But Not Forever, A novel

Could she be everything you aren't, but somehow—still be you? 

It’s the year 2015 and Sonnet McKay is the daughter of a globe-trotting diplomat, home for the summer from her exotic life. Everything would be perfect if not for her stunning sister, whose bright star has left her in the shadows. In 1895, Emma Sweetwine is trapped in a Victorian mansion, dreaming of wings to fly her far from her mother, who gives her love to her sons, leaving nothing for her daughter. Fate puts them in the same house at the same moment, 120 years apart, and the identical fifteen-year-olds are switched in time. In their new worlds, Sonnet falls in love with a boy, Emma falls in love with a life, and astonishing family secrets are revealed. Torn, both girls want to still go home— but can either one give up what they now have?

But Not Forever is an enchanting story of love and longing, and the heart's ultimate quest to find where it belongs.


Von Schleh uses the time-travel devise to illustrate robust interior lives for her characters, and in the end, their romantic and familial verisimilitude enhances an already fabulous twist. Love and equality shape the past and future in this captivating tale.

—Kirkus Reviews


Romance and humor blend into family drama and time travel fun as Jan Von Schleh explores the past, balancing two vastly different timelines . . . But Not Forever is a stunning coming-of-age journey that keeps the page turning.

Seattle Book Review


But Not Forever by Jan Von Schleh is an intriguing, imaginative teenage tale with bits of suspense, modern life, history, fantasy, science fiction, mystery, family relationships, and family history all wrapped together—and is highly recommended. Five Stars.

Readers’ Favorite Book Reviews


This enchanting story follows the quest for belonging.



For fans of classics like Freaky Friday, this is the fantasy story you'll want to get lost in this year.

She Reads


If you can't get enough of all the unexplained magic in Once Upon a Time, this June release is one you'll want to keep an eye on.   

—Pop Sugar

But Not Forever: A Novel


On the Wings of a star, A novel ~ coming 2020

In Leyli’s painting, the black and white orca whale was force of nature, blasting like a rocket out of white-capped, green choppy waves. Its slippery body, caught in an arc of twisting beauty, lifted a torrent of bubbly water upwards against the pull of gravity, nose to the heavens . . . freed momentarily from Puget Sound as it lunged for the sun.

I stared at the poem I had written for Leyli as she presented her orca watercolor in front of the classroom that day. The poem I had burned into my heart.

Tranquil as a gift
Green earrings and blushing smile
Beckoning life’s grace

Beckoning life’s grace. I repeated it several times, whispering into the quiet of my room. I could have written that last line for myself . . . and maybe I had. Yearning, searching, beckoning for a life of understanding. To know. To be free, finally, with that knowing. Reaching for, and touching the sun.

I set the notebook on the bed and glanced over at my duffle bag. I didn’t have to figure this out right now. I would make my final decision in the morning.