In defense of her honor, innocent Leda Etoile has burned all her bridges and taken refuge in her tiny attic room in a shabby boarding house in London. But her last safe haven is invaded when she wakes to find a man hidden in the dark - a man with golden hair and the face of a fallen angel, who moves in the night like a shadow.
Will he be her savior, or her ruin? Samuel Gerard draws her inexorably into the richest circles of aristocratic England. But even as Leda falls in love with a man she can never have, she must keep his secrets. Though everything about him is shame and illusion, this shadow warrior desperately desires what only Leda can give him - absolute love, and the truth about himself.
The incredibly successful pairing of Laura Kinsale and Nicholas Boulton has been honored once again, winning a THIRD Earphones Award from AudioFile Magazine, this time for The Shadow and the Star. Sweeping listeners from the jubilee parades of Park Lane to the flower-scented breezes of Hawaii, Boulton brings this beloved Kinsale classic to memorable life.
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~~~"HOPEFUL ROMANTIC"~~~ *** Love Audio Books....Especially Historical Romances *** ~~ "Reviews Should Never Contain Spoilers ~~
Laura Kinsale's books have become some of my favorite books to listen to on Audible. The blending of Laura's writing and the narration of Nicholas Boulton are a double duo that nobody should miss!! This superb combination is a force to be reckoned!
This is a lovely story of two unconventional people who meet and discover what they have learned in life is not necessarily 100% accurate. Samuel is a "ninja" warrior with a disturbing past and Leda is a innocent sweet tempered young lady who ends up in situations she didn't expect. It is a charming story that draws you in from the beginning and when it ends leaves you with the feeling that you've just said goodbye to some old friends. I really wish it was longer!!
Not surprising.....this one is worth a credit for sure!
I read so I can write
Everytime I 'open' a Kinsale book, I do so with great expectation. This is because the very first one I bought so blew me away that I was immediately pressured by expectation and wondering if she could maintain the same level. The Shadow and the Star was my fourth Kinsale book and so far I have had no disappointment. The only one I can forsee is the day I finish the last of her books and face the disappointment of not having another to look forward to.
An absolute MUST read. While I was reading this book I had an amazing feeling of being detached from this life. The story kept playing in my head when I was actually not reading the book. The story truly took me back into this time period more so than any other historical romance I have read to date and I’ll have to say I owe it greatly to Nicholas Boulton’s superb reading performance. I absolutely LOVE this man’s gift. It is also extremely well written. What a wonderful combination of talents.
I came across one reviewer who claimed Nicholas Boulton had "ruined" her for all other narrators and after listening to him in Flowers from the Storm and now this one, well I whole-heartedly agree. Nicholas Boulton's voice is pure bliss and his performance is exquisite. Honestly, I do believe he could read me a tax form and I may clutch my heart in divine anguish. I'm ecstactic that he reads all of Laura Kinsale's books and I purchased all that were available for sale after listening to Flowers from the Storm (I'm staggering them between several other audiobooks so that I can slowly savor them).
What is so amazing about the pairing of Boulton and Kinsale is that he perfectly performs the beautiful, tormented characters and heart crushing plots that Kinsale has devised. Her words are lovely, but Boulton, without a doubt, heightens any emotion a reader could summon by just reading alone. Really, you should be forbidden to read Kinsale's books when there is such a narrator as Boulton to perform them. I mean Japanese, Hawaiian, English and British accents...I think he's unbeatable.
The beginning of this book started off a bit shaky for me; I had my doubts about the Japanese story line and I waited for it to become the one aspect that wouldn't work in this book; however, Kinsale pulled it off. I would hesitate to call Samuel a Ninja at all. He was conditioned and educated on many levels of respect and self control and learning to fight was a strong part of that (with and without a sword). I enjoyed the short chapters of Samuel as a boy being trained in Hawaii interlaced with the intense, present day relationship with Leda.
Like Flowers from the Storm, I felt a bit speechless at the end of this book... Kinsale really pushes the reader's comfort level as to how much their heart can really take; I was amazed I was able to survive the emotional rollercoaster this book took me through.
I read the book when it was first released and loved it so much then. I've reread parts of it several times since and loved it all over again each time. This is merely an alternate method of experiencing this totally wonderful story. Both reading and hearing it had an equal impact for me.
Very hard to narrow it down to one. There are so many. I guess it would be the scene at Christmas-time when Kai is presented with the diamond necklace and all she does is scold him for not realizing that it wasn't an appropriate gift for the situation, then passes it on to her mother. All while Leda knows Samuel's heart must be breaking, yet he shows nothing to let on.
The variety of voices that matched each of the characters so well.
When I read it initially, I did cry in quite a few instances. The audio performance made me laugh aloud at several passages that I don't remember laughing at when reading it. One of the many reasons this is my favorite book of all time is because the author has an unequalled talent for taking her readers through the entire range of emotions. Her characters make the reader care about them so deeply that one experiences each emotion right along with them: the hurt, joy, anguish, shame, heartbreak, anger, love, panic, and exhilaration.
The Shadow and the Star has always been one of my ultimate favorite books. I love Samuel's angst, how he drove himself to be fast and deadly, yet struggled with his lust. The way the author showed his progress from lust to love was amazing. Leda is possibly my favorite Kinsale heroine, innocent, naïve, bound by her moral code, yet steadfast in her principles. Mr. Boulton did a beautiful job of showing both the hero and the heroine. Bravo!
The author/narrator combo of Kinsale and Boulton are just too great to describe as anything but the gold standard! I save these books for when I want to listen to something outstanding. I am never disappointed. This is another wonderful story of two lives coming together through very unusual circumstances. I love the way this author takes you right into the mind and heart of the characters. Leda with her prim and proper ways, combined with Samuel and his dark side, it is just so excellent. And the narration, the different voices, accents, once again just makes the experience. Would give 10 stars if I could. And can't wait to savor another one by this author and narrator.
How many times can this author and narrator write and read a great book. they are what Michael Angelo is the painting what Muhammad Ali is to boxing what Prince and Michael Jackson are to entertainment....amazing! !!!
It's my first book read by him. I'll be looking for more.
Laugh, cry, anger. I had all kinds of reactions. I felt sorry for Samuel because of his sad past, but I also hated him for making Leda thinks that she was not the one he wanted for most part of the book . He redeemed himself, but there were times that I wanted to strangle him.
It's worth the credit. It's romance, adventure, history all in one.
A superb read
the climactic lagoon battle
He makes the king's English of the time sound like it, and then he adds in some Hawaiian of the era. The man's range is superb. His ability to bind the listener to the tale just as good.
This book always was entrancing to me with its range over England thru Hawaii, with its apt descriptions of down in the luck London as well as the latest highborn contrivances and life among the upper classes there. Moving then to soft flowery vales high up in the valleys of Oahu and to the reedy shallows of old Pearl Harbor. Lots of research, lots of love for these venues by the author and then enhanced even more by reader Boulton.
"Another wonderful Journey!"
This is another magnificent combination of a brilliant storyteller and a wonderful narrator; together they create perfection.
Leda was taken in by a gentlewoman as a young girl and was taught all about the upper class Etiquette of the day; unfortunately her benefactress died and there was no provision for Leda. All the rules went out of the window when she had to find a job and find somewhere to live. Then she meets Samuel and another magical story begins......
This is another exciting journey of the heart, mind and senses that we come to expect from Laura Kinsale.
Another wonderful book choc full of characters so alive and diverse, each with so many layers that you must open your mind and in so doing, you are watching as well as listening.
Nicholas Boulton is the best there is and such a talent.
I am eagerly awaiting the next two books out this year and hope, with everything crossed, that she will eventually complete ALL her books on Audible.
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