A Lady Awakened by Cecilia Grant
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Happiness is ... finding more books by a wonderfully enjoyable author at the rental book store.
Ms. Grant's debut heralded all the delicious things one can expect from her books: sensuality married with subtle humour and period-specific banter that truly enhances the characters' growth over the story arc.
She is excellent at writing characters who tread the fine line of acceptability or even jumped across it with glee. I also love that her characters are of the gentry and not nobility, with different sets of challenges to overcome and expectations of role in society.
She has a way of exploring her characters' inner landscapes to flesh them out with wit and thought. In this book, she pitted a conniving widow against a ne'er do well wastrel. I love how they transformed each other, by learning about one another so thoroughly, before they actually identified the affection and esteem each held for the other as love.
Some of my favourite passages:
Whose idea of good design was this? Why those awkward angles, and what could be the necessity for all that hair? If one believed, as the Bible and the Greek myths had it, that man had been created first and woman after, then one must conclude there had been some dramatic improvement in the process following that amateurish first attempt.
Oh how her disdain has changed over the course of the book.
"And are you my king?" Her eyes, in the mirror, stayed trained to his.
He shook his head. "Stablehand." She didn't resist as he brought her knee up; draped her leg over the chair's arm. "Great strapping stablehand who's caught the queen's eye and been summoned to service her in her chambers."
Role play can be so hot.
Mellifluous and thoroughly enjoyable.
Male protagonist: 4/5 stars
Female protagonist: 4/5 stars
Storyline: 4/5 stars
Pacing: 4/5 stars
Fun Factor: 4/5 stars
Repeat Reading Factor: 4/5 stars
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