Saturday, November 6, 2010

Review: This Is All I Ask

This Is All I AskBook Blurb:
A courageous border lord who has lost everything he has ever cared about finds new meaning in his life when he encounters a young woman willing to sacrifice it all to find love. Original.


Any book that begins with a trio of witches, two of whom are bickering over a burned love potion and the other looking into the future holds great promise for an excellent read and this book does not disappoint.  Gillian of Warewick's father abuses her horribly, physically and emotionally and sells her in marriage, to her horror, to the Dragon of Blackmour, a man widely rumored to be a warlock who sprouts demon horns and practices his dark arts in his keep tower in the middle of the night.

Christopher of Blackmour is a knight retired from the tournaments but not retired from honor and he gave his word to Gillian's brother he would protect her in the event of the brother's death. He plans to wed Gillian, giving her his name and eventually an heir,but no real intimacy as his first marriage was a disaster. 

Gillian and Christopher must learn to trust each other in spite of the adverse situations each has encountered in the past, often with a little nudge from supporting characters. The supporting characters, Jason of Artane, Colin of Berkhamshire and the trio of witches: Nemain, Magda and Berengaria, are every bit as wonderfully well-crafted as the main characters and add a great bit of depth to the story. One of my favorite scenes is when Gillian visits the witches to get a courage and beauty potion because she knows Christopher would only grow to love someone as courageous as he is. 

Watching Gillian grow to womanhood is a delight, as is watching Christopher learn to trust not only her but himself as well. The story is not action-driven, but rather character-driven, so if you want a fast-paced novel, this might not be for you. The first time I read this book, when I read the back I thought "That's probably going to be a boring book but I like the author's other books, so I'll go ahead and read it." I was VERY glad I did because it's such a beautiful story. Funny at times, heart-rending at others, this book sticks with you long after you turn the last page. 

Sensuality: kissing and a few scenes of "fade to black" sex (I let my daughter read it at 13) 

Rating: 5 stars

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