Friday, September 26, 2014

Review: Upon Your Return by Marie Lavender

Fara Bellamont has been back in society for a year after leaving Cluny Abbey, where her uncle sent her long ago. When he chooses a suitor for her for marriage, she fears that she will be forced to marry a stranger and live a miserable life.

But, Fara finds herself thrust into an adventure of a lifetime when unforeseen circumstances cause her to place her trust in a strange man for protection. His intervention not only saves her, but puts her in an even more compromising position.

Grant Hill, a trading captain, is enchanted by the young heiress not only because of her beauty, but because she is hardly conventional. Underneath her ladylike exterior lies a tigress. Grant cannot help but offer his protection as she is in need and he is far from immune from her charms.

Fara just never bargained on the passion that she feels for Grant Hill. As events unfold, she must decide whether her desires and the dictates of her heart should trump the rules of society in this exciting tale
My Rating
 My Review  

Upon Your Return is a wonderfully written historical romance that a variety of readers will enjoy. The premise is quite fantastic in itself. A romantic hero that is also captain of his own ship? I can definitely jump onto that boat. The events of the story are smoothly intertwined, and make for a very interesting read. 

The characters of the novel are all very strong, and each are enjoyable in their own way. Fara may be unconventional in the sense that she is outspoken and fiery, which I absolutely loved but Lavender didn't go overboard as trying to sell just how different she was. There are ways for a female heroine to be strong without physical strength, and occasionally needing "saving" doesn't make one weak. Fara is proof of both these facts, and it's wonderful. She's strong, intelligent and passionate - but still has the convincing image of a lady. It's a wonderful blend.
Just as Fara was a fantastic female lead, Grant Hill is a complete showstopper. If he has one thing, it's personality, and it's a good one. He's smart, sexy, and courageous - and he really cares about Fara. Definitely swoon-worthy. Say what you want, but that's important for me in romances.
And although the romance between Fara and Grant is sweet and steamy and just really great, there is so much more to the novel than the two of them. There is danger, excitement, complex characters and emotional situations. It's more than a romance, but it has fantastic romance.
Although some parts read a bit slow, the overall pacing was fine. There are a few unanswered questions which make certain actions not totally clear and seeming no more than convenient, but not in abundance. (The only thing that really stuck out involved the motives of the first fiance, which is a pretty significant plot event.)
Nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the read and recommend it for fans of historical romance.

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