Shadows of the City by Jocelyn Green ~ Book Review

February 15, 2021


Author: Jocelyn Green
Series: The Windy City Saga, Book 2
Genre: Christian Historical Fiction
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Release Date: February 2, 2021
Pages: 400

The one thing Sylvie Townsend wants most is what she feared she was destined never to have--a family of her own. But taking in Polish immigrant Rose Dabrowski to raise and love quells those fears--until seventeen-year-old Rose goes missing at the World's Fair, and Sylvie's world unravels.

Brushed off by the authorities, Sylvie turns to her boarder, Kristof Bartok, for help. He is Rose's violin instructor and the concertmaster for the Columbian Exposition Orchestra, and his language skills are vital to helping Sylvie navigate the immigrant communities where their search leads.

From the glittering architecture of the fair to the dark houses of Chicago's poorest neighborhoods, they're taken on a search that points to Rose's long-lost family. Is Sylvie willing to let the girl go? And as Kristof and Sylvie grow closer, can she reconcile her craving for control with her yearning to belong?


This was my first book by Jocelyn Green and it definitely won't be my last! This is the second book in the Windy City Saga and although it was pretty easy to follow this book along I would recommend you reading the first one just so you can have some background on Sylvie and Kristof. This story definitely has the element of mystery and suspense and although it's not focused on romantic love it does have some of that as well. This story has you traveling to  Chicago's World's Fair of 1893 and like I mentioned before it continues to the story of Sylvie although she is now older and has an adopted teen daughter Rose. 

Sylvie is a single mom. She takes in Rose as a child trying to discourage her father to leave her at the orphanage. She promises him that she would take care of her and protect her. Sylvie is definitely a mama bear and at times I found her to be too overprotective over Rose. At the same time Rose seems a bit selfish and hurtful in the way she tends to treat Sylvie. I do understand where she is coming from but  I was so upset every time she threw it in her face that she wasn't her true mother. Gah!! I felt so bad for Sylvie that I definitely excused her for being such a mama bear. 

When Rose disappears that's when the story definitely gets extremely interesting and it truly captivates you. There were some twists I was definitely not expecting but it definitely made the story. I also enjoyed the love story between Sylvie and Kristoff. Although it wasn't the focus it was there and it was so sweet and truly a perfect addition to the story. I do want to know if we will see Kristoff's brother again as he had his own story that I am not sure is quite finished yet. So I am very curious if we will see him again. 

The author does a spectacular job at the details in this story. She truly paints a vivid picture of what life was like inside the World's Fair and makes you feel like you are there. You can tell that she truly excels in researching her history and it definitely is evident in this story. If you haven't picked up anything by her I highly suggest that you do! (Especially if you like historical fiction!)

My Rating: 4 Stars/I really liked it! Excellent Read!

I received this book from the publisher. I was not required to post a positive review. All views expressed are only my own!

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Jocelyn Green inspires faith and courage as the award-winning and bestselling author of numerous fiction and nonfiction books, including 
The Mark of the King; Wedded to War; and The 5 Love Languages Military Edition, which she coauthored with bestselling author Dr. Gary Chapman. Her books have garnered starred reviews from Booklist and Publishers Weekly, and have been honored with the Christy Award, the gold medal from the Military Writers Society of America, and the Golden Scroll Award from the Advanced Writers & Speakers Association. She graduated from Taylor University in Upland, Indiana, with a B.A. in English, concentration in writing. She loves Mexican food, Broadway musicals, strawberry rhubarb pie, the color red, and reading with a cup of tea. Jocelyn lives with her husband Rob and two children in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Visit her at

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