Top critical review
3 people found this helpful
on 10 December 2006
Johanna Lindsey has written lots of books based around the Malory family but this is one of the earlier books featuring Tony (Anthony), the fourth brother in age after Jason, Edward and James. Tony is a confirmed rake who notices Lady Roslynn Chadwick, a Scottish woman who has arrived in London, and sets out to charm her. Unfortunately for him Roslynn is looking for marriage - and only that - as she is trying to escape a potential forced marriage for her fortune from one of her Scottish relatives. In the end Tony marries her to rescue her from this problem (although he's hardly doing it for unselfish reasons) and although Roslynn accepts she insists that he continues to have a mistress - she is sure that he won't remain faithful to her so would rather know that he is definitely unfaithful than always worry.
I think it's this part of the book that I didn't like. Sometimes the "Big Misunderstanding" you seem to need in most romance books is a turn-off and in this case it is. Equally, although Anthony is described as stunningly attractive (of course!) his actual nature doesn't seem very appealing to me - he lies to Roslynn all the time to get his way, purposely tries to compromise her (mostly successfully) and generally moves his way through the book thinking pretty much only of himself. Until he decides he loves Roslynn, of course.
This is one of Johanna Lindsey's earlier books and it shows in the interactions between the characters; books written more recently tend to have the hero more sympathetic, understanding and less self-centred which fit far better with my modern reader's wishes. Still there's nothing intrinsically WRONG with this book, it just didn't work for me.
Historical details are patchy and the language is Regency mixed with American, as one expects from these sorts of authors. As one also often expects, we have the obligatory Scottish characters who speak in a broad Scottish dialect. It seems strange that there are so many Scottish people in American-authored Regencies - I suspect this is something to do with ancestors from Scotland or something.
I actually didn't find this book very romantic - the interactions between the two characters were lust rather than romance. I much preferred Lindsey's book "Say you love me" which was the story of Derek, son of Jason, which seemed to have more love and tenderness than this book. If you've not read either and want to give one a go, try that one rather than this, I think it would be less disappointing.