Fangirl Musings's Reviews > Unveiled

Unveiled by Courtney Milan
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's review
Jun 03, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: classified-series-starters, genre-romance-historical, genre-romance-historical-victorian, trope-angst-ridden, trope-at-odds-couple, trope-childhood-bond, trope-enemies-to-lovers, trope-forbidden-love, trope-hero-across-the-tracks, trope-hero-alpha, trope-hero-beta, trope-hero-in-pursuit, trope-hero-job-self-made, trope-hero-scorned, trope-hero-tortured, trope-heroine-financial-hardship, trope-heroine-in-deception, trope-heroine-in-disguise, trope-heroine-job-medical, trope-heroine-tortured, trope-heroine-spinster-old-maid, trope-heroine-working-class, trope-lost-heir, trope-revenge-plot, trope-heroine-fallen-woman, trope-rags-to-riches-vice-versa, trope-siblings-or-family-within, trope-shhh-its-a-secret, author-courtney-milan, series-turner, trope-big-misunderstanding, trope-challange-bet-or-deal, trope-employer-employee-or-office, trope-fairy-tale-cinderella, trope-hero-antihero, trope-hero-genius-or-cerebral, trope-hero-job-business-man, trope-hero-misfit, trope-hero-smitten-with-heroine, trope-hero-working-class, trope-heroine-across-the-tracks, trope-heroine-alpha, trope-heroine-betrayed-by-hero, trope-heroine-bluestocking, trope-heroine-hoyden-or-spirited, trope-heroine-illegitimate, trope-heroine-misfit, trope-heroine-prim-and-proper, trope-heroine-scorned, trope-hilarity-within, trope-mistaken-or-hidden-identity, trope-not-your-usual-conflict, trope-perfect-banter, trope-star-crossed-love
Recommended to Fangirl Musings by: Smart Bitches, Trashy Books
Recommended for: If you can read, read it!
Read from May 11 to June 01, 2013 , read count: Once

Books are weird.

Sometimes they're epic, sometimes they're shittastic, and other times they fly around like a YoYo in a Bounce House. In the case of Milan's book, Unveiled, said novel falls way-the-hell into the latter category. Before I dive into my I'm-Gonna-Rant-And-Then-Shut-Up review, know with absolute certainty that this book kicked SO much ass! Yep, I liked it, I loved it, and I spazzed in wanting so much more of it, truly. But! Upon the start of the book, and definitely within the first one hundred pages I was all...well...

...Yeah. Kind of like that, except more, "I don't know where the hell this book is going!" as apposed to the general, "Dude, what the serious seriousness?!" Any book can struggle at the onset, but Milan's novel, for some inexplicable reason, came off like a drunk hobo making the switch from boxed wine to Vodka; a good plan, but not without some stumbles and issues. Ironically, my yes-but-no interest in the first half of the novel didn't stem from the lack of interestingly dynamic characters; me LOVE some of them characters! Rather, the story just jump-starts with a BANG into the meat of the book without any real buildup. Throughout the first few pages, I was just searching for a foothold or some story line clarity, like bad.

Unveiled didn't seem to be a Happy-Happy-Star-Ranking kind of deal, at first, since the heroine and I...well, we didn't get along too well in the beginning. She jumped from page one seeming like the Eternal Ass-Snob, and while I know it's illogical to say one can't enjoy a story if the lead characters aren't likable (I KNOW, okay?!), I still maintain that it's a prerequisite for my judgmental ass. Margaret felt like Queen Bitch for no other reason than the fact that the reader is denied personal time with her before the book leaps off, so here I was thinking, "Yep! I'm gonna hate her!"

Yep! I sucked on that assumption! One of the most damn-woman-you're-good! aspects of Courtney Milan is that she pwns the ability to create fascinatingly dimensional characters that are layered in complexity. This is obviously true for Margaret, who was a unique mix of strength and weakness, confidence and self-consciousness, and pretty much every other polarizing identifier. Likewise, such is, can, and should be said for Ash, the hero who embodied probably one of the most interesting male roles I've ever read in quite a while. His weaknesses gave him a strength that made him simultaneously multifaceted, and fun to read.

Interestingly enough, while the above is true for the two leads of the book, the entire cast of characters contained a lot of the cool conflicting character traits, too. The brothers, each set belonging to both the hero and heroine, were the antithesis to "set pieces," were damned-yes vital to the plot, and granted so much more to the reading of this story than I can possibly articulate. The fact that the entire novel felt realistic in its character creations, even down to the inconsequential secondary and tertiary cast, shows Milan's got some mad writing skills to her credit.

(Not to Milan, apparently!)

Lastly, the final thing that just blows me out of the water is Courtney's ability to create an exceptionally complex plot that is entirely, completely, OH MY GOD ALL THE WAY dependent on emotionally driven conflict. And, yes, she even manages to do so without once making the novel come off too weak, as though there was no plot in existence whatsoever, or without bogging the whole ship down with Angsty Drama Bullshit. When considering how well the story sails along, all the while making me FEEL for Margaret's loyalty struggle, making me FEEL for Ash's feelings of inadequacy, hell, making me FEEL for their emotional story as a whole...I just...I can't even!

Incidentally, if you're an author who can write THIS for your lead character, how the hell is it possible to not just fan-girl over the book, like lots?!

"Because if you were suggesting that you would sacrifice your sister's reputation to serve your own purposes, think again. If you do, I won't just steal your title and your lands. I will run any bank that holds your funds into the ground. I will bribe your servants to slip nettles into your bed. I will hire trumpets to stand outside your home every evening, where they will sound notes at irregular intervals. You will never have a solid night's sleep again."

Yep. I approve!
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Reading Progress

05/11/2013 marked as: currently-reading
05/11/2013 page 71
18.0% "

Umm...this is kind of, um, boring? I don't know. 71 pages in, and I'm The heroine? Definite probs."
05/23/2013 page 113
29.0% "So, Margaret is still kind of dislikeable (sort of), but I have to admit the book's starting to grow on me. (GIF not relevant.)

06/01/2013 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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James Witherspoon I do hope this will be an enjoyable read for me. Thanks for the recommendation. Good review my dear. :)

message 2: by Leah (new) - added it

Leah Okay, the GR description wasn't enough to make me contemplate reading this, but your review definitely helped.

Fangirl Musings Awww, thanks babe! Glad you decided to read the review; I TOLD you there were no spoilers :).

Hehehehe, Leah, hon, you just made my day like YES! The fact that you added it based on my review JUST GAVE ME SO MANY FUCKING HAPPYS RIGHT NOW YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW!!! :)

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