Wednesday, May 4, 2016
By Julianne Donaldson
Genre Period Romance
Kate Worthington has longed to go to her childhood friend Henry's estate Blackmoore for as long as she can remember. At last her wishes are coming true. But making a deal with her meddlesome mother and dealing with the disdain of Henry's own mother, makes the visit to Blackmoore less than pleasurable. Can Kate escape her burdensome life and win her freedom, or is her heart already lost to Blackmoore and it's future heir?
A woodlark sings of heartache.
There's this funny little discussion that comes up at my book club occasionally about Julianne Donaldson's books and it basically comes down to this: Team Edenbrooke or Team Blackmoore. Those are her two book's (in case you didn't know). Everyone has their favorite and while I had only read Edenbrooke, and couldn't participate in the discussion, it was always assumed that I'd like Blackmoore better.
I finally got in the mood for a "regency romance" and cracked this one open. For some reason I thought it was going to have a murder in it or some other dark mystery. I was way off. Sure, because of the moors and the mysterious estate with secret passageways, it felt more Gothic and dark than Edenbrooke, but it really was and is a romance at heart.
And that romance is sooooo swoon-worthy! Donaldson sure know's how to capture your heart and squeeze the breath out of you! The relationship between Kate and Henry was wonderful. I loved the romance that simmered beneath the surface of their banter. I liked the emotions Kate's predicament evoked in me. Living back then as a woman must have been unbearable!
While I did enjoy this one I did have issues, (are we surprised?) The ending of this one irked me. I felt Donaldson wrote our characters into a hole with no happy way out. There was really nothing that could have been done. And while desperately romantic, Henry's declarations were not okay with me. I don't want to get all spoilery so I can't go into detail but I will say this: Love between two people isn't necessarily about sacrifice and compromise. I might have said this once, maybe even as little as a few weeks ago but now I see it differently. Love is about living your dreams and letting your partner live theirs. And supporting each other in those dreams. OK, I'm done being all preachy. I just really was bothered by the ending of this one and it was a huge disappointment to an otherwise wonderful story.
Should you read it?
I'd still recommend this one. It's a beautiful romance that plays with your emotions and makes you swoon and smile just beware the ending.