Becky Hutchison's Reviews > Windswept

Windswept by Deborah Martin
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it was amazing
bookshelves: historical, romance

In the book's beginning, Sabrina Jeffries tells readers she wrote WINDSWEPT (originally published in 1996) under the name Deborah Martin near the beginning of her career. With this edition, she revised the story to make it more appealing to today's romance audience. She "heightened the drama, enriched the storyline, tightened the dialogue, and stoked" the sexual tension between the two main characters. And I believe she succeeded. It's an enchanting romance and an absorbing mystery that addresses the themes of abuse, loneliness, and love.

The heroine, Catrin Price, has denied herself a loving relationship after her husband was killed on their wedding day. She believes her family is cursed from a spell cast by an ancestor causing the death of her descendents' husbands within three years of marriage. Catrin refuses to be the instrument of death for anyone else and has resigned herself to a life without another husband or any children. She spends her days studying Welsh myths and legends, overseeing her property, and helping her tenants and friends.

The hero, Evan Newsome, has also denied himself a chance to find love after he almost killed an innocent person in a jealous rage, for which his fiancee broke their engagement. His father, a tenant farmer, emotionally and physically abused his family, and Evan truly believes he follows in his father's footsteps. But he's worked hard to better himself, thanks to the help of Rhys and Juliana Vaughan, the owners of the farm his father tended. They recognized Evan's intellect, took him in and sent him to the best schools, treating him as one of their own. Evan is now a noted scholar and tutor at Cambridge and feels he can never pay back the debt he owes them.

Catrin and Evan meet when he tries to discover who killed his best friend. Evan knows that someone calling herself the Lady of the Mist offered to buy an ancient Druid cup his friend owned, so he's followed that trail. When he discovers the woman is Catrin, he misrepresents himself as needing information on a book he's writing. She knows of the genius Evan Newsome, who speaks multiple languages, has essays published in prestigious journals and has written on the beauty of Welsh verse. So she falls for his lies. As Evan gets to know her, he begins to doubt that she is a murderer. Their attraction is strong, and though Catrin knows she can never remarry, she opens up to him, trusting him more each day.

Pros: 1. Catrin and Evan are extremely likable, believable characters with strong moral beliefs and depth of personality. Like real people, they have faults and issues to overcome, but they are primarily caring and supportive individuals who try to do the right thing. 2. I like that it's a romance based in Wales. Along with Ireland, I think Wales is woefully underrepresented in historical romances today. 3. It's a well-written romantic mystery that is interesting and unique. 4. Vivid descriptions pulled me into the story and kept me enthralled until the very end. 5. Supernatural elements are lightly woven throughout the book with a successful conclusion.

Cons: The story had to end.

Overall: WINDSWEPT is a fast-paced romance with a unique storyline and well-developed main and secondary characters. I truly enjoyed the story and recommend it to anyone who loves their romance with a hint of mystery.

If You Like This, You Might Like: THE SINFUL SUITORS SERIES and THE HELLIONS OF HALSTEAD HALL SERIES by Sabrina Jeffries, SCANDALOUS GENTLEMEN OF ST. JAMES SERIES and HELLIONS OF HAVISHAM SERIES by Lorraine Heath, MAIDEN LANE SERIES by Elizabeth Hoyt, THE HEART OF A DUKE SERIES by Christi Caldwell

* An e-galley was provided by Pocket Books and Edelweiss for an honest review.
** Visit Blue Moon Mystery Saloon for more book reviews
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
January 12, 2017 – Finished Reading
January 15, 2017 – Shelved
January 15, 2017 – Shelved as: historical
January 15, 2017 – Shelved as: romance

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