I’m not reading the Sherry Thomas story…yet. But only because it looks to be part of a series, and from the reviews I’ve seen, I won’t know what’s going on. Once I’ve read the book before this, I’ll come back to the ST story.
One Starlit Night by Carolyn Jewel-3 flames
The actual romance was beautiful and sweet, but I felt it ended a bit too abruptly. For a lovers reunited theme, I wanted more of them. I wanted more time dealing with their trauma, I wanted more of them together, and I wanted so much less page time for Eleanor.
Eleanor is Portia’s sister-in-law. Most of the changes she makes around the Grange are cosmetic, repainting a room, bringing in artwork from one room to a different room, digging up all the crocuses. Things of that nature. But what bothered me was how she got away with doing everything because no one wanted her feelings to be hurt.
I read another review where it put a different perspective on Eleanor (that she just wants bigger and better things for Portia-and she does, but it’s also for her husband Magnus), and I still just can’t get into her. I seem to be the only person who even mentions this, but I couldn’t stand her. I found her to be manipulative and over-bearing..
She wants Portia to have a Season in London. Portia has no desire to go to London, at all. She has a nice gentleman who will marry her, red hair, tarnished past and all. Yet Eleanor bats her baby blues and summons some tears and no one will tell her no. It’s very childish and manipulative.
As you can see, I haven’t spent much time on Portia and Crispin-that’s because way too many pages were dedicated to Eleanor.
I think it had the potential to be a 4 star story, even with Eleanor, but it was said every other paragraph that Eleanor gave that puppy look, and her eyes filled with tears. It drove me so crazy that I couldn’t enjoy the beautiful story.
What Happened at Midnight by Courtney Milan-4.5 flames
I really love how the 2 stories are tied together. From the slightest detail of a missing earring in Carolyn Jewel’s story, to the rowan tree still there, I love the concept of all 3 stories intertwining.
This story begins at the precise moment that Mary’s father’s business partners are ransacking her house looking for the money he embezzled. Mary is in the process of running away when one of the partners decides to beat the information out of her. Her fiancé John steps in, but he doesn’t stop her from leaving him. You see, he was one of her father’s business partners too.
Mary’s whole life changed from that moment on. She faces hardships that she should never have had to face. And she winds up in an unusual position. She is a lady’s companion, but the husband is over-protective of the two women.
When John ends up near the Grange 18 months later, everything is thrown into upheaval. And for the better.
I love Courtney Milan’s writing. The amount of emotion she is always able to evoke amazes me. The only thing I really didn’t like, is that once John admitted something to Mary, she was upset, but she took it in stride. Sometimes that works, sometimes it doesn’t. I wanted more from her. Her reaction was just too easy for my taste.
This was a wonderful story, though and I love who Mary became. I also love that John appreciated who she became. Milan writes such wonderful heroes.
I didn’t read this one, but I will. I just want to read the book before it first.