Kate's Reviews > One Unashamed Night

One Unashamed Night by Sophia James
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's review
Mar 13, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: historical-romance
Read in March, 2011

** spoiler alert ** I had really high hopes for this book. Our hero is blind, our heroine thinks she's plain (though it's obvious she isn't - no one she encounters in the book says she is) and they like discussing politics.

**********************HERE THERE BE SPOILERS***********************

Okay, so here are my issues. Our hero, Taris, is blind - great start. He hasn't been born blind, so he has to deal with the issues of being blind in a society that is not kind to those with disabilities. Even more awesomer. He says he can count on one hand the number of people who know his secret - but those do NOT include the servants at his house, other than his valet. Which I find particularly bizarre, because you'd think they'd notice. Especially people like his housekeeper and his butler - I mean, he spends ALL of his time there. He has one friend in London who knows and acts as a guide through social events (his brother is so racked with guilt that it just gets awkward). He's managed to make his way around London, though restricting it so he doesn't have to reveal his secret to the general public. I would have liked to see more of him learning to deal with being blind.

Bea is plain. And she's a bluestocking. And she's barren, but not really. And she has a secret sensuality. And her husband abused her because of all of the above. And there's a man after her trying to kill her. Too many tropes in one lady. Not to mention, that for an intelligent woman, she's pretty clueless. There were so many Misunderstandings that centered on her (Taris pretty much thought she just didn't want someone to take away her freedom). She thinks he's ignoring her because she's plain/lower class/too forward. Then she thinks he's a drunkard. There are a couple of moments where she could have put the pieces together much earlier - OR JUST ASK. She basically goes to him (IN PUBLIC) and says, "Hey, I know you're an alcoholic. I want to try and cure you." And, of course, she gets pregnant, because we can't have barren historical fiction heroines. And no one seems to notice after 3 months, except, of course, Taris.

The sex was mediocre - this is my first HQ historical, so I don't know if that's par for course. I prefer more steam. Considering this whole story revolves around a night they can't forget, I was disappointed on that end. They did it three times, that's all I remember. She seemed to know (despite being practically celibate with her husband after he told her she was barren) what to do, what she wanted, she wasn't shy. I'll buy that, but I'd like deets plz.

The story seemed to fly by. I wanted more time to get to know these people. I felt like not enough time was spent - this was a full-length story crammed into a category size. Taris and Bea could have been interesting, and much more developed. Instead, we get constant flashbacks from her of her abusive husband, her self-destructive thoughts about how plain she is, Taris not telling her he's blind (again and again), and a killer who is so easily caught there is one paragraph devoted to telling us he surrendered without a fight.

That being said, I want more heroes like Taris, who have problems besides the usual scarred soldier or lusty rake. I bought the book specifically because of that - and I challenge authors to continue to write about these heroes, even when it doesn't work for this reader. :)
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05/02/2016 marked as: read

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Saleena Qureshi I still think it was quite realistic, she was told for years about her barren state, that she could not even imagine she could ever conceive a child. And the sickness that came with it, she thought of it as real sickness. Emerald also noticed her pregnancy. Also the guilt that Taris's brother felt seemed realistic, his brother lost his sight to save him, everyday would remind him of that, he surely would feel guilty.
I agree more deets would have been helpful. And I agree considering how intelligent she was shown she should have placed the pieces together sooner but at the same time when Taris first stumbled infront of her, her past overwhelmed her which might have prevented her from seeing the truth laid infront of her.
And I was too dissappointed when when the killer was caught in only one paragraph! That was really a setback. It was like the book at the end was just forced to complete.

But I still have hopes for the author as an older widow woman and a blind man in an old setting is not quite appealing. I did not even plan on reading it but while travelling having no other choice than this I gave it a try and right after the accident it caught my complete attention.

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