"Lady in Waiting" by Susan Meissner is the intwined stories of current day Jane Lindsay, and Tudor-era Lady Jane Grey. Each woman's story was so compelling that I did not want to leave one behind for the other, but when I would reach the point where the story reverted, I was so involved in whatever one I was reading that it happened all over again! In the end both parts tie together nicely, so it is worth the intervening cliff-hangers.
Present Jane tells her story in her own words, but past Jane's story is told through Lucy's eyes. I liked that Ms. Meissner did not give immediate see-through parallels of the two Janes, but instead slowly drew out the similarities. Each Jane discovers that she is responsible for her own choices, but it does not read as a feminist diatribe. Instead it is a gradual awakening to the ability that God gives us to chose how we will respond to Him and others. We are not puppets, but instead gifted with the ability to control our own responses to the situations God allows to confront us.
This is a carefully written story, with very real and identifiable emotions. Most of the historical references were very accurate and the modern portion was very relatable. I was a little disappointed that Jane Lindsay did not have more of a spiritual experience, but you can definitely see all of the Christian influences around her, even though she is not a believer. Lucy carries most of the spiritual weight of the book- in real life Lady Jane Grey was a strong believer and much of the conversation about God occurs between Lucy and Lady Jane.
Each Jane feels the victim of her circumstances, especially in the area of relationships. Jane Lindsay's husband has recently separated from her, and she begins to wonder if he was really the right person all along. Lady Jane feels that she has no choice in her relationships because they are all carefully planned political matches made by her parents. The ring Lady Jane is given by one of her suitors makes its way into Jane Lindsay's hands and that is the basis for the connection between them. Tracing the story of the ring in both eras guides us through the maturing of both women. And it is a very interesting journey indeed.
I was given a copy of "Lady in Waiting" by Waterbrook in exchange for my unbiased review. Please check out my review at their site and rank it!