The Lost Lilacs of Latimer House

rating
(No Series)
  Gothic


Lonely and restless Charleston belle, Faith Richards, waited out the War Between the States, protected by elderly relatives in the Bahamas. Handsome Hunter Latimer offered her a post as governess on Dark Thunder Island, a place not for the faint-hearted. Lightning split the sky and revealed the source of her terror!



This is my second Gothic read of the year, and fortunately much better than the first I tried out. This is a new author to me, and her writing style was easy to fall into. Not melodramatic, easy to follow, fits well with the tone of the Gothic genre, and written through one POV.

It's a serious story but there were delightful small bits of humor, such as this one:


"Even as I repeated my reason, I had a strong suspicion neither man was going to believe me. Again I wished for a maidenly swoon to escape their burning glares; unfortunately, the fresh morning breeze was making me physically better, not worse."

The heroine was easy to enjoy - realistic, independent for the times, rebellious, sweet, curious. The romance was overdone sometimes and made the story as its backdrop, but the mystery itself was clever. There weren't many clues or much suspense until the end, but the story had a war happening at the same time which introduced multiple levels of human drama and experiences. Her already being betrothed and her fiance missing isn't something tried everyday for romance type tales. There was enough of a variety of main players to keep it interesting, and when the story announced the island had a pirate curse, of course I was interested. A pirate curse? How awesome.

The major flaw lay with the editing. It improved as the book went on, but the first chapter was particularly painful editing wise. 

Overall a worthy read if you're itching for a gothic. It carries the traits most of them do but doesn't have as many of the downsides (too much melodrama, for example, is lacking for a change - yay.)

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