March 16, 2015
“Well, I can't forget this evening
Or your face as you were leaving” - Harry Nilsson
I Loved a Rogue, by Katharine Ashe, is the final book in the Prince Catcher's series featuring
the Caulfield sisters. This is the one where there is a prophecy about finding a prince who knows something about the magical ruby ring the sisters wear around their neck. They've been passing that ring from story to story looking for the prince who is "ring-wise." There are a lot of story-lines in this book, a lot of twists and turns and numerous loose ends. Some of those loose ends are tied and some aren’t. I found the mystery surrounding the parentage of the sisters intriguing and I enjoyed all the different paths I was led down. There were so many things going on that the romance part of the book got lost in the shuffle.
Yes, I found the romance between Eleanor and Taliesin weak and toward the end of the book I grew tired of Taliesin's repetitious walk awaysssss. I started to wonder why Eleanor continued to hold out for this guy - one moment he's encouraging her to love him and the next moment he's walking out that door. This walking-away-I'm-not-good-enough-routine was quite annoying.
Not only was the hero exasperating but a number of the secondary characters were also grating. Robin Prince, a maybe future hero except for the fact that he kept things from the heroine - important things - which would have helped her in her search for her birth parents. He also wasn't above blackmailing while at the same time professing his love. Then there is his irritating younger sister who tries to trick Taliesin into marriage. However, this plot line seems to have just sort of faded into the margins. Taliesin said he wouldn't marry her and everyone accepted that and the story just moved on. Martin Caulfield, the sister’s legal father, in the beginning of the book seems to be a loving parent. However, it is revealed later on in the story that he knows some of the secrets of their parentage and he hasn't shared it with them. The evil relatives. Eleanor's evil aunts, uncles and cousins make an appearance, are nasty to her, lock her up and drug her. Then there is a sentence or so dedicated to them getting their just deserts.
Let's not forget the prophecy - I think it was wrapped up. I believe I know who the "prince" was, but I wasn't clear. And, we find out about the ring, but that was just sort of ho-hum. Overall, the suspense and all the twists and turns were superb. "These boots were made for walking" guy Taliesin walked out one tooooo many times for me. There were too many things left hanging and villains who simply disappeared from the pages. Maybe if the story had been simpler it would have worked better for me. As it was, I liked the paths we are led down regarding the sister's parentage. However, the romance was weak and the secondary characters for the most part were like a clamorous ringing in my ears.
Time/Place: Regency England