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A Year of Light and Shadows: A romantic suspense anthology (Contains the novellas Palace of Deception and The Scottish Diamond) Kindle Edition
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This book reminds me of the Prince and Me. Simply because of story about some still existing royalty in Europe. In this story, the main character--Lizzie, was asked to impersonate a princess. To pretend and act like her until the coronation is done. Since she is an actress, it will not be hard for her to play the part. All the other aspects of the impersonation will be taken care of the members of the royal household.
So, Lizzie did what was required of her only to find out that she was conned. The real reason for the subterfuge was not what she thought it was. If she had known, she would not have agreed to the proposal, even if the pay was very good. The only good thing out of the whole experience was Leon, the bodyguard.
Yes, this sounds like the movie The Bodyguard. The girl falls in love with her bodyguard as the case with Lizzie. It was probably because, it was only Leon who was true to her while she was pretending to be the princess. Add in the fact that it was Leon who protected and saved her from almost getting killed. Good job Leon!
I am not sure if the curse about the Macbeth play is also true to all other theater groups. Oops! Am I not supposed to say that word too? Anyway, the supposed curse was playing havoc among the minds of Lizzie and the rest of the production crew. And then, there is this matter of the Scottish Diamond. I find this part of the story very clever. I really enjoyed the unraveling of the mystery of the diamonds.
I give this book 4/5 tiaras. I did enjoy this story. Especially the part about the diamonds. It was nicely done. I actually felt bad for not reading this soon. I am looking forward to reading more stories from the same author.
The ending was good enough for me. And it made sense too, since it seemed that Leon has a talent for storytelling. Leon deserved to find something good for himself without the shadow of his past always following him around. The ending wrapped the three-part story neatly. No objections from me there.
Just hand over the chocolate and back away slowly.
- Helena Fairfax, A Year of Light and Shadows -
This is a voluntary review. I was gifted a copy.
A Year Of Light and Shadows is a three book anthology, the stories all connecting and following on.
Book 1: Palace Of Deception. Set in the fictional southern Europe principality of Montverrier, this is the tale of Scottish actress Elizabeth Smith, who has been offered a summer job impersonating a missing Princess. She must take the place of Princess Charlotte at a royal investiture ceremony. For five weeks Elizabeth is housebound at the castle learning her character role. Full time bodyguard Léon, rarely leaves her side and they become good friends.
Book 2: The Scottish Diamond. Elizabeth and Léon return to her home town of Edinburgh, Elizabeth to her drama school where they rehearse for Macbeth and tries to find a job. An exhibition at the castle of the famous "Scottish Diamond" offers Léon work, until once again they find themselves embroiled in the plans of the Royal family of Montverrier.
Part 3 is a short story. A Question by Torchlight. Hogmonay celebrations in Scotland and Elizabeth fears she will lose Léon. Can the Italian ever settle in dreary Scotland?
This is a captivating and well written set of stories and is a quick read at just 179 pages in total.
The first one was my favorite! I would really give that one 5 stars (and the others 3.5 - 4 stars). Palace of Deception almost reminded me of The Princess diaries a little. Only instead of learning how to and preparing to act and look like the real princess - in this story Lizzie is an actress and is standing in for the real princess and will have to learn how to be her so no one knows she is a fake. It was all very exciting, original and kind of sweet and romantic. Very well done!
The middle story - The Scottish Diamond - started out good, then got a little slow for me, but then picked back up and I ended up loving it. It got very exciting, a lot of action.
And the last story - A Question by Torchlight - was very short but was also very sweet! :-)
Great character development, again, especially in the first story. I really loved Lizzie!
And they almost had a fairy tale quality to them. Which was nice, who doesn't love a great fairy tale!?
Definitely worth picking up and giving a try!
I voluntarily posted this review after receiving a copy of this book from the author, Helena Fairfax - Thank you!
I really liked this set of stories. They were very well written with characters that are memorable. The idea behind the stories was unique. I loved that Montverrier was a continued theme. It made the three stories truly connected. The three stories are quick reads that would be great for anyone looking to get roped into a stories but not have the time for large book. The mystery and bit of romance really connects the reader to the characters. If you are looking for a good set of characters with an engrossing story but don’t have the time to commit to a series or long book, this book is the one for you. You won’t regret picking this up.
***Received this book in exchange for an unbiased review***