I am afraid to say that this book defeated me - I failed to finish it ...... purely because it failed to grab my imagination.
Plus there were so many eye-rolling moments, I kept losing concentration, and thus interest.
Right from the start, I started off being confused by the sheer amount of dialogue, and having to re-read to get the gist and decide who said what. etc. For me personally I like a plot to be established before too much of that goes on.
Also, bearing in mind that this is an Historical romance the language used was too contemporary. Would it not be highly unlikely for a Heroine to have behaved in that way the social restrictions of the age in which it was set? The use of the word "bangs" got me reaching for the final few nails in the coffin of reading it to the bitter end. Don't get me wrong, I am not asking for flowery Georgian phrases all the way through, but try to be realistic about speech of the period that you are writing in. Indeed, I frequently overlook the use of "blocks" when referring to how far away point A was from point B .... we don't have blocks here in England!!!!
Other things that bothered me:
- I'm no Historian, but being English and having grown up with the class system I would most soundly question the fact that even a Scottish Duke (are there any of those apart from Royal ones anyway) would have spoken with such a pronounced accent?
- Even the most self-absorbed Heroines would have noticed that she was heading into the barren waste lands and not going towards London, how much research did the author do on the geographical features in the UK as there is a marked difference between Northmberland and say Northamptonshire Oxfordshire or Berkshire.
- The phrase "put something on the table" most certainly would not have been uttered even 30 years ago let alone in Regency/Victorian England -I couldn't quite decide exactly when the book was set (I do like it when an author actually puts the date at the start, or it is obviously early on by an historical reference i.e. Waterloo, Prinny).
I realise that producing a body of work is a very challenging undertaking, and please don't construe this as disrespectful (we are after all entitled to our own opinions) but I am afraid I have only awarded half * a star because of all of the above. It could be that I have been spoilt by the likes of Liz Carlyle, Mary Balogh, Lisa Kleypas, Stephanie Laurens, Gaelen Foley, Georgette Heyer and Victoria Holt in the past of course........even BLUSH Barbara Cartland (I finished all of her books by the way). Please read it and give me your opinion I would be most interested to hear it.
If I can take away anything from trying to read this book is hope that my own humble efforts might stand a chance of being published.
I have a nice Gaelen Foley waiting for me next ........... although I do wish I could find some more authors of a decent historical calibre.