Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Mally - Sandra Heath

Mally came to her girlhood castle home in Wales to discover what should become of her as a woman.

With her was Sir Christopher Carlyon. who begged her to be his wife and whose passion was devilishly hard to deny. Missing was her younger sister. Who had vanished with - of all disreputable types of gentlemen - an American.

And making her feel both all-too-comfortable and increasingly uneasy was her extraordinarily charming host. Richard Vallender. who claimed to be Christopher's most loyal friend even as he drew closer and closer to Mally.

The questions of the heart and the seductive lies of love- twin puzzles for a young woman who found that all that was once so safe and familiar was now so menacing and strange....
I am, slowly, getting to the bottom of the TBR pile and this time I found another Sandra Heath book. I have loved a couple of her books and been less sure of other. This one, unfortunately, falls in the second category.

Mally is a young widow, she has a beau in Sir Christopher Carlyon but she doesn't seem much interested in him. At the moment she is more worried with her younger sister who has disappeared and she fears she went away to marry someone her family wouldn't approve of.

My main problem is that I never felt I actually knew Mally and what I did know of her wasn't very interesting. I couldn't understand why she kept Carlyon around if she didn't want him; it seemed kinder than leading him on. I didn't feel like I really got to know Carlyon, by the way, but he seemed a lot more involved with her than she was with him.

Then the mystery did get me a bit, or lot actually, confused. First Mally's sister had run away to marry, then it seemed something darker was afoot.. When she meets Vallender she first believes he may be the villain who took her sister or at least know what happened to her and when they all find themselves at his castle she can't help but being attracted to him despite everything.

I suppose the idea is to introduce a bit of a gothic feel in the story - mysterious man, mysterious castle but maybe because I wasn't really invested in Mally as a character it didn't really work for me.

Grade: 2/5

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