Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Scarlet Shadows by Emma Drummond

Scarlet Shadows by Emma DrummondVictoria is only 17 years old and an orphan when she is betrothed to Charles, a titled military man of 38, considered a fine catch . His outward charm masks a stern, controlling nature which Victoria starts getting whiffs of even before the wedding, but youthful inexperience and naivity make a dangerous combination.

While at the family estate in the months before their planned wedding, Victoria becomes companion to Charles' brother Hugo (at home recovering from temporary blindness) and starts falling for his easy nature. Still, even after a taste of what true love is she feels honor bound to go through with her marriage to Charles.

What follows is a diasterous marriage, family feud, tragedy and war. Both brothers (being military men) are assigned to the Crimea. Victoria goes along as a military wife. She has to deal with the violence of her husband and the smoldering glances of Hugo. Added to that is sickness, storms, starvation and the turmoil of war. Injury and death doesn't even begin to cover what becomes a full scale blood bath in the infamous "charge of the light brigade "

Emma Drummond writes in a gripping, readable style. Her characters LIVE (and yeah, they die too) and even if you dont like them you want to know what becomes of them. So Scarlet Shadows kept me turning the pages.

In saying that, its not a cheerful read. And I didn't enjoy it as much as "Forget the Glory ". (By the way both SS and FTG are based on the Crimean war so there are similarities between them and some of the same events are mentioned.)

So whose the better hero? Hugo (in SS) or Rowan (in FTG) . Hmmmm. Both are angsty tortured heroes. Very hard to choose. Hugo sees Victoria's worth from the very start which is sooo sweet, while Rowan has to have Mary pounded over his head for him to see her as more than a maid. But still, once he sees her, TRULY sees her....*sigh* ..

The better heroine? Victoria (in SS) or Mary (in FTG) ?
Mary, hands down.


SEX : Non explicit (but nonetheless mature) scene of marital rape, past dalliances on the part of male characters are mentioned. Passionate longing.
PROFANITY : Pretty mild. D 's and B 's.
VIOLENCE : Brief but intense battle scenes.

MY RATING: Strong PG 13
Recommended for: NA and A readers

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