Thursday, March 17, 2011

China Rose by Marsha Canham ***

Sigh. A burst bubble. This is the lowest rating I have given a Marsha Canham book!

Oh, there was some swashbuckling, and talk of ships. But it was mostly a rather odd tale of 3 brothers. China Rose is the heroine, pledged by her late father to marry the eldest brother, Ranulf Cross. She arrives 2 weeks before the wedding, a country miss not at all sure why she is betrothed to this gentleman. He and his 2 younger brothers don't seem to get along at all - the middle one, Justin, is usually at sea; Eugene, the youngest, just seems to sort of fade into the background. The brothers have a terrible family secret: their father went down with a ship bound for France, seemingly a traitor, and the family fortune was lost.

Well, nothing was as it seemed, and really, the oldest and youngest brothers were really quite madmen and unpleasant in the extreme. Silly China Rose runs off with Justin, but that seemed out of the blue to me. There were even hints that maybe Justin wasn't actually related to Ranulf and Eugene, but that thread was never followed.

I just never got into it - I found all three brothers pretty unlikeable and China herself paled in comparison to Canham's other heroines. blah. But I didn't dislike it, so 3 stars it is.

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