Source: Audiobook Jukebox/Author – I received this in exchange for an honest review.
Series: The Jewels of Kinfairlie #1
Narrator: Deborah A. Cooke
Edition: Audiobook, 9 Hours and 11 Minutes
Genre: Historical Romance
Purchase: Amazon / Audible / Barnes & Noble *
*I receive a small monetary kickback from Amazon purchases
Rating: 4/5 Stars
More cherished than gold are the Jewels of Kinfairlie, and only the worthiest may fight for their love…The Laird of Kinfairlie has unmarried sisters, each a gem in her own right. And he has no choice but to see them all wed in haste.
Lady Madeline’s heart is not for sale…especially not to a notorious outlaw like Rhys FitzHenry. Yet Madeline’s hand has been sold, to none other than this battle-weary warrior with a price on his head. A more dutiful maiden might cede to the Laird’s command and meekly accept her fate, but Madeline has never been obedient. She decides to run away, though she never dreams that Rhys will pursue her. She does not expect this taciturn man to woo her with fanciful stories, much less that each of his enthralling tales will reveal a scar upon his shielded soul. She never imagines that a man like Rhys could imperil her own heart while revealing so little of his own feelings. When Rhys’s past threatens his future, Madeline takes a leap of faith. She dares to believe him innocent–and risks her own life to pursue a passion more priceless than the rarest gem.
I originally heard of this series from Kimba over at the Caffeinated Reader, who really enjoyed several of Claire’s books. I haven’t read a true medieval romance and I really needed something light and fun, and that’s exactly what I found.
The Beauty Bride introduces us to Madeline, a woman of high standing who has yet to marry much to her older brother’s chagrin. She’s willful and intelligent, and believes her heart to belong to one man…a man who very well may be dead. I loved Madeline. She has a fiery personality and isn’t one to run from opposition, even when their armed or twice her size. She challenges things that don’t make sense to her and anyone who irks is sure to receive at least one small verbal barb. Her growth both before the book begins and as it proceeds is a wonderful one, and I loved getting to see her discover just how much a heart can change over time…and how one’s reputation can mean bunk when faced with reality. Rhys (pronounced RE-ease) was a maddening yet lovable counterpart. He had so many secrets and stories he didn’t want to tell, and it was a treat to see Madeline really work her way through the cracks in his defenses. To make matters better they didn’t just have the problem of a “forced” marriage, instead they had to navigate learning about both themselves and one another, outside interference, and doubts that had plagued them both since the first pages.
Delacriox’s writing is really well done and has a sense of ease about it, that I didn’t expect from novel set in medieval times. I learned quite a few new words and it sent me on quite a few little google trips to see if the history matched up nicely, it seems to. She painted the island under the English throne wonderfully, and I think it paired beautifully with Deborah A. Cooke’s narration. Her voice was clear and really brought out the personality in all of the characters. I loved all the different accents and voices she used, and it definitely made it easy to tell who was talking without being told. If life hadn’t gotten in the way I would have blazed through this audiobook in a matter of a few days.
Overall I enjoyed this addicting little tale and I have already added the rest of the series to my TBR! I can’t wait to see how this series continues and to get to know the adorable Kinfairlie family even more.