Hearts of Steel (The Blackstone Legacy)

Written by Elizabeth Camden
Review by Beth Kanell

With her third in the Blackstone Legacy series, Elizabeth Camden brings the handsome and highly competent steel magnate Liam Blackstone to Gilded Age Manhattan in 1902. Almost immediately, he sees Maggie Molinaro in action, as the young woman tackles the city’s great scoundrel Charles Morse over nonpayment of her invoice for ice cream. When Liam opts to show Maggie how to maneuver in the city’s political morass, he’s heartened by her quick success as well as her admiration for him.

But success is short-lived, as Morse prefers his revenge piping hot, and Maggie faces a combination of supply chain issues, labor loss, and deliberate damage to her dreamed-of ice cream factory. Meanwhile Liam’s clever scheme to remove Morse’s influence from the steel company board also focuses this powerful enemy on him.

With a delicate hand, Camden paints a gradual awareness of the Holy Spirit growing in Liam, as he pursues a true partnership of both heart and strength. If he and Maggie can handle the powerful enemies of their time, what else might they forge together?

Camden writes with abundant detail of this exhilarating and complex time in the nation’s industrial revolution, and with insight into how friendship and joy can deepen into love. She even tackles how forgiveness may blossom despite, or because of, adversity and loneliness. Hearts of Steel has only slight connections to the two earlier books in this series, but the pleasure of this action-romance should draw readers to these novels featuring other members of the Blackstone dynasty, Carved in Stone and Written on the Wind (both opening in 1900).