Author: Courtney Milan
Redonk Nutshell: Undercover “operative” falls for the enemy
Official Synopsis: He was her bitterest enemy…Ash Turner has waited a lifetime to seek revenge on the man who ruined his family, and at last the time for justice has arrived. At Parford Manor, he intends to take his place as the rightful heir to the dukedom, and settle an old score with the current duke once and for all. But when he arrives, he finds himself drawn to a tempting beauty who has the power to undo all his dreams of vengeance. And her dearest love…Lady Margaret knows she should despise the man who’s stolen her fortune and her father’s legacy — the man she’s been ordered to spy on in the guise of a nurse. Yet the more she learns about the new duke, the less she can resist his smoldering appeal. Soon Margaret and Ash find themselves torn between old loyalties — and the tantalizing promise of passion…
This is the 2nd book I’ve read by Ms. Milan, and I was really looking forward to it b/c I enjoyed Trial by Desire. This is Milan’s latest release, and most of the feedback I had checked out was positive (Smexy Books’ review).
Here’s what sets Milan’s work apart from your typical romance – character development. She creates interesting men and women, and the characters’ decisions throughout the story are far from predictable. In fact, they act like…get ready for it…NORMAL PEOPLE. *gasp!* I love readin me a good ole romance novel, but lots of times I find myself watching the characters and subconsciously distancing myself from their story, if only because on some level I’m unable to relate to it. Don’t get me wrong – that’s not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, that’s why we read, right? Because it’s an escape. With Milan, her characters are raw, emotional, and ever-evolving human beings that make mistakes and do and say things that strike me as being realistically, well, realistic.
In Unveiled, Lady Margaret has to deal with a multitude of emotions – anger, resentment, anguish, and, ultimately love. Ash Turner has his own bag of emotions, but he’s a hero who knows exactly who he is and is at a point in his life where he has accepted that. Margaret’s life, on the other hand, is tossing and turning up in the air and all because of Ash Turner. And in more ways than one. What’s refreshing about their relationship, though, is Ash helps Margaret to dig herself out of her darkness.
All that said, (and I know you’re going to smack me for this) I had a hard time getting into Unveiled. I had to put it aside a few times and walk away from it. Not for lack of a story – no, that was there. For me personally I was unable to fall into the story. Looking back, I find myself respecting Ash’s decisions as well as Margaret’s, and I find Milan’s decisions with her story intriguing. Kind of like how after watching a movie that was…entertaining, but I didn’t really like it. Does that make sense? Glad I went but won’t be seeing it again…? Ya’ know?
What I loved about this book: Courtney Milan is a wonderful story teller – her characters are far from flat and predictable.
What I didn’t like: I wasn’t as engaged in this story