The three most important parts of a book are: a well constructed plot, compelling characters, and a satisfying conclusion.

Monday, December 2, 2013

MISTRESS OF RAGHERY by Raine English

Mistress of Raghery by Raine EnglishPublisher:  Elusive Dreams Press
Release Date:  October 27, 2013
Pages:  232

About the Book:  A Gothic romance set in the Victorian era.

On a storm-shrouded island, ghosts of the past threaten to kill again.

Sheeva Desmond always believed she’d marry for love. But when she’s left penniless after her parents’ deaths and her fiancĂ© cancels their wedding, she’s convinced love is a fairy tale. Desperate to find a way to support herself, she takes a position as governess to a troubled mute boy. She never expects to lose her heart to the boy’s handsome father. Or to become entangled in a deadly mystery.

Ronan Quinn, Master of Rathlin Island, spent years in an unhappy marriage. When his faithless wife threatens to leave him and is later found dead, he blames himself for not keeping her safe. He’s left with a hardened heart and a devastated young son. The beautiful governess he hires may have the courage to help his son and to heal Ronan’s soul. But a murderer from his past haunts the shadows and threatens them all.

Warning: Mistress of Raghery contains restless ghosts, misty cliffs, mysterious smugglers and a woman who will challenge them all to win the heart of the man she loves.

Wanda's Review:  Mistress of Raghery is an eerie Gothic novel set in the Victorian era on Rathlin Island, where there are rumors of ghosts and gossip of murder. It is an island laced with secrets. It was a chore having to sail for hours to reach civilization. For years, Rathlin had been plagued by smugglers. The shores of this rocky Island had been used to bring in whiskey and lace from Scotland. 

Sheeva Desmond's life had crumbled. She had been played a fool by Cedric, who called off their wedding one hour before they were to be married. It seemed her hope for the future was gone. All she ever wanted was to have a marriage built on love, just as her parents had. Her parents' deaths and Cedric's rejection of her had changed her life completely. 

Ronan Quinn was never able to free himself from the demons that haunted him. Six years had done little to soften the blow of his wife Catherine's death. He still had a cold, hollow feeling inside. Ronan rescued Sheeva after she'd hit her head on a rock, trying to avoid his carriage. Ronan takes her to Lady Kintara's estate for medical attention. He feels responsible for Sheeva's well being and at the suggestion of Lady Kintara, he takes her on as a governess for his son, Irial, who has not spoken since his mother's death.  He lives in his own silent world.  There is an immediate attraction between Sheeva and Ronan, but he'd been deceived by a woman's beauty once before and he'd not make that mistake ever again. The common denominator between Sheeva and Ronan was that they both had lost a loved one. 

Sheeva agrees to accept the position of governess for a period of six months. She is in need of money and the job pays well and it is a respectable position. She travels with Ronan to Rathlin Island to become the new governess for his son.  And the story unfolds ---

The ghost of Catherine is often seen walking the ridge. What really happened on that ridge? Could Ronan have murdered his wife? Sheeva has so many unanswered questions and is determined to discover the cause of Catherine's death and win the trust and love of Irial.

This book was well written with its lush descriptions of scenery, while spinning a tale of mystery and romance. The entourage of fascinating characters kept you guessing about their true demeanors right up through the end with a crescendo of suspense all the way through. A great read that I highly recommend! 4.5 stars.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley to read and review. All opinions shared are my own. 

Raine EnglishThe Author:  Raine English
Raine English is an award-winning author of contemporary and historical romances infused with magic and the paranormal. She lives in New England with her family, two dogs, and a mischievous cat. She can be found on the web at www.RaineEnglish.com.