Skillful story weaving insures that readers will only know the answers to the book's questions at the end.

READ REVIEW

THE LADY OF SECRETS

A practitioner of white magic becomes embroiled, against her will, in the Guy Fawkes conspiracy.           

In this latest of Carroll’s popular series featuring witches, good and evil, of late-Renaissance Europe, the protagonist is Meg Wolfe, the recently anointed Lady of Faire Isle. Although her mother, the late Cassandra, leader of the sinister Silver Rose coven, had tried to groom Meg as her successor sorceress, Meg opted for the Lady’s mostly benign duties, leading an isolated group of “cunning women,” healing with herbs, and undoing spells cast by bad witches. When she’s summoned to Brittany to investigate a demonic possession, she is enlisted by an English knight, Sir Patrick Graham, to lift a curse plaguing King James. Once in London, escorted by Patrick and his friend, the dissolute but charming physician Armagil Blackwood, Meg regrets leaving the serenity of Faire Isle. Dreams and other clues reveal to her that Sir Patrick may actually be Robert Brody, whose twin sister was burned at the stake for witchcraft years before, along with an old crone, Tamsin, who had believed the condemned duo would be pardoned by James. When James demurred, Tamsin cursed him and the Stuart line from the pyre. Could Patrick be using Meg to win the king’s confidence while plotting treasonous vengeance? Outwardly loutish but secretly sexy Armagil tries to warn her, but when he touches a poisoned Silver Rose found in the garden of her lodgings, she is distracted by the need to save his life then consummate their mutual attraction. When Patrick catches them together, he’s incensed, but his accusations hint at fears Meg already harbors. What if Cassandra isn’t dead after all? What if her coven has returned, bent on declaring Meg their all-powerful queen, Megaera? What if Guido (Guy) Fawkes’ gunpowder goes stale before he can blow up Parliament?

Skillful story weaving insures that readers will only know the answers to the book's questions at the end.

Pub Date: Dec. 11, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-345-50295-7

Page Count: 448

Publisher: Ballantine

Review Posted Online: Sept. 16, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2012

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

  • Kirkus Reviews'
    Best Books Of 2019

  • IndieBound Bestseller

RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE

The much-loved royal romance genre gets a fun and refreshing update in McQuiston’s debut.

Alex Claremont-Diaz, son of the American President Ellen Claremont, knows one thing for sure: He hates Henry, the British prince to whom he is always compared. He lives for their verbal sparring matches, but when one of their fights at a royal wedding goes a bit too far, they end up falling into a wedding cake and making tabloid headlines. An international scandal could ruin Alex’s mother’s chances for re-election, so it’s time for damage control. The plan? Alex and Henry must pretend to be best friends, giving the tabloids pictures of their bromance and neutralizing the threat to Ellen's presidency. But after a few photo ops with Henry, Alex starts to realize that the passionate anger he feels toward him might be a cover for regular old passion. There are, naturally, a million roadblocks between their first kiss and their happily-ever-after—how can American political royalty and actual British royalty ever be together? How can they navigate being open about their sexualities (Alex is bisexual; Henry is gay) in their very public and very scrutinized roles? Alex and Henry must decide if they’ll risk their futures, their families, and their careers to take a chance on happiness. Although the story’s premise might be a fantasy—it takes place in a world in which a divorced-mom Texan Democrat won the 2016 election—the emotions are all real. The love affair between Alex and Henry is intense and romantic, made all the more so by the inclusion of their poetic emails that manage to be both funny and steamy. McQuiston’s strength is in dialogue; her characters speak in hilarious rapid-fire bursts with plenty of “likes,” “ums,” creative punctuation, and pop-culture references, sounding like smarter, funnier versions of real people. Although Alex and Henry’s relationship is the heart of the story, their friends and family members are all rich, well-drawn characters, and their respective worlds feel both realistic and larger-than-life.

A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

Pub Date: June 4, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-250-31677-6

Page Count: 432

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Review Posted Online: March 4, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

Did you like this book?

On the day her fiance came out and left her at the altar, Faith escaped to the West Coast, where she’s had a thriving...

THE BEST MAN

When Faith Holland was abandoned at the altar three years ago, she left her hometown for San Francisco to regroup; coming home to Manningsport, she’ll have to confront her past and Levi Cooper, the disturbingly handsome chief of police she blames for ruining her life.

On the day her fiance came out and left her at the altar, Faith escaped to the West Coast, where she’s had a thriving professional life and a comical romantic life. Summoned home for a few months to work the harvest at her family’s winery and help with some crisis management, Faith realizes that some things in her small town will never change—for the good or the bad—but she knows the time has come to establish a new reality with her ex, her family and maybe even Levi Cooper, the best man who forced Jeremy to be honest with her and himself on their wedding day. It’s so much easier to blame and despise him; if she lets down her guard, she might have to deal with their short but profound shared past and her own guilt and secrets from a long-ago tragedy that has haunted her for most of her life. Higgins’ newest heart-tugging romantic comedy juggles a spectrum of emotionally powerful elements, including the death of a mother, the abandonment of a father and a sigh-worthy high school romance gone awry. With her typical engaging voice, compelling storytelling and amusing dialogue, Higgins keeps the audience flipping through pages as quickly as possible, but it is her spot-on ability to make her characters at once funny, authentic and vulnerable—vulnerable to the point of breaking, so they can heal, stronger and better and more able to love—that is her true genius and guarantees most romance fans will both laugh out loud and get teary, sometimes at the same time. Another sweet, touching must-read for Higgins fans and anyone who enjoys a perfect combination of humor and romance.

Pub Date: Feb. 26, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-373-77792-1

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Harlequin

Review Posted Online: Dec. 24, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2013

Did you like this book?

more