Book Review: My Fair Concubine
By: Jeannie Lin
Harlequin Historicals June 2012
Genre: Historical Romance
4 Heart Review
My Fair Concubine Blurb:
The Nobleman Who Turned A Tea Girl Into A Princess...
Yan Ling tries hard to be servile - it's what's expected of a girl of her class. Being intelligent and strong-minded, she finds it a constant battle.
Proud Fei Long is unimpressed by her spirit - until he realizes she's the answer to his problems. He has to deliver the emperor a "princess." In two months can he train a tea girl to pass as a noblewoman?
Yet it's hard to teach good etiquette when all Fei Ling wants to do is break it, by taking this tea girl for his own...
This book is a historical set during the Chinese Tang Dynasty and that alone was enough to tempt me to read it. The fact that it was written by Jeannie Lin made me want to put it at the top of my TBR pile. Oh, and it didn't hurt that the cover is stunning!
I absolutely ADORE that Harlequin has published historicals not just set in England or about the Ton. I mean there's a world full of history and I'm fascinated by Chinese history. I hope readers will support these books to show Harlequin that we want more unique settings in our historical romances!
I loved that this story takes place over a few months time. In category, very often the romance is fast and furious and with few additional characters. My Fair Concubine not only lets the characters develop, but the were a handful of very well developed and interesting side characters that added a richness to the story and I'm hoping that we will see a few of them in future books.
In addition to the longer romantic timeline, I felt that Lin did an outstanding job of letting the feelings between the hero and heroine build internally before letting them show their feelings externally. In fact, the hero Fei Long stays so true to his sense of honor that once he finally reveals his feelings to himself and Yan Ling, the reader will be swept along in the emotion.
As much as I appreciated that level of layered writing, I somehow was left wishing for a little more interaction between Yan Ling and Fei Long. a few more scenes of them spending time together, and not just quietly being in a room together, would have taken the story to the next level for me. That's not to say that I didn't appreciate how the tension built in those quiet moments.
If you are a fan of historical romances I highly recommend not only this book, but also Jeannie's previous Tang Dynasty books. I'd love to see more readers helping to support more diversity in settings and heroes and heroines.
Enter to win an autographed copy of My Fair Concubine!
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