Synopses & Reviews
Love is a choice you make every day.
Content in her comfortable marriage of twenty-two years, Jane Lindsay had never expected to watch her husband, rad, pack his belongings and walk out the door of their Manhattan home. But when it happens, she feels powerless to stop him and the course of events that follow Brad’s departure.
Jane finds an old ring in a box of relics from a British jumble sale and discovers a Latin inscription in the band along with just one recognizable word: Jane. Feeling an instant connection to the mysterious ring bearing her namesake, Jane begins a journey to learn more about the ring—and perhaps about herself.
In the sixteenth-century, Lucy Day becomes the dressmaker to Lady Jane Grey, an innocent young woman whose fate seems to be controlled by a dangerous political and religious climate, one threatening to deny her true love and pursuit of her own interests.
As the stories of both Janes dovetail through the journey of one ring, it becomes clear that each woman has far more infl uence over her life than she once imagined. It all comes down to the choices each makes despite the realities they face.
"Veteran author Meissner (White Picket Fences) blends past and present in this compelling novel about making choices. Jane Lindsay never thought she'd be alone, but after her husband leaves her, she must face the reality of her marriage and life choices. One small ring, found in the binding of a book bought at an English rummage sale, changes the course of Jane's thinking as she researches another Jane, whose name is inscribed in the ring. Readers jump back in time to England after the death of Henry VIII. Lucy Day is ordered to Sudeley Castle, bearing a dress for Lady Jane Grey. Lucy narrates the tale of Lady Jane, pawn in the schemes of powerful men who seek the throne of England even as young Jane Grey is determined to live--and die--on her own terms. Modern Jane studies Lady Jane, coming to realize that she alone must choose how she lives. Both the history and the modern tale are enticing, with Meissner doing a masterful job blending the two. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
Jane finds an old ring in a box of relics from a British jumble sale and discovers a Latin inscription in the band along with just one other word: Jane. Feeling instant connection to the mysterious ring bearing her namesake, Jane begins a journey to learn more about the ring--and its original 16th-century owner, Lady Jane Grey.
About the Author
Susan Meissner has spent her lifetime as a writer, starting with her first poem at the age of four. She is the award-winning author of The Shape of Mercy, White Picket Fences, and many other novels. When she’s not writing, she directs the small groups and connection ministries at her San Diego church. She and her pastor husband are the parents of four young adults. Visit her Web site at www.susanmeissner.com.
Reading Group Guide
1. Did you find yourself drawn more to the story of modern-day Jane or long-ago Lady Jane? Why?
2. Why do you think Jane conditioned herself to defer to others when an important decision had to be made? Can you relate?
3. What have you learned about yourself or life or God when you’ve had to wait? Do you consider yourself a patient person?
4. A quote by the French philosopher Diderot is mentioned in chapter 3. “What has never been doubted has never been proven.” Do you think that is true? Do you think this quote holds any significance to Jane Lindsay?
5. Do you think it’s conceivable that Jane truly saw no signs that Brad was unhappy? Why or why not?
6. Does Jane Lindsay’s mother have any redeeming qualities? Is there anything about her personality that makes her admirable? What about Lady Jane Grey’s mother?
7. What do you think Lucy Day’s strengths were? Why do you think she gave personality traits to the dresses in Jane’s wardrobe?
8. When Jane Lindsay’s mother has the clock fixed, Jane has a hard time thinking of it as the same clock. Is it the same clock? Do you approve of what her mother did? Would you have had the clock fixed? Why or why not? Why do you think some people are drawn to antiques?
9. In the end, Jane decides to stand by Brad during his crisis. What do you think of her decision?
10. If you had lived during the sixteenth century, would you have wanted to be a commoner, a noble, or a royal? Why?
11. Professor Claire Abbot tells Jane Lindsay that Lady Jane Grey was not entirely without choice; had she chosen to, she could’ve refused the crown and escaped to the North with the man she loved. What do you think of this suggestion? If Jane Grey had done something like this, how would it alter your opinion of her?
12. Where do you see Jane and Brad Lindsay in ten years? What do you think Jane Lindsay does with the ring?