A digital copy of this book was provided to me in exchange for an honest review.
This is another lovely historical romance from Killarney Sheffield. This one takes us through the times of the 1792 revolution and the after-math of it. Marie Antoinette, the unfortunate Queen of France at that time, is forced to escape the palace through a secret passageway, during a threat of sabotage from the local rebels during the revolutionary political upheaval. Pregnant with the loathsome's King's child, she flees with her maid, only to be caught and imprisoned. To make matters worse, she finds herself being called loony, whenever she tries explaining she is indeed Marie Antoinette. Reagan Reever, nicknamed The Stone, is a ruthless convict in the same prison camp who takes her into his care to win a wager with his friends. A highly unlikely friendship forms between the two as they realise they need each other's help and support. The rest of the book answers these questions and more: Does Marie succeed in convinving Reagan that she used to be the cursed Queen? Will she get ever get back the treasures she tried to hide and send away, when she fled? Does Reagan manage to keep his heart in check and not fall for a decidedly insane woman?
I couldn't help but smile at Marie's indignant attempts to convince people she was the Queen. Her annoyance at being mocked for stating the truth is painfully amusing. She wins the reader's heart over, with her elegant and royal upbringing clashing with the brutalities she is made to endure. Reagan's character is remarkable - tough at the exterior, but not as venemous inside, as makes himself appear to be. Sheffield does a great job laying these two characters out, that one can't help but wish there was more to read to understand the depth behing Reagan's characters - What was his mindset when he underwent unmentionable torture at the hands of his stepfather? Why did he choose to wear the tough armour, instead of becoming a scared rabbit himself? Why did he stuff Marie's clothes as well into his bag when he attempts to escape, but deny having had any intentions of taking her along? Although all of these instances prove he is softer inside than he would want others to believe, it would have been delightful to read more about his mind through Sheffield's writing. The faithful Adele is adorable and the vile brother is loathsome, just the way they should - which goes on to show how convincing Sheffield's charcterisation is. I would definitely recommend this to lovers of historical romance books.
My rating for this book: 5 stars