REVIEW: The Legend of the Werestag by Tessa DareSaturday, July 4, 2009 13:00
What happens when you combine a house party, unrequited love, and a mythical creature? Why, you get Tessa Dare’s new novella, The Legend of the Werestag, of course. I had been hearing (reading?) raves about this story all over the interwebs so I knew I had to read it. And I wasn’t disappointed – it totally lived up to the hype.
Our story begins at night in Swinford Woods, where the members of the house party are searching for the local man-beast (recently re-christened the werestag). Miss Cecily Hale catches a glimpse of something in the moonlight and goes off into a section of woods alone. She encounters a stag and then is charged by a wild boar. Before she comes to serious harm, someone rushes out of the darkness to save her, kills the boar and disappears into the mist. But who saves her, the legendary werestag or someone else?
That’s all the story info you’re getting out of me, faithful reader. I will tell you this instead. I loved the author’s voice and am anxiously awaiting her next story. I was impressed by her ability to give the reader such well-rounded characters in such a short number of pages. None of the characters felt flat or shorted in any way – and there are even intriguing hints of characters that might pop up later in future books (the mysterious neighbor who recently inherited an earldom, for example).
If you like tales of unrequited lovers separated by war and then reunited to find that many things have changed, tortured heroes who are trying to be noble and heroines who know what they want and aren’t afraid to say so – this is a story you should try.
To capture love, sometimes you have to grab it by the horns…
If a woman could die of humiliation, Cecily Hale would have perished three hours ago. Luke Trenton had finally returned to Swinford Manor, only to cruelly spurn her long-held love. But she couldn’t conveniently die of shame on the spot—oh, no. Instead she joined her friends on this ridiculous search for a legendary man-beast. Now she’ll die here—alone in the woods, at the tusks of a snarling boar.
Luke left for war a dashing youth and returned a man—just not the same man Cecily fell in love with. His passion for her is stronger than ever, but the ravages of battle changed him in ways she wouldn’t understand. Pushing her away was supposed to save her, not throw her into the path of another inhuman creature…or into the arms of another man.
For it is a man who rescues Cecily, just as the boar attacks. A mysterious, silent man who disappears into the woods, leaving her with just a glimpse—of a fleeing white deer. Could her rescuer be the man-beast of local lore?
A dangerous myth has captured Cecily’s imagination, putting Luke on the horns of a dilemma. Unless he summons the passion and tenderness to win her back, he could lose her forever…to the Werestag.
Warning: This is a humorous, passionate historical romance, not a paranormal shifter story. However, it does feature a harrowing encounter with a wild beast, a tortured hero who feels half-human, and the unleashing of animal urges. In other words: explicit sex, mild language.
Read an excerpt. (scroll down)