Saturday, January 22, 2011

ICY SNOW MUSINGS BOOK REVIEW

So excited again! Another good review! Check it out the Icy Snow Black Stone Reveiw! You can click on the link. I have posted the review below also.

Book Review
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Hannah Corbett is a willful young woman standing at a crossroads in history, the events leading up to the American Revolution. At a party given by her father, she meets Marcus Durham, a British soldier ostensibly come to Virginia with her uncle to persuade Hannah’s father to allow his daughter to return with them to Philadelphia to live with her maternal grandfather. They clash, of course, Hannah’s self-assertiveness and Marcus’ own brash personality colliding. Besides, Hannah already has a beau, Gabriel Witherspoon, whom she’s known all her life, though he’s been reluctant to speak to her father. What she doesn’t know is that, though he claims he loves her, Gabriel’s reluctance has to do with money rather than shyness and only when he learns Hannah will come into money of her own, does he ask that they be affianced.

Soon, however, Hannah has more things than Gabriel’s mercenary nature to worry about. Within a few months, she loses her father and younger brother, her stepmother, and her home to the British through her grandfather’s machinations. Because Gabriel and her older brother Jonathan are now recruited into the new Continental Army, she chooses to go to Philadelphia to live with her grandfather, determined to get revenge for her family, becoming a spy and help in the colonists’ struggle for freedom. Life with her grandfather isn’t easy, the danger of her chosen task notwithstanding, for Alexander Clay is a tyrant in his own home, prone to beat anyone disobeying him, including his own granddaughters. He is also a Tory, loyal to the Crown and the frequent visitors to his home soon offer Hannah the opportunities she needs to pass on information.

One of those visitors is Marcus Dunham, and before she realizes it, the young Englishman becomes the most important person in Hannah’s life. Younger son of a noble, and now one of His Majesty’s officers, he finds himself drawn to the girl he met in Virginia, and when Hannah comes under suspicion, he declares his love for her. Though it’s an impossible affair—Marcus is married and a loyal subject of the Crown—he’s determined to keep Hannah safe and out of danger, even if he ruins her reputation in doing so. Deserted by those people sworn to protect her and abandoned by Gabriel who’s been persuaded by those same people not to take her to safety, Hannah gives Marcus her love only for the time they may have together, never expecting more or less, but the danger she’s flirted with and the risks she continues to take eventually take their toll. Even when she learns she’s carrying his child, even when she’s arrested and sent to the Jersey, a prison ship anchored in the harbor, from which no one ever returns alive…

MY OPINION: A wonderful tale of two people brought together by a war which also keeps them apart. Though Marcus is introduced in the first chapter and then almost ignored until halfway through the book, once he’s brought back into the action, he becomes a strong character, a man torn between carrying out his duty to the Crown while trying to protect the woman he loves, and at the same time a man brought to his knees by the knowledge he can’t do what he wants because of his own loyalty. Because of his long absence from the story, one is almost fooled into thinking he isn’t an important character but then that belief changes, though the storyline never goes according to the usual and expected script. Marcus is married, his love for Hannah may be real but can never be honorable though he himself appears to be. His wife is conspicuously absent, having returned to England, and though Hannah mentions her often, he’s remarkably silent on that subject, which makes one wonder what went on there. Historical fact is blended with fiction in an exciting story, with real characters such as General Washington, Major Andre, and Benedict Arnold fighting alongside the fictional ones, integrating the beliefs and opinions of both sides in such a way that neither British nor colonists are heroes or villains but an ambivalent combination of both. Truly, the only real antagonists in the story are Hannah’s relatives who murder and steal for their own benefit, using the Revolution as the excuse.

Patriot Secrets is a stirring tale of war and valor as shown through the eyes of a young woman thrust into a situation she didn’t want; of the man who loves her in spite of their being on opposite sides of the firing line, and of the consequences of the actions these star-crossed lovers must accept in order to survive. These are characters the reader will want to know more about. Would it be too much to hope there’s a sequel in the wings?

RATING: Because of complaints, no more ratings will be given with reviews; Authors wishing such may get in touch with the reviewer by private e-mail

Patriot Secrets is available from Wild Child Publishing, http://www.wildchildpublishing.com/

This novel was supplied by the author and no remuneration was involved in the writing of this review.

Patriot Secrets by Jerri Hines

Friday, January 21, 2011

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