Penny’s Rating: C
Let me preface this review by saying, I am not religious. If I were, I probably really would have enjoyed Jamie Carie’s new novel The Forgiven Duke a good deal more. The main characters are very, very Christian, and while that is probably accurate in a historical context, it really got in the way of the story for me.
Spoiler Alert: Please note, this next segment contains a few spoilers. You have been forewarned.
Below are some of the aforementioned “ridiculous circumstances”:
Really. St. Easton is kidnapped twice? Why draw the line there? Shouldn’t he have been sold into slavery too? Maybe in the next book he can be kidnapped by cultists and brainwashed to forget Alexandra. Being kidnapped twice, is just beyond absurd. St. Easton spends a lot of time is this book being seasick and miserable, and then when he finally gets to be with Alexandra, he avoids her like the plague. Are you kidding me? You get kidnapped twice, and tortured, all because of this girl who you love, and now you’re not even going to talk to her? Grrrr.
Alex is no better at honesty than St. Easton. She never talks to him about anything that happened with Lord Lemon, and she really really should. A lie of omission is still a lie. Because of this, readers are left with some major cliffhangers at the end of the book. When the book ends, Alex still hasn’t told St. Easton about John’s trickery and betrayal. So, grrrrrrrrr to her too. Plus, Alex’s parents are still missing, and still in very grave danger, and every government in the world wants to get their hands on their alleged discovery.
I would also like to note, I do think it’s possible to have common sense and have faith in God. In Carie’s world however, for most of the book, they appear to be mutually exclusive. I think this is perhaps why their faith irritates me. It’s not their faith in God per se, so much as their utter rejection of their own conscience and instincts. Here’s my problem with this. If you believe in God, God gave you instincts and a conscience right? So why don’t you listen to them? Of course if you don’t believe in God (like me), you rely on yourself, (not a higher power), so maybe I place more importance on common sense and conscience? I don’t know. There are instances in the book where both Alex and St. Easton realize that in ignoring their own instincts that they are in fact not listening to God, so maybe that is part Carie’s message.
I am, in spite of my irritations with the book, curious to find out what happens to Alex and St. Easton as they embark on their next journey to pursue her parents. I for one will be keeping an eye out for book 3.