Welcome to red wine and books! Where an avid lover of all genres shares with you her opinion on some of the best (and not so great) stories she reads.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Review: Not Always a Saint (The Lost Lords #7) by Mary Jo Putney


Print Length: 352 pages
Publisher: Zebra (August 25, 2015)

From Goodreads.com: After the death of his sweetheart when he was at university, Daniel Herbert buried his grief in medical studies and his passion for healing. Viewed as a saint by those who know him, in his own mind, he never quite manages to live up to his own high standards. 

Most men would be thrilled to learn they've inherited a title and estate from a distant relative, but Daniel is appalled because the burden of wealth will interfere with his medical calling. Warily he accepts that he must enter society and seek a wife—a sensible woman who can oversee his properties, leaving him free to continue his work. He does not expect to become intoxicated by a woman called the Black Widow, who is as mysterious as she is shockingly beautiful…

Jessie Kelham’s looks have always been a curse. Now alone with a young daughter and a perilous secret, she is in need of protection. But dangerously attractive Daniel Herbert is not the kind of husband she has in mind. If he recognizes her, the demons of her past will surely erupt. Yet they cannot keep apart—and soon they are drawn into a union that may bring joy—or shattering danger…

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My Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Let me start off by saying that at first I felt that the characters were all detailed and presented in a way that you were instantly interested in them, and wanting to see how their stories would play out (even if they were presented as the villain in the story). The prologue of this story immediately captured my interest, as did the fact that the Hero was a doctor (and a skilled one at that) who was thrust into a title he did not want for reasons no one expected. Even the Heroine was interesting to a certain extent (although she made several choices throughout the story that I felt were not in line with the time period - for example dancing a ball approximately two weeks after her husband's death would not have been accepted by society).

However, the intricacies of the plot I felt left a lot to be desired. There was just too much going on and some of it left me wondering why it was even included when it didn't really add anything to the overall story. For example - we are told time and again that Jessie's father was not a nice man. We can understand her suffering at his hands as a child. So (to me) the author did not need to spend pages on Jessie going to her old village and seeking out her father just so we could see first hand how vile a man he was. It did nothing for the overall story. And then there were just other things (which I really can't go into detail about without giving away major spoilers) that just made no sense. And while it may have added a surprise twist or unexpected event in the author's mind, as a reader it just left me confused and wondering why it was added. Towards the end of the story, it started to feel a bit like overkill.

Even with that, I would read more from this author and I do plan on checking out the previous books in this series at some point. 

DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.

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Not Always a Saint (The Lost Lords #7) is available from Amazon.com

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