Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Duet by Eden Winters
Author: Eden Winters
Buy at Dreamspinner
Buy at All Romance eBooks
Cover Artist: Anne Cain
Genre: Historical, paranormal, contemporary
Length: 200 pages
Formats: epub, mobi, pdf, html/zip, paperback
A conqueror’s decree can’t separate Aillil Callaghan from his Scottish heritage. He wears his clan’s forbidden plaid with pride, awaiting the day he becomes Laird, restores his family’s name, and fights to free Scotland from English tyranny. An Englishman in his home? Abomination! Yet the tutor his father engaged for Aillil’s younger brothers may have something to teach the Callaghan heir as well.
Violinist and scholar Malcolm Byerly fled Kent in fear, seeking nothing more than a quiet post, eager minds to teach, and for no one to learn his secrets. He didn’t count on his charges’ English-hating barbarian of an older brother, or on red-and-green tartan concealing a kindred soul. A shared love of music breaks down the barriers between two worlds.
Aillil’s father threatens their love, but a far more dangerous enemy tears them apart. They vanish into legend.
Two centuries later, concert violinist Billy Byerly arrives at Castle Callaghan—and feels strangely at home. Legends speak of a Lost Laird who haunts the fortress in wait of his lover’s return. Billy doesn’t believe in legends, ghosts, or love that outlasts life.
But the Lost Laird knows his own.
It’s not often that I like a book well enough to track it down and review it again after it’s been republished, but anyone who hangs around here already knows Eden Winters is an autobuy for me. This one’s been hanging fire because of my health issues (sorry about that) but it’s a comfort read, and if I couldn’t write about it, I could at least reread and feel better.
It’s even better this time around. Eden’s grown as a writer and has put a new loving sheen on what was already a great story. Not that I sat down to pick at what’s different this time, that would spoil the fun, but it’s smoother over all, more polished. For those who’ve never read it any other way, it will go down like the smoothest aged Scotch whiskey—a smoky, peaty mouthful.
This book doesn’t fit genre easily. The historical beginning is a heartbreaker, as Aillil and Malcolm find a love that isn’t welcome in their century, and even more heartbreaking when Aillil finds a way to transcend time. These characters have to claw their way to even be in the same place at the same time (and same time has an additional meaning here.)
They have a lot to overcome in the contemporary section as well, not just issues of "are we suited for each other?" Really, how do you cope with someone who has a headful of memories and hopes that you are just now finding out about, and you don’t quite believe in him anyway? And how do you keep from throwing a couple centuries’ worth of want at a guy who thinks he’s hallucinating?
This couple has some unusual challenges to overcome, but they do, and they probably deserve their HEA six times as much as most, for all they’ve gone through. Definitely one of my go-to books when I need hope. 5 marbles