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I like Tessa Dare, despite generally not liking the Regency genre, but this novel was a stinker. The main character is as Mary Sue as it gets, embodying the living legacy of her father's writing and inspiring a cult (yeah, definitely worthy of being called a cult) of Regency era LARPers who follow her around the country dressed in pretend armor and fanciful getups. This and other anachronisms made it incredibly hard to get a feel for what period this setting was actually meant to represent!
When an older gentleman (a godfather? I'm not clear on their relationship) leaves her some totally random castle in his will (seriously?) she moves in only to find it already inhabited by a very cranky duke. The rest of the story basically tells itself, so I won't bother to sum it up except to say that when the solicitor makes special mention of how this strange old man left broken-down castles to women all over the country, I literally groaned out loud. This is a series I will not be following.
I am disappointed once again with Ms. Dare, after an excellent start; I thought Ms. Dare had come back with a very good read. Only to have it dwindle into a silly fairytale. The plot was flimsy, and only the sex scenes take it out of the children’s section of books.
I am of course very aware of the many 5 star ratings, so obviously most do not share my view. I will say this author is very talented in dialogue. She had wonderful characters with great stories but reduced them to well….a fairy tale.
I mean this with the greatest respect to the author, but this book could be easily reworked and turned into a great story for young readers. There was a moral and lessons to be learned here. However, the one where Izzy our heroine learns that love is not about looks would be better taught if the hero were not blind.
I recommend it if you love reading Cinderella. Otherwise if you simply like Ms. Dare and want to read her new book, wait till it is not full price. This author IS very talented. But for me, I need an adult story with at least a passing glance at the time period and realistic plots.
I couldn't wait for another Tessa Dare. Loved most of her books, except for the novellas which I wouldn't bother with. I was shocked by this though. The hero was okay. It was ridiculous. Didn't care for the heroine. She was really dopey. Was she ugly? Pretty? You never get the answer. I guess because he is blind anyway so it doesn't matter but I hate it when authors do this, refrain from describing characters. The mock medieval army, I guess a 19th century version of reinactment, was ridiculous. There was no sizzle factor either. What happened Tessa?!!
I love Tessa Dare's books, but this one is just plain silly. There's a nice build up of tension until the inevitable happens but then it all falls apart to childishly written dialogue and equally childish plotting. Extremely disappointing.
I had such high hopes for this book after I downloaded the sample, alas it quickly took a left turn into ridiculous. Cosplay in a historical romance? As a fan of both all things geeky and of a variety of fandoms I was more than vaguely insulted at the heavy handed and completely preposterous mashup.
I'm realizing I'm just not a big Tessa Dare fan. This one has abundant silliness, from wink-wink fandom allusions (the Goodnight Tales inspire 19th century readers to dress up as medieval knights and ladies, and they have taglines, catchphrases, and nicknames that have to be Trekkie-inspired) to the local rector's daughter having nothing better to do that help the heroine clean the castle. There's a lot of near-ravishment and questionable choices from the hero, who is a watered-down Mr. Rochester, which comes with the territory, but I don't know if Dare sells his turnabout from "I'm so mad I should probably ravish her" to "I can't live without her and I won't let anything bad happen to her" in a believable or satisfying way. The line between escapist fun and silly disappointment is fine and subjective, but, for me, this falls on the side of the latter.