France, 1585. She is the youngest and most powerful of the “Sisters of Faire Isle,” women known far and wide for their extraordinary mystical abilities. Skilled in healing and able to forecast the future of those around her, Miri Cheney has returned to her ancestral home to take refuge from a land devastated by civil war–and to grieve for her family, driven to exile. But she cannot hide from the formidable new power threatening to seize control of France from the dread “Dark Queen,” Catherine de Medici–a diabolical woman known only as the Silver Rose. Miri has no choice but to turn to the one man she distrusts as much as she desires: Simon Aristide, the charismatic witch-finder who is now himself the hunted, and who has reluctantly made an unholy pact with Catherine. Miri must defy throne and family to save all that she loves most–and command a future greater than she could ever imagine. (From Amazon.ca)
This was an interesting story! I’m glad to see a new threat introduced besides The Dark Queen herself. It’s also nice to see Miri finally ‘grown up’ and I enjoyed watching her character develop throughout the three novels. She still maintains a bit of her naivete, yet most of it is gone because of what went on between her and Simon in the previous book.
I was so glad to see Martin Le Loup was back for this book! I loved him as the comic relief, and he gets even more comical when he squares off with Simon. The pace of the novel was good and the mystery behind The Silver Rose was also well done. I was hoping to see the return of the older two Cheney sisters, but it seems Miri is just the main feature for this book. The plot has a more paranormal magical feel to it, it’s still in a historical setting, but you don’t really see famous royalty as much as before. I suppose the book was to take a break from the usual setting, to give the series a good break and to try something new. It’s good because not only does the plot take a turn for the more interesting, but a new setting is nice to see.
I liked seeing Miri and Simon together. There is a lot of tension and passion between the two of them. The reader does not feel that much intensity between Miri and Martin but they’re also nice together as well. It’s hard to choose between Martin and Simon as they both have their good qualities, but it just seems Martin is the more fun of the two men. His charm and his ability to get a laugh or a smile from the reader just seems to come naturally.
There was only one thing I did not like: there was a love scene, but what annoys me is during that particular point in the book the characters were being followed with the intent to kill or harm. Yet the couple in question feel it’s all right to take the time to do the deed. This is what I can’t stand. Really? couples do that? when they’re in danger they feel the need to do the horizontal dance and not care there’s a band of men ready to kill them? why? is that necessary? we already know they’re in love what’s the point?! it just annoyed me and I don’t like seeing this in novels I’m reading. To me, this does not make sense. All this aside though, I did enjoy reading this book. The ending opens more possibilities for future books which I will pursue. I have become too attached to the characters to just give up (plus, I’d really like to know what’s in store for Le Loup!)
It’s a great book and written with the same quality of writing as the other two, so fans will not be disappointed. Those just getting started would also enjoy reading this although it would help at least reading The Courtesan. Characters from the previous book are carried over to this one.
I give it an 8 out of 10.