Author: Pauline Montagna
Publisher: Mountain Lily Press
Publication Date: January 2011
Genre: Historical FictionSource: Review Copy from Author
Aurelia Rubbini, the only child of a rich merchant in 14th Century Italy, is a dutiful daughter, wife and mother, but she longs for something more than the restricted life intended for her. Then one day, her father returns home with an Asian slave boy, Batu, and Aurelia’s destiny is changed forever.
Aurelia and Batu are inexorably drawn to each other, but their forbidden relationship is doomed. Aurelia is forced to marry Lorenzo de Graziano, a nobleman with a dangerous reputation, but Batu’s presence arouses violent passions that Aurelia, in her innocence, can never understand. (Goodreads Synopsis)
I was approached by the author to review this work and, since it sounded like an interesting story, I agreed to give it a try.
Overall, the story was fairly enjoyable, but the characters, while reasonably well written, failed to truly engage my emotions, leaving me feeling a little apart from the action. This wasn't helped by the fact that there were sections of the EPUB copy I was sent with track changes mingled in - huge sections crossed out, bits slotted in here and there - which made it hard to read at times and really dragged me out of the story.
In general the writing was good and the storyline interesting, but I am only able to give it three stars as, for me, it was just missing that special spark. However, if you are keen on historical fiction with some romance mingled in, you might want to give this book a try.