Title: Moonstruck Madness
Author: Laurie McBain
Publisher: Sourcebooks, Inc
Publication Date: May 2011 (originally published in 1977)
ARC: 384 pages
Genre: Historical Romance
Source: Review Copy
RATING: 5/10 – Take it or leave it
She’s one thing by day, something else altogether by night…
After escaping the slaughter of her clan at a young age, Scottish noblewoman Sabrina Verrick provides for her siblings by living a double life, until the night she encounters the Duke, and her secret and all she holds dear is threatened…
He’s so disillusioned, he’s completely vulnerable…
With his inheritance at stake, Lucien, Duke of Camareigh, sets a trap for the Scottish beauty with the piercing violet eyes, never imagining what will happen when the trap is sprung…
As their lives become irreversibly entangled, Lucien and Sabrina become each other’s biggest threat, as well as their only salvation…
Originally published in 1977, this has been re-issued for today’s market. Trying to write this review without using the term ‘Bodice ripper’ is useless, because that is exactly what it is and for me, this is not exactly a bad thing. Without these original bodice rippers broadening the publishing market in the 70’s I wonder if we’d have the fantastic paranormal romances we love today.
Sabrina, in an attempt to support her family, becomes a highwayman. One night she stands-and-delivers the Duke of Camareigh – big mistake Sabrina! Because guess what? He now wants you dead!
Of course, we know this will never happen! We follow the Duke’s plot to capture Sabrina and his discovery that ‘he’ is actually a ‘she’.
The characters were very frustrating at times, and I really hated the way they treated each other. There was so much drama, and really all they needed to do was sit and talk for ten minutes. But I suppose we would have a very short book. The Duke at one point slaps Sabrina, which did leave a bad taste in my mouth and made me dislike the character. Sabrina is17, and while I respected her decision to support her family by any means necessary, I just couldn’t relate to her, and therefore couldn’t like her.
All these points are not necessarily wrong, I just feel after reading today’s heroes and their attitude towards women (they respect and actually seem to like their romantic interests) it felt too alien for me to want to enjoy their romance after their courtship and wooing, if you could call it that.
‘Moonlight Madness‘ is like an old fashioned, soap opera style bodice ripper. The heroine is fiery, and the hero is frosty and they clash, and fight and argue. There are sword fights, drama, twists and turns, and snooty cousins with evil plots. It was fun in a way to see how far the genre has come and how different the romance is.
If you like the old style romances, then you’ll really enjoy this. But if you feel like me, it was really taking a step backward in the historical romance genre. Today’s historical writers such as Eloisa James, or Stephanie Laurens might be more your cup of tea.
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