Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Review: "The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie" by Jennifer Ashley

The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie (Highland Pleasures, #1)The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Almost everyone who's read this book loved it to pieces, so my expectations were pretty high when I started it. High expectations can be a blessing... or a curse. Now that I finished this read, I can't help wondering what is "wrong" with me because, I'm sorry to say, I don't understand what all the fuss is about.

I liked Ms. Ashley's writing - this was my 1st book by her - and I thought the premise - the hero is "mad" - was interesting and unique, but the romance didn't work for me. Lust was very well depicted and the sex scenes were steamy hot, but love was nowhere in sight, IMHO. How can you fall in love with someone you only meet between the sheets? Ian and Beth had barely exchanged a few conversations before they found themselves in love with each other, and that pattern didn't change after they got married. I had a hard time buying their love - especially because I was constantly reminded that Ian didn't understand what Beth said half the time. He became completely obsessed devoted to her from the moment they met and I can go along with that - hey, I have bought that scenario in several books before and I will keep doing that, no doubt about it - but I need to feel that special connection between the H/h. Sadly, I didn't feel that with Ian and Beth.

Halfway through the book, the story took a turn and the romance was left aside to give space to a convoluted murder mystery. I won't go into details here because I don't want to give any spoilers away, but the "investigation" conducted by Beth was silly. I can't understand how she just solved something that Hart (Ian's older brother) and the Scotland Yard itself had failed for 5 years! Super Woman, thy name is Beth.

That 2nd half of the story annoyed me and made me drop my rating to 3 stars. I still needed Ian and Beth to convince me they were in love, but I had to content myself with pages and pages of Beth digging into the Mackenzies' past and working on solving the murder mystery.

Another "problem" I had with this book is, it screamed "First Book in the Series". Ian's brothers - all future heroes in the series, I'm sure - and their problems were featured in detail, taking my attention away from Ian and Beth.

All in all, this wasn't an altogether bad read to me. I really enjoyed the 1st half of the story, when Ms. Ashely was still developing Ian and Beth's relationship. But then, wham! They were in love and I didn't know how that had happened. Oh well...

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