today I’m reviewing three historical romance novels. If you like the genre, read on:
Gentle from the night by Meagan Mckinney
This unconventional Victorian romance novel is set in Yorkshire. John Damien Newell, the master of Cairncross Castle, hires the young Alexandra to teach his brother, who had been abused and traumatized as a child, to speak again. Here she will not only find love with a man who has been deeply scarred by his past, but will become entangled in a web of lies, secrets and mysteries. I really like Alexandra. Unlike most heroine of romance novels, Alexandra is smart, sensible and even though she doesn’t run away from trouble, she doesn’t go looking for it either. Damien on the other hand is one of those dark heroes who often cross the line between good and bad. That can be both fascinating and offputting, depending on whether you like really bad boys or not. I don’t particularly like them, but still I was intrigued by his relationship with Alexandra. Another main character is Cairncross Castle. Its gloomy and oppressive atmosphere is the perfect setting for such a dark romance novel. Instead, what I really didn’t care about was the supernatural element in the story. The reader is left wondering whether something spooky is really happening or if there’s a sick person trying to scare people in the castle, and the end doesn’t explain the mystery in a satisfying way, which was quite frustrating. Overall, it’s a well-written, well-plotted story that I recommend to those who are looking for an unconventional, supernatural historical romance novel.
Available at: amazon
No Other Woman by Shannon Drake
Laird David Douglas comes back from the dead to figure out if the beautiful Shawna MacGinnis was the one who betrayed him years earlier, causing him to lose everything he ever had. David doesn’t tell many people he’s back because he’s convinced that only secrecy will enable him to discover what he really wants to know. But his quest for the truth is full of obstacles and, to make matters worse, he also needs to protect Shawna. Some cloaked figure seems, in fact, determined to kill her. This is a book full of mysteries and secrets, but unfortunately I found the plot quite weak and at times unconvincing, which, together with the forced seductions, really spoiled the book for me. I think that it is, overall, a nice story that should have been better developed. I’m sure Drake fans will love it, but it isn’t one of her best works.
Available at: amazon.com
I Thee Wed by Amanda Quick
This is not Amanda Quick’s best work, but it’s quite enjoyable anyway. Edison Stokes is looking for a thief who has stolen an ancient book of arcane potions, including one that can make a highly intuitive person see what others can’t. When he realises the potion may work on Emma Grayson, he enlists her help. Thus, Emma faces two dangers: being harmed by the thief and falling in love with her boss, which, in Regency England, where reputation for a young and single girl is everything, is almost as dangerous. Emma, like most Quick’s heroines, isn’t a silly and vain idiot. Instead, she’s clever, sensible, strong-willed and capable, and it’s easy to see why Edison falls for her. The dialogue is also pretty witty and fun to read. However, I found the whole mysterious plot, including the Vanza society (a secret society where members are taught a particular philosophy and way of fighting, think Star Wars) a bit too far-fetched at times, which really spoiled the book imo. I would have enjoyed the story more without all the Vanza philosophy, but since this belong to a series that focuses on that society, it obviously just had to be included. But I won’t read any other book in the series. I’d still recommend I Thee Wed though, if anything because the characters are interesting and the dialogue witty, which is more than you can say for most trashy romance novels on the market.
Available at: amazon.com
Have you read these books? If so, did you like them?