A trilogy. Say it in three. Done.
A historical romantic thriller with psycho murder scenes. I have read this book in the past, and enjoyed it because I could skim the slower parts. Now, I have listened to the audio, narrated by Heather Wilds. She did a fine job most of the time, giving the princess a pleasant Germanic accent, which seemed suitable. Her voice is easy on the ears, not grating. Her portrayal of Colin was also good. She didn't try to force her voice to sound deep and gruff, like a man's, which often grates on my ears. However, she showed little or no emotion when portraying the love scenes, and her portrayal of the butler, Flannaghan, was a bit disappointing.
The story itself is not my favorite historical by Garwood, but it's decent. The pacing is a bit slow and the plot a bit weak. Some parts are great, though.
I liked Colin's devoted butler, Flannaghan, who fell over himself for "his" princess, Alesandra. I liked Alesandra's cleverness, surreptitiously handling Colin's ledgers and finding a way to ease his wounded leg. Colin is often grouchy, but I liked him, too. He made me laugh a little (but I didn't laugh during this book as much as during some of Garwood's other historicals).
I could not buy the reasons given for Alesandra's decision to move in with a bachelor. Nope. Would never happen, lady's maid or no maid.
The abduction plot thread with the general who wanted to marry the throne was predictable and somewhat inconsistent. Plus, some threads were left unfinished.
I did not care for the scenes with the psychotic lady-killer, but this is typical of Garwood, to include grisly murder along with the seething thoughts of the sociopath. Apparently, she likes to write psychos into her stories, or maybe she depends on this trope to allow the hero to rescue, and to build tension.
It was good to see characters from the prequels. The scenes with Colin's brother Caine were entertaing -- the scenes when he called the princess "the plague" and when he watched Colin find something wrong with every potential husband.
I was excited to finish this series, but I must admit this book was my least favorite of the series. Once again, characters were great and there are always laughs, but Colin's story got to be a little over the top chauvinistic for me and that says a lot considering the times they are writing about. It was good to see continuing characters and I needed to finish the series; however, book 2 of the series remains my favorite.
I have a PhD in American Literature but my love affair with romance novels on audible is going strong.
I loved this book because I was so familiar with the character and the whole family after reading the first 3 books in the series (definitely begin with 1). It can stand alone fine, but it is much richer if you know the history of the main character, which is much more filled out in the first book of the series. Up until this book he's a rather minor character, but in his own book he a real sexy hunk. So read them all!
I am so happy with this new narrator. Now if she would just go back and redo The Secret by Julie Garwood I would be thrilled. For me narrators can make or break a good book. This narrator was good. I am not familiar with this narrator so it took me about 5 minutes to get use to her voice. But after that I was happy. I can't express how important a good narrator is to me. A bad one destroys a book while a good one can make an okay book better.
Castles is 1 of many of my favorite books. It is fast paced. Something is always happening with no long and boring periods. I call these types of books page-turners. And this is definitely one. I get bored with books very easily so this is important to me. I never got bored with this one.
The story has a lot of humor. Even after I have read the book so many times that I can read it in my head I still laugh at the funny spots and still look forward to my favorite scenes. I heartily recommend this book to one and all who enjoy a light and relaxing listen. It will bring a smile to your face. I find the characters very endearing. As you can see I don't give a description of the book. I let the publishers do that since I am not very good at writing. But I can give my opinion on what I think of the audio version of the book.
I would suggest you click the buy button on this book. Sit back and enjoy the story. It is a keeper.
Loved the book, hated the narrator. See the best review of the pronounciation of Colon... yeah, exactly....
It completes the story line
usually I quit noticing the narrators fake accents once I get drawn into the story, but not with this one, it drove me crazy! if the book was written by anyone, I would have quit listening, but I LOVE Garwood!!!
I enjoy Ms. Garwood's stories. I do not enjoy Ms. Wilds' narration. Her accents were horrible; she made the main character sound like a whiny twit. Which, having read and/or listened to a number of Julie Garwood stories before, I suspect she is not. I could not finish this.
Garwood wrote this back in the '90s, before she became the writer she is today, and it shows. The narrator's weak, borderline offensive accent and sleep inducing cadence when not speaking with the odd, French (?) accent, makes the book entirely unreadable. DNF
no. the narration was awful. The heroine sounded like she had a lisp and she pronounced "Colin" as "Colon" Not only a change from all the other books in the series but just bad.
The narrator who did the first 3 in the series
quit listening to so many audio books and finish it on my Nook. I love Julie Garwood's historical romances. I usually love audio books when I'm driving, walking, cleaning the house. Didn't finish this one. The narration IS that bad.
I have been a huge fan of Julie Garwood's books for years. I have read her books in print, on my kindle and now that I am commuting longer to work I started listening to her audiobooks. I could barely get passed the first couple of chapters! I was really hoping it would get better. Unfortunately Ms. Wilds narration had me grimacing from the start. I cringed every time she said "Colon". The accents were horrid and you could tell she was just reading pages and not telling the story. I love this book and will read it again and again, but I doubt I will be able to finish listening to it. I listened to the previous three books in the series all narrated by Susan Duerdon, who was wonderful! She really brought the characters to life.
I don't know that I would willing try another book narrated by Heather Wild.