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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rich Scottish Historical and a Sweet Love Story
This is the latest in Small's Border Chronicles (see full list below). I have reviewed all of them and find this one amazingly different from the others. But still, it's delightful.

If this is your first by Small, you should realize that she has a very different style and tells very complex stories. But if you can adjust your expectations from the typical...
Published on October 6, 2011 by Regan

versus
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not a great read
As a long time fan of Bertrice Small,I have to say that I'm really disapointed in this latest book. i think the whole Border thing has been a "yawn'. I have read The Kadin, Deceived, The O'Malley Saga, The Hetar Saga (which ended WAY too abruptly), and so many of her other early works and still re-read and enjoy all of them even though I know the books by heart. Not so...
Published on October 9, 2011 by M3


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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not a great read, October 9, 2011
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This review is from: Bond of Passion (Border Chronicles) (Paperback)
As a long time fan of Bertrice Small,I have to say that I'm really disapointed in this latest book. i think the whole Border thing has been a "yawn'. I have read The Kadin, Deceived, The O'Malley Saga, The Hetar Saga (which ended WAY too abruptly), and so many of her other early works and still re-read and enjoy all of them even though I know the books by heart. Not so with these Border books and this latest one is the worst.

I'm not saying that all Heroines need to be abducted and sold into a harem, but I kept waiting for SOMEthing exciting to happen. The whole trip to France and not a thing went wrong...PLEASE! And the "plain" thing...OK, I think we got it in the very beginning...she was plain but a wonderful woman. This was Love For All Time resurrected. Same theme: plain girl weds the Gorgeous guy. But wait...she has a knockout body so it's all good! Even some of the verbiage is the same in both books.

It's got to be tough coming up with new idea's for Romance books, but the World of Hetar series was great and very original. I don't know why Bertrice ended it quick. There was so much more that could have been done with it.

Do yourself a favor and skip this book and read or re-read some of her older stuff. MUCH better reading!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rich Scottish Historical and a Sweet Love Story, October 6, 2011
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This review is from: Bond of Passion (Border Chronicles) (Paperback)
This is the latest in Small's Border Chronicles (see full list below). I have reviewed all of them and find this one amazingly different from the others. But still, it's delightful.

If this is your first by Small, you should realize that she has a very different style and tells very complex stories. But if you can adjust your expectations from the typical romance to embrace her unique style, you will reap a rich reward as she plunges into a deep historical setting with well developed characters whose life experiences are realistic for the time, the 16th century, and the place (the border between Scotland and England). Small uses long narratives, repeated scenes told through different characters' eyes, "head hopping" from one character's perspective to another in rapid succession and a well woven tapestry of lives for a captivating story. One has to love the "historical" part of historical romance as Small gives you a lot of what was going on at the time, including even details of the food they ate. But it all contributes to a rich background. The stories are quite absorbing. This one is also quite different from the others and can be read as a stand alone.

In this story, set in Scotland beginning in 1565, we meet Annabella Baird, the oldest daughter of an insignificant border laird from the eastern border, who is wed to Angus Ferguson, the Earl of Duin. Angus lives in a castle on the sea in the west and was rumored to be a sorcerer. Though Annabella is plain (a theme repeated overmuch in the book), Angus wants a piece of her father's land, and having had a bad experience with a beautiful woman when he was 23, he is happy to have plain Annabella, believing she will be faithful.

Actually for Small, this story is quite tame. There are no strange twists as some of hers include, no heroes dying, no heroines forced to live with another man. Still, the love story is a sweet one. There are some setbacks and some tragedies but no "black moment." It is rich in the history of Mary, Queen of Scots and the tensions between England and Scotland, Mary and her cousin Queen Elizabeth, and the Catholic and the Protestants. One could have done without all the references (and direct insults) to Angus' "plain bride." Much of the story was about plain vs. beautiful women with a strong bias against the latter, which seemed unfair to me. In the end, the plain bride triumphed, of course. I can recommend this one.

The Border Chronicles:

A DANGEROUS LOVE
THE BORDER LORD'S BRIDE
THE CAPTIVE HEART
THE BORDER LORD AND THE LADY
THE BORDER VIXEN
BOND OF PASSION
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The woman is plain!, December 15, 2011
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This review is from: Bond of Passion (Border Chronicles) (Paperback)
Annabella is not beautiful like her sisters, she is rather plain. She is plain. She is plain-looking. People tell her she is plain to her face. Plain, Plain, Plain, Plain. Horrible writing. I wish I had underlined every reference to plain so I could give you a count. Did you know she is plain? Plain-looking? However, her husband likes her body, which is beautiful.

I have enjoyed many of Small's books over the years but this has to be the worst. I would find it difficult to believe that she had written it herself if she didn't incorporate so many of her worn-out euphamistic phrases like "love button", "love sheath". Come on, lady. Oh, and did you know that she is plain? This is a very trivial, poorly written book that doesn't even offer a decent storyline. Oh, I forgot that the lady is plain, which seems to be the whole story.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed for the First Time, October 16, 2011
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Like the reviewer before me I am a long time Bertrice Small Fan. I have nearly every one of her books on my Kindle. My favorites are also the earlier books, the Skye O'Malley Saga and The Kadin in particular. I enjoyed the Love Slave as well and even the Border Chronicles. Unfortunately through the Border Chronicles I noticed names being repeated frequently in books with very similar story plots, and this last book was truly awful. I give Bertrice Small 5 Stars for her earlier works and probably will continue to read her stories but they are getting to be too much about sex and less about history or adventure. They are way too predictable. I would have liked to have seen the descriptions and history I saw in Darling Jasmine or some of the humor I've enjoyed in earlier works. Please Ms. Small, give us back your true talents which are telling how a woman overcomes adversities, the daring evil doer, her devotion to family, and finding her true love along with the great historical scenes which make us feel like we are part of the book. I have nearly memorized the Kadin. I doubt I will memorize your latest work. At the same time I have thank you for the great fun I have had reading your early books over and over again. I hope to find better stories in the future.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable sixteenth century drama, October 5, 2011
This review is from: Bond of Passion (Border Chronicles) (Paperback)
In 1565 Scotland, the laird Of Rath arranges for his daughter Annabella Baird to marry the older Earl of Duin Angus Ferguson over the objection of his wife who insists her future son-in-law is a Catholic sorcerer. Angus is the most powerful laird on the western borders. He arranged a deal with the recently widowed French Queen Marie de Guise to protect her infant daughter, Queen Mary of Scotland from the machinations of the English who plot to have her wed to the royal heir Prince Edward. Over the years Annabella and Angus forge a strong caring relationship. Annabella is there for Queen Mary whose marriage to Lord Darnley is a battlefield in spite of a son James. Lady Duin tries to help Mary avoid Queen Elizabeth's scheme to incarcerate her on charges of treason. However, she and her spouse are happiest when together with their family.

The latest Border Chronicles (see The Border Lord and the Lady) is an enjoyable sixteenth century drama that brings to life the impact on others by the bitter rivalry between the female monarchs. The lead couple forges a Bond of Passion between them, but like many Scots and English are caught up in the cold war between the two queens. More a historical thriller that does not add anything new to the overly used rivalry, fans of the Elizabethan era will enjoy Bertrice Small's delightful tale of trying to remain loyal without becoming a victim.

Harriet Klausner
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The plot and writing style of this book is really straightforward, which is a refreshing change., October 19, 2011
By 
Bookaholics Reviewer (Bay Area, California) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Bond of Passion (Border Chronicles) (Paperback)
Bond of Passion by Bertrice Small
Historical Romance - Oct. 4th, 2011
4 stars

Annabelle Baird was married off to the Earl of Duin, Angus Ferguson, who wanted a piece of her father's land. Although theirs was a business like arrangement of their marriage, Annabelle and Angus found themselves admiring and falling in love with each other. Despite her lack of beauty, Angus finds himself respecting Annabelle who is passionate and loyal. To protect his clan and his wife, Angus is determined to stay out of politics, but with a storm brewing against the Scottish Queen Mary, can he really protect all that he loves? Will Annabelle be able to save her husband against the accusations of treason?

The plot and writing style of this book is really straightforward, which is a refreshing change. I've read too many stories of the hero and heroine fighting against their attraction to each other that it's a relief to finally read about a couple who gracefully fall in love with each other without all the contrived dramas. However, given Annabelle's character, it would be foolish for her husband, Angus to not fall in love with her. She's practical, resourceful, and brave without being excessively headstrong and stubborn. I like how she would do anything to protect her husband and her new home. Her loyalty is an admirable trait. Angus is definitely an alpha male, but he's also tender and considerate to his wife. I really like how he patiently wooed her even though they were married. His respect for his wife is touching.

If you are a looking for a Scottish romance that is different from the typical alpha-male-tames-headstrong-lass plot, you will enjoy Bond of Passion.

Reviewed by Pauline from the Bookaholics Romance Club
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit disappointing, November 10, 2011
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This review is from: Bond of Passion (Border Chronicles) (Paperback)
I have been reading Bertrice Small since Skye O'Malley was first published. I have to say, her recent books haven't been up to her usual standards. I have read all of her Border Chronicles, and I have to say, there didn't seem to be much substance. She seems to be writing them too fast, and isn't taking the time to give the characters any depth. I've also noticed, she repeats herself many times in them, which is distracting.

Bond of Passion almost drove me crazy. I considered going through it, and counting how many times they said this poor girl was "plain of face". I'm surprised she didn't have an issue with self-esteem! Even her family kept telling her how plain she was! But, she had a beautiful body, so apparently that helped her husband climb into her bed. More than halfway through the book, he finally decided that she had a good heart, so that also made up for her lack of beauty. Yeah, I miss her old style of writing.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bond In Passion by Betrice Small, November 18, 2011
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This review is from: Bond of Passion (Border Chronicles) (Paperback)
This is a new book for Betrice Small. I have all her books. They will hold your interest from cover to cover. I feel the way she writes you feel like you are there. From describing the food to the clothes to how the castles look. The love scenes are very tasteful I love all her books and can't wait till she does it again.

I am so glad that I started buying my books from Amazon becaue the town I live in dooesn't have a book store. This way in a few days I go to the mailbox and start my adventure.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book, November 3, 2011
By 
Sherry M. Kramer (Staten Island, New York United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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I love all of Bertrice Small's writings. I received this book in a quick and
timely fashion. I would order from this vendor again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bertice Small hits another home run with this one, June 14, 2012
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Bertrice Small is my favorite author and as always she has written another winner! Exciting, sensual, grabs you from the first page and keeps you reading until its done. Always leaves me wanting to read more about the characters. You don't have to have read the other Border Chronicles to pick up this Book its a series or collection but not necessary to read in any specific order like some of her other collections. A great read.
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Bond of Passion (Border Chronicles)
Bond of Passion (Border Chronicles) by Bertrice Small (Paperback - October 4, 2011)
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