Saturday, December 24, 2005
My Lord Beast by Mary Lennox
I'm always going to pick up a romance with the Beauty and the Beast theme so this was a no-brainer for me. When I was a child it was my favorite fairy tale and from Jane Eyre on, I continue to enjoy variations on that theme.
Aubrey Drelincourte, Earl of Breme, has been accused of killing his first wife while they were in India. Before being found with the incriminating gun, he was mauled by a tiger which has left him disfigured. His cousin, the wicked heir, is trying to get him convicted of the murder so he can take over Breme. So brilliant Aubrey decides he must wed quickly and get an heir started to outfox wicked cousin Rupert. That part seemed a little weird, but the rest of the story was gripping and emotionally satisfying.
Lillias Merritt is trying very hard to stay out of the lecherous clutches of a local farmer when she runs to Breme for help. She helps nurse him back to health and they develop a love/hate relationship. She's spunky, bright and musically talented and doesn't think she's at all attractive. She's convinced Aubrey is innocent and will do anything to help him prove it, including getting herself into jeopardy.
I got this at the library on Friday afternoon and finished it Saturday morning. I really enjoyed the on again/off again relationship between Aubrey and Lillias and the story did have some odd twists in the journey which kept me reading.
Loved the secondary characters - they are well drawn and sympathetic, especially Ram Dass and Caroline. She's currently working on their story but since MLB was just published in May, 2005, it may be a while before it comes out. I'm looking forward to it; I really like Mary Lennox's storytelling style.