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Saturday, May 29, 2010

Review: Uncertain Magic by Laura Kinsale

Uncertain Magic by Laura Kinsale
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genre: Romance
Paperback 384 pages
Book Source: the publisher, Sourcebooks
My Rating: 85 (Solid B)

Rumors of ruined maidens, coldblooded duels, swindles, and murder swirl around the impoverished 'Devil Earl.' But Faelan Savigar hides an even darker secret.

Roderica Delamore longs for a normal life but fears she'll end up mad or suicidal like the forebears from whom she inherited her "gift" of sensing others thoughts and emotions. As the two find their way to each other against all odds, Roddy's growing love for Faelen may end up saving him or destroying her… A breathtaking historical romance filled with poignancy, darkness, love, and an unexpected twist of Gaelic magic…

My Thoughts:

Nine-teen year old Roddy and 35-ish Faelan are quite the pair.  He has the delvish looks of dark hair and blue eye, while Roddy resembles a fairy with her golden wispy hair, slight form, and odd all seeing gray eyes.  Roddy has a telepathic gift, so when she has a chance meeting with Faelan, the Devil Earl, and she can't read his mind, she sets her marriage hopes on him. Never mind his devilish reputation, she just knows he is her only hope for a good and normal life. Plus there is just something about her that makes her breathe quicken. Faelan stirs up emotions in Roddy she never knew she had.

The pair marry quickly and set for his estate of Iveragh, in a remote corner of Ireland. Need I say more? Ireland with its magical history and eartheal beauty is the perfect setting for these two. Roddy and Faelan fall deeper in love with each other during the course of the tale, despite each harboring a secret from the other. There is some mystery and a wee bit of intrigue included as well. And lets not forget, the passionate love scenes as well.

This story has all of the elements I like in a story, however I had a few issues. First, Roddy was initially presented as a headstrong, risky girl. She seemed strong and determined. However, as the story continued, Roddy changed into a shy, sometimes petulant child. I felt like this was not the girl that I started with in the story. My second issue may in fact be influencing how I view Roddy. Faelan calls Roddy his "little girl" quite often. She was much younger and immature than him, I get it. However, the "little girl" started to creep me out, especially when he would say it and then passionately kiss her. I'm not a prude, but come on.

My last issue was Faelan's secret and the magical element of the story. I kept waiting to find out what this big secret was, and when I did I thought it was meh. The book was a originally published in 1987, so maybe it had a bigger impact back then. Today you could trip over the number of books with magical elements in them. It has become commonplace.

I think these issues are minor because they certainly didn't stop me from finishing the book.  If anything I am curious to read Kinsale's other works. 

Laura Kinsale's website

My Rating:  85/100  A solid B because as ling as I skipped over those two words I was cool.  It was a decent story, if a little dated.

2010 Challenges Met: 100+, Historical Fiction, Reading Romance

Thanks to Danielle from Sourcebooks for my review copy.


Kaye said...

I was disappointed in this one. I liked Kinsale's Lessons in French much better. I thought the romance in UM was too repetitive and like you say the magic, secrets . . . meh!
Have a great weekend!

Staci said...

I've never read this author but sometimes when I'm browsing I may come across this one and remember your review and bring it home!

Blodeuedd said...

So true, magic is everywhere now, but sounds ok :)

Irene said...

I've not read this author.

Sassy Brit @ said...

Hi there!

I've not read this author, but sounds good to me! Thanks!


The Bookworm said...

This sounds good, I do like historical romance.
The 'little girl' nickname might creep me out too though.
Great review.

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