- File Size: 674 KB
- Print Length: 211 pages
- Publisher: Carina Press (March 25, 2013)
- Publication Date: March 25, 2013
- Sold by: Harlequin Digital Sales Corp.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00APEYANY
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #425,851 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Harlequin Digital Sales Corp.
Price set by seller.
Lord of Secrets Kindle Edition
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|Length: 211 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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Rosalie believes herself to be unattractive, unsophisticated, and a poor match for her husband, the toplofty, dour and reclusive Lord Deal. Deal has cut himself off from society and considers himself to bed "utterly depraved" and no fit mate for a sweet innocent like Rosalie. Deal has enough honor left that he has promised himself that he will not consummate the marriage until he has confessed all to Rosalie, at which point he expects her to flee in horror. She, on the other hand, has no idea why he shows no interest in making love to her in the days and weeks after their marriage.
Deal's secret, which goes back to his youth, is indeed shocking, yet when he finally confesses, Rosalie is horrified only by what he has had to endure. In return for Deal "rescuing" her aboard ship after her father's sudden death, she helps rescue him from his demons.
The story is beautifully written, without the intrusion of modern language or attitudes. Extreme patience is required,however, as the reader does not learn about Deal's secrets any sooner than Rosalie does, which is near the end of the book.
Definitely recommended. I plan to go back and read AE's two earlier books, now published by Carina Press. I'm so please that she was finally able to extricate herself from the mess left by Dorchester Publishing's sudden demise.
So he has a big, ugly, unforgivable secret that has colored all his perceptions of his past and prevents him from making her his wife in truth. She feels very much at sea in her new role and his rejection isn't helping matters.
His position remains adamant, creating a constant refrain in his mind of 'I am depraved and unworthy, so off to bed you go alone, dear.' It was 'I can't tell her, she'll hate me,' for much of the story. (After just a few iterations, I'd have gotten his point.) All during this time, she tries to understand him but her own insecurities get in the way. Still, she has a knack, well established, for caring for others, for gleaning their needs and for patience with the recalcitrant, so she is balm to his old wounds. When it finally comes, the big resolution felt sketchy given how thoroughly ingrained were his habits of thought. In effect, all was resolved after a long-overdue conversation, in which she asks him yet again, 'Is it me, or what?' When he reveals his secret to her, throwing it in her face like a challenge, she gently makes some very smart, rational observations, after which it's suddenly 'Oh. Maybe I'm not such a louse after all.'
His past was heartrending when at last it came to light, but his flat, vague and constant refusals up till then wore on me without making me feel more suspense or sympathy or whatever I was supposed to feel. A traumatic past isn't healed overnight or by a few cogent comments that make one think differently, but that's how this came across to me. Despite this abruptness, how they meet and end up married, how she wins his trust and he her acceptance is truly romantic and very well written.
Rosalie Whitwell's father is an avid traveler and has taken her across the world. She has felt the lack of a stable home, social polish and grace, and fine clothing, but she greatly enjoys the time she shares with her father, as well as her cousin Charles, who often accompanies them. Unfortunately, on their transatlantic cruise from New York to London, Rosalie's father passes away and Rosalie must deal with both her grief and her fears about her future and very likely, uncertain, life. There are few options available to her, as she cannot live with her unmarried cousin Charles and the Uncle with whom she would mostly likely reside has a reputation as a drunk and a lecher.
Fortunately, Lord Deal is also on the cruise. Despite his reclusive and unfriendly manner throughout the cruise, he comes to Rosalie's aid when she discovers her father's body and begins to speak to her occasionally thereafter. Though he seems to run hot and cold, Rosalie is attracted to him and her instinct is that he is a good man: when he gives her an offer of marriage before they disembark she accepts in the hopes of a good marriage, a stable home, and possibly, love. All of this continues to be possible despite Lord Deal's desperate request that she end the engagement because he is a bad person. Rosalie ignores him, but she becomes extremely concerned about Lord Deal's seeming unwillingness to consummate the marriage. While she knows he has inadvertently suffered as a consequence of his father's suicide, she doesn't know about a much darker and disturbing aspect of his childhood that has irrevocably shaped him.
Rosalie is a very nice heroine. I didn't find her overwhelmingly naïve, as other reviewers have suggested, but just really in the dark about her husband's tormented past. Lord Deal doesn't tell her too much about his life whereas the reader has far more information than she about potential causes of Lord Deal's reclusiveness and unwillingness to consummate the marriage. I liked Rosalie as a character because she was kind and loving, but also intelligent and willing to speak up for herself. I could understand, based on her motherless and travel vagabond upbringing, why she might be self-conscious. Her behavior was always reasonable and I think her need to be useful made sense within the context of the marriage: it was reasonable for her to believe that Lord Deal partially made his offer out of pity and it seemed to me she was just doing her best to make the bargain good for him as well.
As for Lord Deal - Everett did a really good job with this tortured hero - some tortured heroes are over-the-top, boring, unrealistic, or pathetic. Lord Deal was none of these, but rather an intelligent and sensitive man who experienced great pain, especially in his childhood and teen years, and loneliness as an adult. I liked, too, how Everett was consistent about how Lord Deal was actually depicted - I've read romances where the "lonely" hero has like seventy friends. Lord Deal doesn't have any friends, his dog just died, and I felt like the path he took as a young adult made sense within the context in which his past was described. It made sense why he would have been immediately captivated by Rosalie's gracious, kind, and funny manner.
Lastly, I really liked that that a significant amount of the novel's narrative was given to the hero's perspective. Even though Rosalie suffered from doubt's about her husband's feelings, the reader doesn't have to!
The length was perfect (there were actually a few issues that needed to be resolved within the story so from my perspective, it was not unduly drawn out), the writing was very good, and I experienced no formatting issues. Definitely recommend for a nice, angsty read with sweet characters! You will enjoy:)
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The writing seemed rather heavy-handed to me.Read more