Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Anchor and Storm by Kate PooleSandy M’s review of Anchor and Storm by Kate Poole
Historical erotic romance released by Ellora’s Cave on 4 April 07

Laughter, romance, tears, tenderness, and a little eroticism and you have yourself one comletely satisfying book. I’m so glad I found this jewel of an ebook.

First we have a December-May romance that begins in friendship when Edgar rescues Emily from the clutches of his utterly disgusting, money-grubbing nephew. Edgar invites her along on his multi-country journey, hoping for more than friendship but giving her the choice of taking things further. Emily readily agrees to this proposal, the only way she has to leave her current situation behind now that her role as governess is at an end. There are feelings between these two characters that start out sweet and simple, enjoying one another’s company, and it turns into love when they get to know one another during their travels.

Edgar had worried unnecessarily that his disability, his crooked and diseased legs, would make Emily flee.  She loves the man, she’s not repelled by his injuries nor does she love him for his title and his money. She always thought she’d never have the family she’d longed for after losing her home in the Highlands to war, so this is like a dream come true for her. It’s a beautiful relationship that develops for these two lonely people who have come to expect nothing more out of life.

Their happiness is marred when they learn that Edgar’s disease can be passed down to his children as his grandfather and father passed it on to theirs. He needs an heir, though, to keep his estate out of the hands of his nephew who will only destroy whatever he gets his hands on.  A nephew who will also try to keep Emily under his thumb to abuse her as he tried to do before. So Edgar proposes his plan to his wife, hoping she will agree. However, Emily wants nothing to do with his plan. She loves her husband and doesn’t to wish to lie with another.  When Edgar reminds her of what can happen, she reluctantly chooses Angus MacNeill, a former Highland laird now indentured to Edgar, as a surrogate.

Next we have Emily and Angus who have finally come to an unsteady truce after their initial rocky meeting.  Angus realizes Emily really does love Edgar and didn’t marry him for his money.  However, it takes time to to come to grips with the offer made to him by this couple desperate for a child. Loving Emily as he does, Angus finally agrees because he knows it’s the only way he’ll have her. The play between Emily and Angus is quite well done, especially when you expect them to be allies because they come from the same place and are both affected by the outcome of Culloden.  Their relationship is even more interesting when their love for each other comes at different times in different ways.

There is so much emotion in this book: Angus’ respect for his master, his anger at what happened to his people, and his love for Emily; Emily’s love for the two men, her crushed spirit at the beginning; Edgar’s willingness to share his love for his wife with another man to keep her safe; and even the respect and friendship between the two men is shown in such a beautiful way. I actually cried at not only the sacrificies of these characters, but also at their ability to love wholeheartedly; and I cried at the end, an ending that shoots straight through to your heart. I also like the fact that this book is not full of erotic scenes left and right. There is just enough to add spice and show love, but it doesn’t overwhelm you like a lot of ebooks. The menage scenes are just as well done, especially after the incredulity and then acceptance of the idea. This book is so perfectly balanced with every element the author chose to use, even the villainous nephew and his wife are used just the right amount.

Gwen reviewed this book almost a year ago. We each have the same problem with the book. It’s much too short.

sandym-icon1.jpgGrade: A

Here’s the book blurb:

     Edgar Armstrong, Earl of Callander, had not given much thought to marrying and producing an heir – until he meets Emily Sinclair. When their easy companionship grows into love, they learn that Edgar’s progressively debilitating disease could be passed on to his children. As their joy turns to despair Edgar finds a solution. If he can’t get her with child he knows just the man who can. But will Emily agree to his plan?

     Angus MacNeill, Lord Callander’s groom, thinks Emily married Edgar for his title, his money and the security he can give her. And when Edgar approaches him with a very unusual request Angus questions his master’s motives. Still, it doesn’t stop him from accepting Callander’s terms – it’s the only way he can be with Emily, even if only until she conceives.

     Deeply in love with Edgar, Emily will do anything he asks of her. But she never suspected he’d ask something like this! Despite Edgar’s reassurances she worries that his plan could destroy their marriage rather than strengthen it. And when she makes her choice, Emily wonders if there’s room enough for two men in her heart – and in her bed.

     Read an excerpt.