotte who is a detective sergeant with the New York City police Dept. Sophie has recently become a widow and has returned to New York from Europe. The story continues with Anna and Jack and Rosa and Lia and baby Tonino. We learn about the mystery at the end of The Gilded Hour. Although this book is the second book in the sequel it can be read as a stand alone but I recommend reading the first book in the saga.This book was very well written with historical details, including details from newspaper articles and letters from members of the family. I loved how the female doctors helped the NYC police Dept solve some of their medical mysteries and murders. This is an enjoyable read for all
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  • Brooklyn Tayla
    January 1, 1970
    You can find my full review and author interview on my blog now live here:https://brooklynthebookworm.wordpress...A huge thank you to Penguin Random House Australia for having me on this review tour! Review included below, accordingly:This is a follow up novel to the author’s The Gilded Hour but I feel like it certainly sits comfortably on its own. I certainly think that the story of cousins Dr Sophie Savard and her dearest cousin, Anna Savard, is more of a character journey rather than plot, al You can find my full review and author interview on my blog now live here:https://brooklynthebookworm.wordpress...A huge thank you to Penguin Random House Australia for having me on this review tour! Review included below, accordingly:This is a follow up novel to the author’s The Gilded Hour but I feel like it certainly sits comfortably on its own. I certainly think that the story of cousins Dr Sophie Savard and her dearest cousin, Anna Savard, is more of a character journey rather than plot, although there is a lingering mystery underlying throughout this book, too.As a genre, I really enjoy Historical Fiction, the ability to transport the reader to another time and place, immersing them in a completely different setting! Sara Donati’s hugely vast setting of Nineteenth Century New York, where her Dr Sophie Savard returns after suffering a personal loss. I did feel so sad for Sophie having to grieve her husband, I feel like her characters, namely Sophie and Anna, were really strongly fleshed out and I absolutely adored their dedication and determination to help the impoverished women that society would generally frown upon.Furthermore, both ladies utterly adored one another and relied on one another through thick and thin, Anna providing comfort to Sophie as they mourned together and attempt to figure out what, or whom, is causing these young women to fall victim to foul play.Whilst the characters were absolutely fascinating and engaging to read about, I found the writing to be highly filled with every little detail, from Anna and Sophie’s day to day activities, to just every little detail. Unfortunately, this is where it fell flat for me, I found myself getting lost amongst the description, it taking away from the main plot and mystery of the story.This shall conclude my review, but if you continue to read on, which I hope you will, you’ll find my interview with Sara Donati. Thank you again to Penguin Random House Australia for this review and author interview opportunity.
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  • Denise
    January 1, 1970
    What a story! Although a follow-up to THE GILDED HOUR (released in 2015), this could be read as a standalone, though I'd definitely not recommend it. Indeed it is captivating and mesmerizing in its scope and depth of life in New York City in 1884. The hefty novel (670 pages) is great historical fiction and focuses on two very strong women, the Drs. Anna and Sophie Savard, cousins who are two of the few practicing women physicians during this time period. Related through a very complicated bloodl What a story! Although a follow-up to THE GILDED HOUR (released in 2015), this could be read as a standalone, though I'd definitely not recommend it. Indeed it is captivating and mesmerizing in its scope and depth of life in New York City in 1884. The hefty novel (670 pages) is great historical fiction and focuses on two very strong women, the Drs. Anna and Sophie Savard, cousins who are two of the few practicing women physicians during this time period. Related through a very complicated bloodline, Anna is white and Sophie is mulatto, and their family tree is as diverse as can be imagined. Their relationship to their huge family is so complex that it requires a section in the front of the book listing all the primary characters! You may need to refer to it especially if you haven't read the first book. Regardless, the author is very adept at explanations and detail to help keep them straight.The novel begins with Dr. Sophie Savard Verhoeven's return to New York after accompanying her husband, Peter (Cap), to Switzerland where he died of tuberculosis. She has kept up with her extended family though many letters during her absence, and comes back to claim her husband's estate and to, hopefully, establish a scholarship program for "colored girls who want to study medicine." Sophie, a specialist in gynecology, quickly reconnects with her cousin, Dr. Anna Savard Mezzanote -- physician and surgeon -- who has married Detective Sergeant Mezzanote of the New York Police. In no time at all, Sophie and Anna, along with Jack and his partner DS Oscar Maroney, become embroiled in a mystery that seems to have a link to a case that stymied them in the first book, the unsolved Multipara Homicides. Nine different women sought out illegal operations (abortions) and were essentially murdered by whomever performed the procedure; the deaths of these women were intentional. The perpetrator was never caught or convicted though Jack and Oscar have their suspicions. When another victim turns up in the morgue showing signs of imprisonment and torture, Jack, Oscar, Sophie and Anna step up their investigation. Meanwhile, there are many family dramas and other activities to keep them all very busy. NO SPOILERS I really enjoyed this book and it took me far longer than usual to read because I savored every page and kept rereading certain parts. I love historical fiction, especially if it has anything medical in it, and there was so much within the narrative to provide the descriptiveness and information that I crave. I loved the characters and their quirks -- there's nothing like a large family to add some spice and flavor to a story. It's a great saga and I hope that there will be another book to follow as I still have a huge interest in them all and want to know more. Any fan of a good mystery cloaked in historical detail will be completely engrossed. It can't be over!Thank you to NetGalley and Berkley Publishers for this e-book ARC to savor and review. Don't miss it!
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  • Chris C - A Midlife Wife
    January 1, 1970
    This is the longest book I think I have ever read. Good plot but mixed feelings. 3.5 stars~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~I have to start this off with a warning of sorts. This is a massive book. Easily 3 to 4 times the size of a normal fiction story.With that said, the author did an amazing job developing infinite and minute detail in every piece of the story. In my opinion, this book is actually two books in one. Let me explain.First of all, it would be helpful to read the first book in the This is the longest book I think I have ever read. Good plot but mixed feelings. 3.5 stars~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~I have to start this off with a warning of sorts. This is a massive book. Easily 3 to 4 times the size of a normal fiction story.With that said, the author did an amazing job developing infinite and minute detail in every piece of the story. In my opinion, this book is actually two books in one. Let me explain.First of all, it would be helpful to read the first book in the series, The Gilded Hour, which I did not do. There are multiple details the author assumes you know that are coming in from the other book.Secondly, the list of characters is quite large and it does take a bit to keep track of everyone. Even the housekeepers and other attendants have ample say in this story.Now back to why this is two books in one. On one hand you have the murder mystery and all of that which surrounds the detail.Then in the next chapter you’re learning about the women and their medical stories and their daily work. The murder mystery pieces are forgotten for many, many, many chapters. We get intricate conversation about daily happenings, the hopes and dreams of one character, even hiring people are detailed conversations. There’s also a side story of orphaned children tied into this whole humongous family unit.I’m not saying this is a bad thing. But I was looking for a story about the murder mystery which to me was intensely interesting. The time, the history, the fact that the female doctors (including a black female) and midwives were involved greatly interested me.But it seemed that portion was diminished amongst everything else surrounding it until the very end when it became key. The second part of the story and all of the supreme detail about the family unit was not what I was expecting. But some details did cross over into the murder mystery.Overall, the story is beautifully laid out, very interesting to read, and perfect for someone that loves family sagas, with a twist of love, murder, and history. Just be prepared to dedicate quite a while to read this book.I have to admit it was difficult for me but looking back, it was a pleasurable read with some nice twists that keep you engaged, especially the last half.* copy received fore review considerationFull Review - https://amidlifewife.com/where-the-li...
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  • Theresa Smith
    January 1, 1970
    I feel as though I have been waiting forever for this novel but in reality, it has only been a couple of years. I have been very aware of it for all of that time though as Sara Donati is generous to her fans and regularly shares progress and research via her Facebook page, ensuring that all of us who read The Gilded Hour have been eagerly awaiting the chance to get our hands on Where the Light Enters. It has definitely been worth the wait, but all of Sara’s novels are. Those who have been follow I feel as though I have been waiting forever for this novel but in reality, it has only been a couple of years. I have been very aware of it for all of that time though as Sara Donati is generous to her fans and regularly shares progress and research via her Facebook page, ensuring that all of us who read The Gilded Hour have been eagerly awaiting the chance to get our hands on Where the Light Enters. It has definitely been worth the wait, but all of Sara’s novels are. Those who have been following my blog for any length of time will have seen Sara’s work pop up here before. She is without doubt, one of my favourite authors. Her Wilderness Series, and The Gilded Hour, which precedes Where the Light Enters, are nothing short of master classes on writing historical fiction that fulfils its true potential. Now she has another worthy addition to her stable of brilliance. Stop reading now if you don’t want to hear me gushing. Because I do not intend to hold back.Where the Light Enters seamlessly picks up the threads left dangling at the end of The Gilded Hour. We are immediately transported back into the lives of the Savard cousins as though we had never left them. In this, I feel it important to point out that Where the Light Enters is very much a second book in a series. Some may read it as a standalone, but as a die-hard fan, I recommend reading The Gilded Hour first in order to maximise your appreciation for the world building and character depth that Sara Donati has infused into this series from the beginning. Fans of her preceding Wilderness series will enjoy the continued references throughout to those characters, who are the ancestors of Anna and Sophie Savard. Each time I noticed one of these threads, it was like a gift from the past. I loved the Wilderness series so much, and while not all good things can last forever, I am so pleased that some elements of it remain immortal through this new series.Where the Light Enters offers readers such an immersive reading experience through its use of different mediums. The narrative is broken up with letters, newspaper articles, tables, maps, postcards, telegrams, court transcripts, police reports, doctor reports, and even household lists. Even though these elements are all fictional, they still offer such an insightful view into the history of the era. The research that Sara Donati employs is very much in evidence throughout the entire novel within the depth, breadth and scope of her setting and themes. As it was with The Gilded Hour, the focus within Where the Light Enters is on women in history, but its gaze is a broad one, encompassing a myriad of social, welfare, economic, professional, and health issues across the classes for women of all colours and cultures. This novel is huge, but it needs to be on account of its story depth and significance. It goes without saying that this is recommended reading. I have seen on Sara’s website that there is a third book in the making – we just need to be patient!I’d like to finish with a few of Sara’s own words. They sum up what this story is about far more elegantly than I ever could:‘For the most part I write about women who lived in male-dominated societies, who fought for education, acknowledgment, and self-determination, often against all odds. My curiosity about women who sacrificed a great deal to pursue a medical degree in the last half of the 19th century was the natural extension of the women healers who were central to the earlier Wilderness series, and so Anna and Sophie Savard are Hannah and Elizabeth and Curiosity’s granddaughters, women who lived their lives in Manhattan when women’s health was still mostly a matter for men to decide.’And on that note, I leave you so you can get started on reading it for yourself.Thanks is extended to Penguin Random House Australia for providing me with a copy of Where the Light Enters for review and for the invitation to participate in the #WhereTheLightEntersTour.
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  • Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
    January 1, 1970
    **Enter to WIN for AU residents at http://bookdout.wordpress.com 22nd Sept to 5th October 2019**Where The Light Enters by Sara Donati is an engrossing, complex story of historical fiction, a superb sequel to The Gilded Hour.Though Where The Light Enters could be read as a stand-alone, I personally wouldn’t recommend it. The tale begins a few months after the end of The Gilded Hour with an exchange of letters, newspaper articles, and other correspondence between Sophie in Switzerland and her exte **Enter to WIN for AU residents at http://bookdout.wordpress.com 22nd Sept to 5th October 2019**Where The Light Enters by Sara Donati is an engrossing, complex story of historical fiction, a superb sequel to The Gilded Hour.Though Where The Light Enters could be read as a stand-alone, I personally wouldn’t recommend it. The tale begins a few months after the end of The Gilded Hour with an exchange of letters, newspaper articles, and other correspondence between Sophie in Switzerland and her extended family, just before Cap’s death. It is Spring when she returns home to New York City, and once again the reader is drawn into the personal and professional lives of Drs. Anna and Sophie Savard, and a growing ensemble cast.Donati combines heartfelt family drama and an intriguing mystery within a richly detailed historical setting. I was delighted to return to Waverly Place, and reacquaint myself with the residents of ‘Roses’ and ‘Weeds’. The Drs. Savard remain strong, independent, compassionate women supported by a caring extended family of relatives and friends. Anna and her husband Jack are challenged by the loss of their charges, though kept busy be their respective positions. Sophie, while still in mourning, is making plans to establish a scholarship program, having moved into Stuyvesant Square, (later christened ‘Doves’ and ‘Lark’ by Lia). A handful of new characters are introduced as Sophie takes on staff, while others introduced previously take on a larger role.I was very relieved that there was finally a resolution to the fascinating mystery involving the sensational murders of nine women that began in The Gilded Hour. Nicholas Lambert identifies another shocking murder he believes is related in Where The Light Enters which allows Jack and Oscar to reopen the case and follow up on new leads. I had correctly surmised the identities of the guilty parties (mostly), but when revealed, the motivation was more distressing than I expected.With authentic and compelling detail Donati illustrates the physical and social dichotomy of New York City in the 1800’s. She highlights the hypocrisy of religious and moral fervour, the inequalities supported by law, the racism that results in warring immigrants, and the vibrancy of a busy city constantly reinventing itself., where apartment buildings with marble floors and crystal sconces, overlook crowded, vermin infested tenements.Beautifully written, with absorbing storylines and richly drawn characters, this series is proving to be worth the investment. There are minor threads left unresolved in Where The Light Enters that no doubt will be explored in the next instalment of the Waverly Place series, which I’m very much looking forward to.
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  • Annarella
    January 1, 1970
    An amazing mix of genre, historical fiction plus some thriller element, that makes you read this book as fast as you can.I loved this engrossing and entertaining book even sometimes I felt a bit lost as there're so many characters.The character development and the well researched historical background were excellent, the style of writing is very good.It's the first book I read by this author and won't surely be the last.Highly recommended!Many thanks to the publisher and Edelweiss for this ARC, An amazing mix of genre, historical fiction plus some thriller element, that makes you read this book as fast as you can.I loved this engrossing and entertaining book even sometimes I felt a bit lost as there're so many characters.The character development and the well researched historical background were excellent, the style of writing is very good.It's the first book I read by this author and won't surely be the last.Highly recommended!Many thanks to the publisher and Edelweiss for this ARC, all opinions are mine.
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  • Patricia
    January 1, 1970
    WHERE THE LIGHT ENTERS is a beautifully written novel. By the time I finished the book, I felt I knew the characters and their homes. This is a book I believe any woman would love. Taking place in the 1880's, the main characters are 2 female doctors and their friends and family in New York. Romance, family dynamics, murder are just a few of the topics covered. I highly recommend this book to all! I love Sara Donati!!!
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  • Jackie Gorman
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to "First to Read" for selecting me to read an electronic galley of this book.I am a huge fan of Sara Donati. I enjoyed the "Gilded Hour" because it brought me back in touch with characters from her "Into the Wilderness" series. Sara's writing is so powerful that you begin to see her characters as cherished friends that you want to keep in touch with. "Where the Light Enters" (WTLE) picks up the story of the Doctors Savard from the "Gilded Hour" (GH). I have to admit that I am somewhat di Thanks to "First to Read" for selecting me to read an electronic galley of this book.I am a huge fan of Sara Donati. I enjoyed the "Gilded Hour" because it brought me back in touch with characters from her "Into the Wilderness" series. Sara's writing is so powerful that you begin to see her characters as cherished friends that you want to keep in touch with. "Where the Light Enters" (WTLE) picks up the story of the Doctors Savard from the "Gilded Hour" (GH). I have to admit that I am somewhat disappointed that there seems to be several months between where GH ended and WTLE began. We are brought up to date by a series of letters between Sophie and Cap, who are still in Switzerland, and the family along with newspaper clippings. While the letters and clippings did a great job of explaining what was going on, I am sure there was plenty of drama that could not be expressed through correspondence.What did continue was the major story line about the brutal murders of pregnant women. Sara did a masterful job of telling this story. She provided very subtle clues but never gave away the actual killer until it was time. I know I was surprised when I figured out "who done it".The villains from GH are still villains in WTLE but this time, they are secondary to the times as villain instead of individual villains. Comstock is still there and is still a villain but the real villain seems to be the way society treats women, children and people of color. My definition of society includes organized religion both catholic and protestant.I enjoyed spending more time with the extended families of both the Savards and the Mezzanotte's. I also love how Cap's uncle has become the legal advisor for this large extended family. The new or expanded characters are also a treat like Mrs. Griffin, Elise's friend Sally, Dr. Martindale, Sam Reason, Laura Lee, and Dr. Lambert. I think all of these characters will be very important moving forward with GH. Once again, the medical information was very interesting. It is intriguing to see how diseases such as lymphoma and leukemia were treated back then.All in all, this is a great read. It is like getting together with a good friend you have not seen for a while - you laugh a little, you cry a little, but most of all, you enjoy being together. I am already looking forward to the next book in the series. I will definitely purchase a copy of this for my library.17
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  • Kymm
    January 1, 1970
    I loved this book! Where The Light Enters by Sara Donati is the sequel to The Gilded Hour and it didn't disappoint. When I read a sequel or a series book I'm always curious how the author will catch the reader up to what's happened previously in the other book(s). Sara Donati did an excellent job of catching the reader up to what's gone on previously. Usually when I start a sequel I find it takes the author 50-100 pages to do this, not here, she wrote it as though everything that happened previo I loved this book! Where The Light Enters by Sara Donati is the sequel to The Gilded Hour and it didn't disappoint. When I read a sequel or a series book I'm always curious how the author will catch the reader up to what's happened previously in the other book(s). Sara Donati did an excellent job of catching the reader up to what's gone on previously. Usually when I start a sequel I find it takes the author 50-100 pages to do this, not here, she wrote it as though everything that happened previously was written in police case files, newspaper articles and court documents. It really helped me catch up to The Gilded Hour which I read several months ago. I'd been waiting for Where The Light Enters to be published since I read The Gilded Hour. The story continues about two female doctors who are cousins, one white, one black in New York City in the late 1800's. Being female the doctors didn't get the respect and acknowledgment they deserved, they fought the male doctors at every turn and many disregarded them as less than their male counterparts. The best part about this book is the author gives the reader a look into what being a female doctor was like, with all it's discrimination and troubles during the 19th century, but there's also a great mystery going on at the same time. A maniac is killing women who for various reasons seek out an abortion, which was obviously illegal at the time. Drs. Savard are called in to help with the investigation of these crimes and to help find a missing woman who hasn't been heard from in weeks. Dr. Sophie Savard is a gynecologist and Dr. Anna Savard a surgeon. They become a big help to Dr. Anna's husband Jack Mezzanotte, a New York detective trying to solve the case. The author did a great job of keeping me on the edge of my seat, it was a fast paced murder mystery with some great historical facts thrown in. A real who dunnit! If you're a fan of great mysteries, thrillers or historical fiction you'll be happy to read this one. It's got it all! I've been a big fan of Sara Donati and love the way she writes. I still have a few of her books I want to read and after reading this one I'm anxious to get them started. This is a definite must for anyone who's read The Gilded Hour, and even if you haven't this could easily be a stand alone book because of the way Donati catches the reader up to what's happened so far in the story. Another great pick I found on Goodreads! A must for historical fiction fans, historical mystery fans or fans of a great story about a time in the United States when women were not given the credit they deserved and even worse for those trying to practice medicine. I highly recommend this one! Happy Reading!
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  • Lucy
    January 1, 1970
    I was a giveaway winner for this book from Penguin/Random House (Berkley Marketing) and was so pleased to receive an advance copy. Having read all of Sara Donati’s books, I dived right in. Being familiar with her characters from Into the Wilderness series and The Gilded Hour, I picked right up with these amazing people. This can be a stand-alone book for those not familiar with her works, so no worries. It brings to life New York in the 1880s, with all its grit and back alley seediness. What I l I was a giveaway winner for this book from Penguin/Random House (Berkley Marketing) and was so pleased to receive an advance copy. Having read all of Sara Donati’s books, I dived right in. Being familiar with her characters from Into the Wilderness series and The Gilded Hour, I picked right up with these amazing people. This can be a stand-alone book for those not familiar with her works, so no worries. It brings to life New York in the 1880s, with all its grit and back alley seediness. What I loved about this book are the strong female characters, both doctors, which was quite unusual for the time. Donati does extensive research and it shows. Dr. Sophie Savard and her cousin, Dr. Anna Savard Mezzanotte are brilliantly written and I immediately wanted to know more about their lives. These two remarkable women will stay with you long after the last page. Full of adventure, intrigue, intellect and every-day quiet moments, it is a beautiful and powerful read.
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  • Jo Ann
    January 1, 1970
    My rating fluctuated between a 4 and a 5, but I loved the history of NYC in 1884 so much that it pushed it over the edge to a 5. I had read The Gilded Hour, this author's previous book about the 2 cousins, Drs. Anna Savard, and Sophie...unusual in itself that they were highly respected ( by most) women physicians during this time period. The book is chock-full of family, marriage, children, police investigations, murders, etc. There are quite a few characters I love, and a few to be despised. I My rating fluctuated between a 4 and a 5, but I loved the history of NYC in 1884 so much that it pushed it over the edge to a 5. I had read The Gilded Hour, this author's previous book about the 2 cousins, Drs. Anna Savard, and Sophie...unusual in itself that they were highly respected ( by most) women physicians during this time period. The book is chock-full of family, marriage, children, police investigations, murders, etc. There are quite a few characters I love, and a few to be despised. I found myself go0gling the buildings, homes, parks, happenings in 1884 NYC, and I loved learning of the city's history. I would read it again!
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  • Sherry
    January 1, 1970
    A totally satisfying sequel to The Gilded Hour and well worth the four year wait for it. Read it slowly because I was so enjoying spending time with the Savards and Mezzanottes.Will be highly anticipating the sequel to this one, too.
  • Jeff
    January 1, 1970
    I won this ARC in a Goodreads giveaway. This is the first thing I've read by the author. This book could have been much shorter, but not nearly as enjoyable, if it had stuck to the mystery that the synopsis mentions. The flow in the book makes it real hard to put down. The characters were believable, extremely likeable, and very entertaining. The writing style varies a bit throughout the course of the book (letters from different characters, newspaper articles, police reports, court documents, a I won this ARC in a Goodreads giveaway. This is the first thing I've read by the author. This book could have been much shorter, but not nearly as enjoyable, if it had stuck to the mystery that the synopsis mentions. The flow in the book makes it real hard to put down. The characters were believable, extremely likeable, and very entertaining. The writing style varies a bit throughout the course of the book (letters from different characters, newspaper articles, police reports, court documents, and medical reports) which makes it all that more interesting. This book leave me wanting more about the Drs. Savard. I hope there are follow ups as there is something for everyone in this book.
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  • Jessica
    January 1, 1970
    Do you like big books!? This is a big book. At 649 pages, this was a long one. Set in New York in the late 1800's, this follows the story of two trail blazing female doctors Anna and Sophie Savard, who are called in for their medical expertise to consult on a possible murder case. It is a historical fiction and it is clear throughout that the author Sara Donati did her research and put so much effort into this one. The descriptions of New York as well as the time period and the medical aspects w Do you like big books!? This is a big book. At 649 pages, this was a long one. Set in New York in the late 1800's, this follows the story of two trail blazing female doctors Anna and Sophie Savard, who are called in for their medical expertise to consult on a possible murder case. It is a historical fiction and it is clear throughout that the author Sara Donati did her research and put so much effort into this one. The descriptions of New York as well as the time period and the medical aspects were well written and brought a lot of detail into the story. I liked this book and with a touch of mystery it was an entertaining read. I did not read The Gilded Hour, which was the first story about these two doctors. Though this one could stand alone, I feel like reading the first book would have given me a bit more background information on their characters. Speaking of characters, this story had plenty and at times it was hard to keep them straight. My only real criticism of this one is that it was, at times, quite wordy with a lot of dialogue and it made the book a bit longer than it needed to be. Overall, it was an enjoyable read! If you enjoy historical fiction with strong female characters, check this one out!
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  • Jennifer Sakash
    January 1, 1970
    Always a pleasure to return to the rich world Donati creates; I was fortunate to receive this ARC and be able to continue the story directly from The Gilded Hour. Medical-heavy and at times rather bleak, though representative of the time and location. What I appreciate most are the strong family ties and friendships developed in Donati's books.
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  • Elaine
    January 1, 1970
    Okay read. Interesting read for the history of women physicians in 1880s NY. Story line read not so much, it was too disjointed, hopping from one character storyline to another, also felt like I was dropped into a series and missed out not reading previous books although it’s stated to be a stand alone book.
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  • nikkia neil
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to First to Read for this ARC.Great continuation to this series. Sad, honest, and brimming with empathy and growth. Donati knows her audience well enough to give us intrigue, love, and a mys try that touches every time period.
  • Shannon
    January 1, 1970
    This book was mis-titled. Based on context, it should have been called "1984." Despite its non-similarity to that famous book, it is indeed far more reflective of the social attitudes, concerns, speech, medical procedures, and political correctness of the late 20th century, than of the late 19th century it claims to portray.It read like a modern-day T.V. script...in fact, if NYPD Blue and ER were combined with a very convoluted (but not very good) Russian family saga, you might end up with a pas This book was mis-titled. Based on context, it should have been called "1984." Despite its non-similarity to that famous book, it is indeed far more reflective of the social attitudes, concerns, speech, medical procedures, and political correctness of the late 20th century, than of the late 19th century it claims to portray.It read like a modern-day T.V. script...in fact, if NYPD Blue and ER were combined with a very convoluted (but not very good) Russian family saga, you might end up with a pastiche like this!Part of my confusion is due to the fact that this is the second in a series, so because I didn't read the first book, I came into this mish-mash utterly unaware of how, what, who, when, where, why these random people had to do with each other. In the hands of a master storyteller, any series book can also be a "stand alone." That is definitely NOT the case here! Some of it I was able to piece together, but as for the rest of it, frankly, I didn't ever get some of it and I didn't care! At the bottom of my apathy is the fact that none of the characters is engaging and their strange backgrounds are not intriguing. Ironically, the anachronisms and discordant words and attitudes which plague the story like leprosy, were enough of a challenge to make me research the status of female doctors in the New York City of 1884. There are no hard statistics for that particular year, but it is repeatedly noted that there were none of licensed record. Furthermore, any women who put themselves in the medical arena in the "late 19th century, faced scorn and ridicule from their male colleagues." While these attitudes were alluded to in the book, far more often, the few men doctors who are allowed to make an appearance, seem to hold their female counterparts in the highest esteem and are deferential in the extreme. Wishful, 1984 thinking!Other disturbing things in this book: graphic torture and medical details that are not for the faint of stomach. These gruesome descriptions are totally off-putting and unsettling. But to the author's credit, there are no equally graphic sexual scenes, although several clinical sexual terms and conditions are referred to liberally through-out.There was a completely inadequate family tree at the front of the book which did not help connect the ramifications of the several branches of the family at all. Lastly, I felt this complex, diverse family was far too contrived to be believable!Clearly, there will be additional sequels in this series. I will not be reading any of the others.
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  • Hayley (meet_me_at_the_library)
    January 1, 1970
    Where the Light Enters centres around Anna and Sophie Savard, two trailblazing female physicians in nineteenth century New York. Donati’s writing is brilliantly evocative—you really get a sense of time and place while reading. And what a time and place it is! It was so refreshing to read about a time period other than WWII. The story is so rich in historical details—the setting is so vivid, it practically jumps off the page! You can tell that the book was meticulously researched.In an era where Where the Light Enters centres around Anna and Sophie Savard, two trailblazing female physicians in nineteenth century New York. Donati’s writing is brilliantly evocative—you really get a sense of time and place while reading. And what a time and place it is! It was so refreshing to read about a time period other than WWII. The story is so rich in historical details—the setting is so vivid, it practically jumps off the page! You can tell that the book was meticulously researched.In an era where women had few rights and were expected to become wives and mothers, Anna and Sophie were strong advocates for them. Specifically, their right to choose whether and when to have children. Their dedication to and compassion towards the disadvantaged women and children of the city was admirable. Donati sure knows how to write a strong, empowered female character—the book is full of them! Actually, she knows how to write a great character full stop. Aunt Quinlan, Amelie, Jack and Oscar are all terrific!A must-read for anyone who has read The Gilded Hour (it ties up all the loose ends). Haven’t read it yet? Then I highly recommend you start with that one, as you won’t want to miss a minute of this epic story.DISCLAIMER: I received a free copy of this book from Penguin Australia in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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  • Viviane Crystal
    January 1, 1970
    Dr. Sophie Savard and Dr. Anna Savard, Sophie’s cousin and best friend, want to start a medical school and hospital for disadvantaged women in the 1800s. Both doctors are women of color and have had their past experiences of prejudice and suspicion. Now, Dr. Sophie’s husband has died of tuberculosis in Europe and she has returned to New York. She’s had plenty of condolences and her own memories in grief to now process. But activities in the city quickly garner her interest and involvement. A num Dr. Sophie Savard and Dr. Anna Savard, Sophie’s cousin and best friend, want to start a medical school and hospital for disadvantaged women in the 1800s. Both doctors are women of color and have had their past experiences of prejudice and suspicion. Now, Dr. Sophie’s husband has died of tuberculosis in Europe and she has returned to New York. She’s had plenty of condolences and her own memories in grief to now process. But activities in the city quickly garner her interest and involvement. A number of deaths have occurred to women who were pregnant, went to a criminal doctor who punished them with surgery, infection and eventual death. But now that doctor is gone and there are still problems. The wife of a reputable banker has disappeared and another woman is found dead by very suspicious wounds which lead the investigators to believe the same type of murder has again occurred. Dr. Anna’s husband, Detective-Sergeant Jack Mezzanotte, asks the cousins to consult on the investigation. They agree to consult and gradually the story unfolds to show who the captors or kidnappers are and who has once again murdered.This is a tough and tender story that will grip every reader who is interested in both medicine and crime. The main characters are financially well-settled but still have enormous compassion for women who seek criminal doctors hoping to end pregnancies or illness. Women who are mistreated have multiple reasons to seek illicit treatment and the Savard doctors believe education and compassion will change the horrific nature of these losses. This is a timely subject as the nation is coping with the possibility of abortions becoming illegal as it was fifty years ago and earlier. It is not too hard to realize that these dark days could become reality again and that there are even now numerous women, both health care professionals and regular women, who seriously are concerned about this issue. Dr. Anna and her husband Jack, as well as Dr. Sophie stand for the protection of women’s rights. This would be an excellent novel to use in a book club or to share in other contemporary issue discussions.The topic is obviously well-research and is presented with all sides of the issues covered. Sara Donati is a highly-skilled, creative and talented writer. This, her latest novel, is highly recommended historical fiction!!! Enjoy the read!
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  • Candace
    January 1, 1970
    Many thanks to Edelweiss and the publisher for granting access to this perfect summer read!For me, "Where the Light Enters" is the ideal summer novel--long, rich plot and appealing characters. If it's been a while since you finished "The Gilded Hour," don't worry. Sarah Donati catches you up with a satisfying series of letters and newspaper articles at the beginning of the book. After that, you're in a good spot to take the story of 1880's doctor/cousins Anna and Sophie to the next level. What's Many thanks to Edelweiss and the publisher for granting access to this perfect summer read!For me, "Where the Light Enters" is the ideal summer novel--long, rich plot and appealing characters. If it's been a while since you finished "The Gilded Hour," don't worry. Sarah Donati catches you up with a satisfying series of letters and newspaper articles at the beginning of the book. After that, you're in a good spot to take the story of 1880's doctor/cousins Anna and Sophie to the next level. What's so good about this book is that not only does Donati strike a lot of notes (19th century female physicians, the anti-vice movement in New York, abandoned children, income disparity, immigration, race) each one of them resonates with authenticity. Not all mysteries are solved and not everyone ends up happy, but that means there will be another big, gratifying novel from Sarah Donati. After finishing "The Gilded House," I reread Donati's earlier novels. Now. I've run out. Sarah, I hope you're already at work in the next installment of Sophie and Anna's story.~~Candace Siegle, Greedy Reader
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  • Shannon
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you Penguin Publishing House for sending this so quickly, it arrived at perfect time. I so enjoyed remembering where the previous book ended and where this began. If we all could have families like this one, the world would be a better place. This one left off with a hint of more to come, I so look forward to reading the next in this series. I would recommend to anyone! even if you have not read the first book or any of her others, there are nods to another series she did. Thank you Sara f Thank you Penguin Publishing House for sending this so quickly, it arrived at perfect time. I so enjoyed remembering where the previous book ended and where this began. If we all could have families like this one, the world would be a better place. This one left off with a hint of more to come, I so look forward to reading the next in this series. I would recommend to anyone! even if you have not read the first book or any of her others, there are nods to another series she did. Thank you Sara for writing such awesomely strong female characters. No more, don't want to spoil anything. :)
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