Sunday, August 16, 2009
A wrathful stepfather plans to force his innocent daughter to murder a brave warrior, recently widowed-but the brutal old man never counts on the saving power of love.
This book was just okay, a medieval by an author I've never read before. Just a short review, since I'm annoyed I even wasted my time reading this romance.
Taking place in England, it's the story of "the Slayer", Christian de la Croix who has the terrible reputation of murdering his dead wife in order to save the child she carried. But in truth, she was already dead when he performed a make shift C-section on her and saved his heir, Simon. But, of course, during medieval times, this was considered a heinous act and hence - his reputation as a ladykiller - literally.
Enter Clarise duBoise whose family is being held hostage by a great and terrible Scottish warrior who is at war with Christian. It's complicated, but Clarise has been sent to disguise herself and poison Christian, or else her mother and two sisters will be hanged. Clarise is desperate and manages to infiltrate "the Slayers" castle by taking care of his newborn son as a wet nurse. But, she has lied about being able to nurse him, since she is a maiden and must feed him with goat's milk. This is not easy having to sneak in a pail of goat's milk. In fact for a good part of this book I was more interested in how Clarise was going to feed this baby than any kind of burgeoning romance between Clarise and Christian which is very slow and tedious. Clarise cannot bring herself to poison Christian afterall, since she feels he is a good man at heart and she hopes that she might be able to get him to help her vanquish this evil Scot that holds her family hostage - but first she must tell him the truth about herself, that she is really a highborn lady. Does she? Not exactly, since he finds out anyway since he is curious about her and attracted to her as soon as they meet.
There is some intrigue in the book and a little mystery of who is trying to harm Simon, the baby, but for the most part, the romance is tepid and I barely liked Christian. On one hand, he's a mighty and fearful warrior who has an unforgiving nature. But, then we find out that he was raised in a convent until the age of 12 - how could he have changed so much from a saintly child to this fearsome warlord? I didn't think his character was believable or amiable, frankly - not even sexy! Clarise's character wasn't much either, I just didn't care all that much about this story, the hero and heroine or anything - what a waste of time! I felt like it took me forever to get through this - but I did and feel like a deserve a pat on the back for not just giving up on it long ago. Fortunately, it's a short book, just over 300 pages. I'm sorry I read it, but it had been highly recommended to me. All I can say is, unless you are a die hard medieval fan, don't waste your time on this one, there are plenty of other medievals that are much, much better.