FAIRY TALES #2
Miss Linnet Berry Thrynne is a Beauty . . . Naturally, she’s betrothed to a Beast.
Piers Yelverton, Earl of Marchant, lives in a castle in Wales where, it is rumored, his bad temper flays everyone he crosses. And rumor also has it that a wound has left the earl immune to the charms of any woman.
Linnet is not just any woman.
She is more than merely lovely: her wit and charm brought a prince to his knees. She estimates the earl will fall madly in love—in just two weeks.
Yet Linnet has no idea of the danger posed to her own heart by a man who may never love her in return.
If she decides to be very wicked indeed . . . what price will she pay for taming his wild heart?
I loved this book and it more than made up for my disappointment with A Kiss at Midnight! Ms James manages to put a refreshingly different spin on a much loved fairy tale.
Meet the Beast
Crippled Piers Yelverton, Earl of Marchant, is a brilliant doctor but he is bad-tempered, sarcastic and to say his bedside manner leaves much to be desired is definitely an understatement. Now, unless you’ve been living in Outer Mongolia for several years, I’m sure you’ll already know that Ms James based Piers on the cantankerous Dr Gregory House. Well, here in the UK, we have a TV series called Doc Martin and I can assure you that Dr Martin Ellingham could give Dr House a run for his money any day!
“Why must I say things I don’t mean, be someone I’m not and mouth imbecilities?”
Although spoken by Doc Martin, I could just imagine Piers saying these same words. They seem to fit him perfectly.
Miss Linnet Thynne has more going for her than just beauty. She’s intelligent, strong-willed and witty and is more than a match for Piers even at his most bad-tempered.
The pacing of their romance was just perfect and they have great chemistry. I really love their amusing verbal exchanges and the sensuous ‘swimming lessons’ in the rock pool. What a teasing minx Linnet is in the guardroom love scene and the unusual conversation is certainly different, lending the scene a slightly erotic feel. I like how Ms James turns the traditional fairy tale on its head in the final chapters.
The secondary characters add depth to the story and my favourite has to be Prufrock (love the name), Piers’s butler. Their conversations are hilarious.
”Your father has written,“ Prufrock told him. “I took the liberty of putting the letter on your desk.”
“Took the liberty of steaming it open, more like,” Piers said. “What does he have to say?”
“He expresses some interest in your marital future,” Prufrock said cheerfully. “It seems the last missive you sent him, the one listing all your demands for a spouse, did not dissuade him. Rather surprising, I must say.”
“The one that called him an idiot?” “Did you read that one too, you pestilent polecat?”
“You’re quite poetical today,” Prufrock observed. “All that alliteration in the service of mopsies and mollishers, and now for your lowly butler. I’m honoured, I assure you.”
Living in Wales, I loved the unusual setting for the story and this is how I imagined Piers’s Welsh castle :
VERDICT : A PURE DELIGHT FROM BEGINNING TO END, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
[Read May 2012]
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