Tag Archives: Chemistry

#Brilliantly Funny: The Ugly Stepsister by Aya Ling

The blurb reads,

When Kat accidentally rips apart an old picture book, she’s magically transported into the world of Cinderella–as Katriona, one of the ugly stepsisters! Life turns upside down now that she’s a highborn lady and must learn how to survive the social season, including how to get through the door in a huge metal hoop skirt. To get back, she’ll have to complete the story, right to the end of happily ever after. But the odds are huge: the other stepsister is drop-dead gorgeous, the fairy godmother is nowhere to be found, and the prince, despite being insanely hot, openly dislikes balls. Can she ever return to the modern world?”

the ugly stepsister aya ling


So I requested this one on NetGalley at some point of time without even realising it. And then finally, one evening in Goa, when I was on holiday, I clicked this one on my Kindle and started reading it.

The blurb was immediately catchy and I dove straight into the story. AND I LOVED IT!~

I love stories from the Regency period and this re-telling of Cinderella was so very well written. I absolutely loved Kat and I was rooting for her every step of the way.

Of course, Murphy interfered here and what had to go wrong did go wrong everywhere in the book. But Kat’s personality shone through every dealing she had with the Prince or with her mother.

Reading through this book did make me feel so grateful that we lived in the times we did. Living in those ages with whatever Kat had to go through was definitely not easy.

It did make me wonder and think, that with all the media attention calling India a sexist country, it wasn’t really any much different in UK where this story is based. They were equally sexist and treated women as dirt probably a lot more than in our own society. Talk about not hearing anything bad about your ex-rulers. (Britain did rule India for over 2 centuries)

I sooo loved Prince Edward. And all that sparring that Kat and Edward had. I just wished the book would continue and that their fairytale would continue. I loved reading how hard Kat tried to fight her rising chemistry with Edward.

This book made me realise how wonderful the Romance genre can be. Light and meant to give you a break from the vagaries of life, it is books like these which make me want to stick to this genre and this blog and write more about Romances!

It has made me realise my love for Regency Romances and now I’m busy hunting for more of those online.

If you’re an author who has written a Regency romance, please contact me so I can review your book!


My Rating: 5/5 stars


#Book Review- A Woman of Honour by Marlow Kelly

The blurb reads

a woman of honour

Duncan Campbell wakes to discover he is imprisoned with a woman in his enemy’s dungeon in the Highlands of Scotland. The disenchanted warrior hopes his last few moments on earth will be spent in the arms of the sweet-voiced Isabel. If only she will cooperate.

Isabel Douglas has no intention of obliging the crude captive. The penniless noblewoman considers herself too tall and thin to be desirable. She intends to become a nun. But first, disguised as a boy, she must deliver an important letter to Scotland’s hero in hiding, King Robert the Bruce.

Together, the pair make a daring escape that plunges them into the bleak countryside in the middle of winter. In the struggle to survive, they learn the true strength of their feelings for each other. But when Duncan’s animosity towards the king becomes evident, Isabel must decide between her heart and her country.

a woman of honour

OMG, it feels like ages since I reviewed a book and a romance book at that. This blog had begun to feel unloved!

I had requested this book on the Making Connections group and somehow, being a short story, it slipped from my fingers and got lost between the tons of PDFs in my Download History.

A day before my exam, when I was looking for a break, I chanced upon this book and began reading it. And I was glad I did.

At the outset, I have to say, this isn’t a spectacular romance. I don’t know how a romance can be spectacular in say 60 pages, or maybe I haven’t read a romance short which has blown my mind. Yet.

The book had a very intriguing start and a captivating blurb which is why I requested a copy. And I was intrigued to find out who Duncan was and who Isabel was. Their chemistry was palpable. It reminded me of my special someone and made me smile.

But apart from that, the problem with a novella is the character development. I wasn’t entirely happy with the way the characters were developed. When Duncan praised Isabel, I could imagine her characteristics only because it was written as such.

Isabel spent the whole book in a quandary about falling in love with Duncan, and about his clan, her appearance, and delivering a letter to King Robert.

I suppose a lot of my feeling comes from inadequately knowing Scottish history, so in that sense, the review can come off to be a little naive and lacking knowledge.

Duncan was a good and strong character, he was tall, muscular and broad. He knew what he wanted and went shamelessly after it. Isabel was conflicted and devoted. She was also naive and inexperienced. She’d been misled all her life into thinking she was a nobody.

I didn’t really understand why the MacDougals were chasing Duncan and what tiff he had with his family. I refer to my lack of knowledge and I’m conflicted about letting it slide.

A major part of the book relates to Duncan and Isabel escaping the clutches of the MacDougals. At one point, the MacDougals come close to Campbell (Duncan’s family) land and there another chase ensues. I thought this last chase was chaotic.

Another grouse I had with this book was that it was trying to rush things too much. The end went absurdly quickly and everything was a happy ending, whereas it didn’t really seem like it. The ending seemed rather forced.

I did like Isabel and Duncan’s chemistry. I could feel the lust and the passion. That the book did not lack. But I felt the lack of a deeper understanding between the lead characters. I didn’t understand the significance of the letter that Isabel had and somehow I didn’t feel any spark between the two characters. There are some books where  a connection between the lead pair is so evident, it jumps off the page. This lead pair however, had a muted chemistry when it came to knowing each other and character development.

I still laud the author for writing a concise short. I am sure this would have been an interesting one had it been slightly longer. It matters so much more when the only things binding characters to each other is a deep understanding and not just lust.

Somehow I felt that all the running that the characters did, diminished the chances of building a relationship. The time span was too short for them to build anything and that was a let down.

Give A Little Love to this book? : Maybe Not

My Rating: 2/5