The beginning was decent, but towards the middle it began to falter and get In my tipsy state, the book Instagram Twitter Facebook Amazon Pinterest Last week, I was out drinking with friends and then took public transportation home DrinkResponsibly. Although does that stop him from watching his uncle and Blaze do the nasty? He has to blackmail her into it by threatening to take her children away from her. Bertrice Small always used to come up with these ridiculous plots.
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Her office is amazing, with original cover art on the walls and sketches that went on to become book covers framed all over the place. Her reference book collection would make a historical romance author shiver. I stayed up until pm am reading it, unable to put it down. Blaze Wyndham is old skool romance with sweeping plot and details that go beyond mere descriptions, and a cast of characters that grows but never becomes too big.
Lark and Linette, and Gavin and Glenna are twins — and poor Gavin is the only boy. Sir Robert, when the story opens, is despairing how he will ever dower all those girls when the estate and his family are beyond broke. They have nothing but poverty, and no connections to recommend them to advantageous marriages.
The book is off to a bleak start when — surprise! Sir Robert and Lady Rosemary are completely struck dumb by this offer, but Lord Wyndham is serious: he wants a young healthy wife who can help him secure heirs for his estates, particularly since a run of terrible events has convinced his villagers and tenants that Langford is cursed.
Edmund does have an heir in his nephew, Anthony, who is four years his junior, but he wants children of his own. Of course the two poleaxed parents select their oldest daughter, Blaze, who is almost 15 at the start of the story. Blaze and her sisters are also, of course, uncommonly beautiful and could make very successful marriages without that pesky poverty thing. The initial story can be very slow going. The account of her first five years at RiversEdge, the Langford estate, is heavy with the detail involved in running the house, but even though there are pages and pages of description Christmas alone is about six or seven pages it never feels too heavy, even though I am generally instantly alerted to too much infodumpery.
Because the detail is so rich and intricate, and because the characters are the ones acting out the holiday rituals, what could be boring and overly informative remained fascinating to me. He agrees — even though Anthony mocks him for it — and they and the reader enjoy a slow, sweet courtship until they are hot and bothered for one another. And then, it is on, like purple Donkey Kong. There is some hot, descriptive old skool sex up in here, up in here.
When Tony inherits the Earldom, as Blaze has only had one daughter at that time, Blaze leaves to visit her family. Blaze catches the eye of King Henry, and becomes his mistress. Once that part of the novel gets started, it is just impossible for me to put it down.
The story and the plot overshadow Blaze herself, who tends to be exceptionally perfect in the way that only an old-skool heroine can be. That vividness and richness is one of the reasons I love this book. That and the characters who, even as they grow in number, remain for the most part distinct from one another.
This was a perfect book to kick off my examination of my old-skool favorites, because it has everything I loved about old-skool romance, without so much of the rapey alpha heroes. It can be slow in parts, but skipping the descriptions means the story itself can be more difficult to picture.
Blaze Wyndham by Bertrice Small
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