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A Shadow's Bliss (Tales of the Jewelled Men, Vol 4) Hardcover – April, 1994

4.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Veryan's fluid prose and skill at plot development again distinguish this fourth volume in the Tales of the Jewelled Men series, set in Georgian England. Washed ashore in the South of England, Jonathan awakens with amnesia except for the memory of a deed for which he must do lifelong penance. Though it's obvious from his speech and demeanor that he is an educated man, he is called Crazy Jack by most of the residents of the Cornwall village and is scorned and beaten by its unemployed miners. Only a few people befriend him: Widow Newlyn, a suspected witch, one-handed Noah Holsworth, who gives him work, and Jennifer Britewell, the the local schoolteacher (and daughter of the local patrician landowner). Jonathan secretly loves Jennifer, who is being harassed by Lord Hibbard Green, a hateful man who seeks her hand in marriage because he covets the Blue Rose Tin Mine on her father's property. As Jonathan's protection helps Jennifer rebuff Green and her growing attraction to him helps Jonathan slowly recover his memory, the two find themselves caught up with the League of Jewelled Men, who have been accused of a treasonable conspiracy against the British government. Veryan's attention to historical details enlivens a colorful romantic tale.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

In this fourth volume of the Tales of the Jewelled Men series, Veryan sets the scene in a woeful village in Cornwall. Here Jonathan, perceived as the village idiot for his refusal to raise a hand in self-defense and his spells of forgetfulness that impel him into manic activity, falls madly in love with the schoolmarm, who happens to be the lady from the castle. August Falcon and Lieutenant Morris arrive on the scene in pursuit of the Jewelled Men (highly placed conspirators against the Crown of England). Jonathan is called upon to help track down evidence and in doing so regains his identity, for, it seems, he was also a victim of these evil conspirators. Veryan outdoes herself in creating a complete work of fiction that is also a spellbinding piece within the whole series. Denise Perry Donavin
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Product Details

  • Series: Tales of the Jewelled Men, Vol 4
  • Hardcover: 324 pages
  • Publisher: St Martins Pr; 1st edition (April 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312105436
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312105433
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,159,843 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I really liked this one. I thought the plot was better developed than the others I have read in this serise (Books 2&3). It was amazing really, the plot kept thickening and thickening until I thought she would never be able to pull it out but she did manage remarkably. Only the fate of Jennifer's family was left out. I enjoyed the main love interests in this one as well. I do tend to go in for tortured lovers but they were really a solid pair. I thought that the superstions of Cornwall made a nice background to the story and were a pleasent change from her usual settings. This book also answerd some questions I had after a previous book. All-in-all a good read but I would definitely recomend reading it in order in the Serise.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is another great entry into the golden chronicles, with new characters introduced who are entirely lovable in themselves.

Old favorites make an appearance, as they continue to do throughout this series. Wonderful Jamie and Haughty August come through the town and we have some brillant scenes between the two of them along with the duel threats that come whenever August is involved. (are you sensing the infatuation? My favorite character! Mandarin of Mayfair is his book)...

So we have a great pair of new lovers, and continuing relationships with our favorite people who haven't made the perfect match yet.

Down to the nitty gritty:

Jennifer Britewell is a lovely heroine & her kindness to the man who has lost his memory is entirely believeable and in keeping with her proven nature.

As he struggles to regain his memory and they are threatened by savage strangers who desire her home (which is slightly decrepit but very scenic)they are thrown together and romance developes.

One of the marvellous things about Patricia Veryan as an author is the very believability of her settings. Without boring one with the visitors guidebook, or banging us over the head with the history of a place, she manages to imbue her books with the very feel of the environs.

Windswept Cornwall descends into your living room as you read this book, and Jonathon & Jennifer are wonderful.

Romances are always incredibly touching & leavened with gentle humor:
"Jennifer, please stop! My beautiful... dearest girl... I cannot bear to see you cry."
At this, her eyes opened very wide. "You-you're weeping, too..." she gulped.
"I know," he said. And lost to everything but her grief, added with a tender smile, "You hit me in the eye."

heh heh
ABSOLUTELY BRILLANT. Read all her books. Veryan is the best regency/georgian author.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Reading a 20 year-old Veryan is a bit like sliding into similar vintage winter slippers. Familiar. Comfy. Warm.
It would be a mistake, however, to underate A Shadow's Bliss (I love the title, borrowed from Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice). It proves Veryan to be a most competent writer. And, if imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, Veryan can feel plenty of kudos. It is clear, for example, that her Jewelled Men series has been used as a resource and inspiration by many HR authors in the subsequent two decades.
I liked this story - in part, because of the Cornwall setting, the touches of whimsy and even, surprisingly, the visitations by a ghostly lady. All highly implausible, as is much of the mystery, but who cares?
I mainly enjoyed the h and H. She is kind and lovely and generous and beautiful - verging on the overly gentle and loyal and even too saint-like, until she is brave when it matters. He is tormented and amnesiac and honourable and honest and downright gorgeous. Yes - almost unbelievable himself. But, in the end, mainly downright gorgeous.
I don't remember reading the preceding books in this series, but that didn't seem to matter, as I found it possible to read this as a standalone.
The adventure/mystery is OK, the prose is good, the romance sigh-worthy and the cast of characters very well drawn.
Enjoyable.
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