Most helpful positive review
A moving love story with adventure!
on December 5, 2002
This novel, the last of the "Silk" trilogy is a wonderful read. The main character, Ian Cameron,a British officer assigned to India, has been imprisoned and tortured in "The Black Well" in Arabia and recently freed by his sister and her husband. He returns to India a broken man, having lost his eye and his sexual function. To make matters worse, his fiancee has married another man. While in India, Ian learns from his brother that he has unexpectedly become the Baron Falkirk, and needs to return to Scotland. Still depressed, Ian remains in India to deliver a bible written by a Russian with whom he shared his imprisonment. The Russian was later executed, and Ian promised to give Pytor (the Russian) his bible to his niece, Laura (who is also in India). Ian finds Laura in her own private misery, having just lost her stepfather, and notices how she is averse to men being attracted to her. In a bold move, he tells her of his impotence and proposes a marriage of convenience without sexuality, but with fidelity. Laura agrees,although Ian is in the dark as to why she wants no part of sex.
What follows is their marriage, and journey through India to tie up loose ends. This novel has a lot of historical detail about India, the culture, and political problems along the Khyber Pass.
Laura and Ian find themselves in some Indian intrigue, as well as deciphering the coded secrets of the bible Pytor left behind. During this time, Ian finds his impotence was only temporary and now is in a bind. He is attracted to Laura but feels guilty about breaking his promise. Overall, the way they both come to terms with the sexuality issue is interesting and becomes romantic as they do fall in love.
One of MJP strongest suits is that she addresses issues atypical in the romance industry, such as depression and impotence. She is unafraid to push the boundaries of historical romance fiction. In my opinion, this puts her in class that is a cut above the usual.
Overall, this novel is very enjoyable. However, be prepared for lots of secondary Indian politics and intrigue.