Saturday, June 25, 2016

THE BEAUTIFUL PRETENDER by Melanie Dickerson

After inheriting his title from his brother, the margrave has two weeks to find a noble bride. What will happen when he learns he has fallen for a lovely servant girl in disguise?
The Margrave of Thornbeck has to find a bride, fast. He invites ten noble born ladies who meet the king’s approval to be his guests at Thornbeck Castle for two weeks, a time to test these ladies and reveal their true character.
Avelina has only two instructions: keep her true identity a secret and make sure the margrave doesn’t select her as his bride. Since the latter seems unlikely, she concentrates on not getting caught. No one must know she is merely a maidservant, sent by the Earl of Plimmwald to stand in for his daughter, Dorothea.
Despite Avelina’s best attempts at diverting attention from herself, the margrave has taken notice. And try as she might, she can’t deny her own growing feelings. But something else is afoot in the castle. Something sinister that could have far worse—far deadlier—consequences.

Opinion:

Avelina is a lady's maid to the daughter of an Earl, but when she aids in her lady's elopement with a knight, she finds herself in a most precarious situation. The Margrave of the region is looking for a bride and thus he invited ten young eligible women, the Earl's daughter was to be one. With his daughter missing, the Earl insists Avelina take his daughter's place and ensure the Margrave does not choose her. And this is the premise of this historical fairy tale. Of course, the Margrave is drawn to Avelina despite her attempts to thwart his attention, making for good conflict. 

The author, Melanie Dickerson, is known for her medieval fairy tales. This is the first book of hers that I have read, irresistibly drawn to it because of the striking cover. The pace of the story really picked up in the second half, as did the romance and the accumulation of conflict.

This is pure escape fiction - a charming love story in the time of princes and princes and courtly love. Very enjoyable; light and airy too!

Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for visiting my blog, http://greathistoricals.blogspot.ca, where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed! For fascinating women of history bios and women's fiction please visit http://www.historyandwomen.com.