In Shadow Music by Julie Garwood, our heroine, Gabrielle, is the daughter of a princess and an English baron. King John has arranged a marriage for Gabrielle with a laird from the Scottish highlands in order to create an alliance for peace. Unfortunately, two other barons have been vying for her hand as well. While trying to prevent Gabrielle's marriage to the laird and claim her for themselves, the barons succeed in destroying her reputation instead. Gabrielle is an outcast without king or country and is taken in by the MacHugh clan. Knowing the only way to salvage her reputation is to make her his wife, Laird Colm MacHugh offers to marry her. What starts out as a marriage of convenience quickly becomes something else.
Although the plot is interesting and the book is well written, I had difficulty getting invested in any of the characters. The heroine was too lifeless and the hero was too harsh. The usual comic elements that I have come to expect from Ms. Garwood were mostly missing this time and the supporting characters had little to no personality. I'm not sure where this one went off the rails, but it was not what I was expecting.
BEST FEATURE: Any time Brodick Buchanan shows up. Although his character is more toned down than in Ransom, he's still the life of this party.
WORST FEATURE: The lack of sexual tension. A must for all good romance novels, this book was seriously lacking in heat.
PARENTAL WARNING: mild violence and sexual content that isn't overly explicit.
MY RATING: 2 - It's never a good sign when you'd rather read about the supporting characters than the main couple.
car – yph [kair-if] – A woman with supernatural abilities created to maintain the balance between good and evil. Regan Thompson was a normal college student with dreams of becoming a doctor. In one night, everything she cared about was wrenched away from her and she discovered that she was a caryph, and the inevitable target of a formidably powerful demon that is rising up against humanity. With the help of a secret society known as the Order of the Caryph, Regan will have to learn how to master her supernatural abilities in order to defend herself as well as mankind. An inexperienced college student, Regan will find friendship, love and confidence during her evolution into something entirely different. But an unexpected betrayal will raise the question, how do you fight someone who knows more about you than you do?
Author Lynn Moyle lives in Des Moines with her husband and two children. She is an avid reader as well as a writer, and has wanted to be an author since she was a child. She is currently working on the next installment of the Legend of the Caryph series, which will continue the story of Regan and the magical world she finds herself immersed in.