Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me.
(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)
While her family in England has always thought she died at sea as a toddler, Sunny has been in Arabia, being raised as a daughter of the emir in Darhabar. When the emir eventually arranges for an adolescent Sunny to return to England, young Captain Brandon Hawkesbury takes her into his charge. He begins to prepare her for a new life as an English lady in The Hawk and the Jewel, a novel by author Lori Wick.
Yes, I’m a Lori Wick fan. Most (or all) of the books I’ve read and finished by her, I’ve read more than once. This is a special author for me in that I knowingly abide or wink at some aspects of her stories that I don’t go for with other authors. There’s just something about several of her books that sticks with me and draws me back.
Upon picking up this novel, I was pretty sure it’d be rather fairytale-like and perhaps not the truest historical portrayal of England’s Victorian period. I may’ve been right about that. Still, I guess I was expecting something more to this plot than what’s there, in the first half.
Not much apart from Sunny’s ponderings on God interested me. There’s much ado about Sunny’s looks, her clothes, and her admirers. It seems I was expected to feel something right away for her English family members, since they’re emotional about having her back after all these years. But tearful reunions and such don’t mean much to me when I don’t know the characters, and I haven’t grown to care about them enough to keep pushing through the second half, as this novel isn’t exactly a short one.
I was tempted to skip ahead just to see how the story generally resolves, but that’s not my style. I do plan on continuing the Kensington Chronicles, though, since some coming plot points have intrigued me. And I’ll revisit this first novel if I later suspect I missed something in it that’s crucial to the series.
Here’s my review of the next book in the Kensington Chronicles, Wings of the Morning.