Friday, February 21, 2014

Regency Version of 'Dynasty' -The Maid of Milan's first review

Goodness, but it's nerve-wracking waiting for the very first review of one's new book to come out in print.

And below, here it is and I couldn't be more thrilled. I love Robyn's review and how she describes The Maid of Milan as a 'Regency version of Dynasty'.

I did so much rewriting in the final edits that it's nothing like my critique partners and family and anyone else who'd ever read it in draft form would remember. I'd been fired up by some of the thoughts of the Choc Lit 'Tasting Panel' which my fantastic editor, Rachel Skinner, had sent off to me. There were about six pages of 'thoughts' and issues, I suppose you could call them.

First off was that my heroine, Adelaide, needed to be made more sympathetic. That happens in just about every one of my stories. Redemption themes feature in most of my books so in order for my main character to be redeemed they need to start off in a less than flattering light. And I know I load the brush too thickly so that it takes a few 'goes' at chipping away at the too-thick layer of prickliness, or arrogance, so that hopefully, even if my reader doesn't exactly like my heroine straight away, they understand why she is this way - and love her by the end. That's always the plan, anyway.

So, without further ado, here's Robyn's review.

And now it's back to writing my 1960's illegal diamond buying/medicine murder romance set in the African mountain kingdom of Lesotho where I spent my early years.

's review
Feb 19, 14

Read in February, 2014

I have to be honest, when I got this book I thought it was going to be another fluffy Regency bodice ripper romance with some rake in mole skin trousers. Was I wrong! This book is nothing like you would expect. The only way I can describe it, is as a Regency version of Dynasty. It has everything, secrets, lies, blackmail, love triangles, death, drug addiction, jealousy, affairs, scandals, oh and some bodice ripping too- the only thing it is missing is Joan Collins. However, I think Mrs. Henley, Adelaide's mother runs a close second.
Mrs. Henley forces Adelaide to go along with the story that she created in order to save Adelaide, but all it does is eats her away from the inside. She is later put in a position that the only way to get out of one lie is to tell more.
No one is who they seem in this book, except for Tristan. Tristan is truly honourable man with a moral compass who repeatedly saves Adelaide.
Adelaide's only real crime is being young and in love and obeying her mother. Time after time, her loyalty to her mother and her husband are tested. In the end, you learn who the true villain is and why.
The book has a genteel opulence of Anthony Trollope's The Palliser's but underneath the waving fans it is all gritty intrigue.
This is the first book I read by Beverley Eikli and I can say I am now a fan.
The Maid of Milan gripped me from the start and kept me there. I read it in a day, I just couldn't put it down. I highly recommend this unique book.

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