Deception flames into passion when a lady's maid secretly takes her mistress' place in an arranged marriage.
On a frigid March day in Yorkshire in 1895, 10-year-old Marissa Ayers encounters the raven-haired, blue-eyed stranger for the first time. When next they meet, she has escaped the dust of the coal mines and is now a lady's maid at a fine estate, determined to escape her hardscrabble life. She instantly recognizes him, but has no inkling that their lives are about to come together in the most intimate way - until her mistress begs her to take her place in a marriage of convenience. Haunted by the memory of his lost love, Ian Tremayne is honor-bound by the promise he made to an old friend. His marriage to Katherine Mary Ahearn will be a union in name only. Yet something about the proud, green-eyed Englishwoman seems familiar... and intrigues him. He takes her home to America, where the willful beauty slowly begins to thaw his guarded heart.
©1991 Heather Graham Pozzessere, This edition published in 2014 by Open Road Integrated Media, Inc. (P)2014 Audible Inc.
The narrator was horrid.. Her accents were horrible and her attempts at playing the male and female characters made my hair stand .. Their voices varied a lot and some times her narration lapsed into different accents she played for different characters. Her Chinese accent was most outstandingly inaccurate and sounds more Indian.. The way she spoke and how she presented the conversations were awkward and did not match the story line. It felt monotonous and weird to listen to.
Admittedly, it might only be my personal opinion since everyone reads and envision the tone of the speech differently, but to me her narration ruined the story. Which was pretty good and I always love a happy ending and a good historical romance.
But really was the narrator that ruined it, and I was having so high hopes for audible since I saw so many good feedback about it online, I am sorely disappointed and will think very hard and recommend that everyone listen to the sample recording before buying or using your credit to purchase the book.
Story line could have worked. It really could have... The plot had a great beginning and a wonderful heroine with a great back story. Unfortunately, the story becomes predictable and the narrator is terrible! Her accent is beautiful until she come to a male part, especially that of our hero. She makes him sound like a pre pubescent boy that never becomes a man. Can't even finish the story because every time "he" talks it ruins the whole moment! Don't waste your time or money on this one. :(
I read Heather Graham's Civil War books back in the day. I've tried to check out some of her other stuff (the paranormal stories didn't do it for me). This book just did not hold my attention. I listened to almost half of it before I decided I didn't really care what happened to the characters. Romance novels are at times hard to listen to, and I agree with other reviews that this narrator did a poor job with the male voices. I wanted to like it because I am forever looking for romances based in the U.S without a faith component.
It's high one the list. Perhaps not at the top, but it was a very enjoyable and entertaining story.
Bridie did do a good job at differentiating all the characters. I knew exactly which character was speaking at all times, their voices were so unique. HOWEVER, I do have to comment on the way she narrated Ian.. I think perhaps it's because he was an American character and she naturally has a British accent, but his voice was pretty grating. It kept making me feel like I was listening to a 12 year old boy reading out loud and was VERY distracting. Ian had some amazing dialogue in this story too, which made it even more disappointing.
Yes, there were a few moments that moved me! I think what moved me most was when Marisa was caring for Francesca (the lost baby). She's a very minor character that briefly appears at the end of the novel, I realize, but I felt it was touching how Marisa bonded with her and cared for her.
It's a great story! Despite Ian's irritating voice, I think it's worth listening to.
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