Tuesday, 27 December 2011

My Ruthless Prince by Gaelen Foley

3 Stars (historical romance)
ARC provided by Netgalley

release date: Tuesday, December 27th, 2011 by Avon
Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages

Started out really well, the friends to lovers trope is my absolute favourite, but about half way the premise got a bit windy and the romance a bit too sugary for my taste. Things started to fall too easily into place.

I haven't read many of Gaelen Foley's books. I think I read two in the Knight's Miscellany series. When I first read the premise for this book, the fourth in the Inferno Club series of which I have read none, I was immediately pulled in by the friends to lovers premise. Its always been one of my favourites, so much potential for great tension and awkward, charged moments as the friends slowly realize they love each other more deeply than a simple friendship goes. When done well, the friends to lovers trope can make for an absolutely delightful romance novel. I have to say that at first I was thrilled with this book for just that reason, it seemed that Foley was taking my favourite trope and executing it perfectly. Emily and Drake have been the best of friends since childhood, and when I say the best of friends I mean it and as a reader you feel their devotion to one another. Emily was the gamekeeper's daughter, Drake a noble earl, their friendship tolerated but never approved by his family. As they grew older and it became clear that at least on Emily's side, feelings had progressed, Drake's mother became involved and insisted that nothing would ever come of their friendship - Drake would never be allowed to marry Emily.

Well, the whole forbidden love bit only added to the tension of this relationship. The book drives readers into the plot from the first page where Emily is being chased through the woods by Drake, who has returned to The Promethians - a rebel group bent of world domination of some sort and the enemies of England and The Order, a secret band of noble soldiers fighting for England in secret, a band of which Drake was a part before he was taken prisoner (I assume in the previous book) and brainwashed into following the enemy. Emily, always blindly devoted to Drake, risking all for the love she has for her friend has followed him back to The Promethians in order to get him back to England and reclaim the man he once was.

So we have the set up for a great plot and romance. It started out well, the tension was there, the intrigue and readers wonder if Drake really has been turned or if it's all a ruse, the will they won't they factor. Everything was chugging along nicely, but as the book progressed and it became obvious that some secrets had to be revealed I found that the tension lost its edge and the relationship between Drake and Emily turned too easily. While before Drake was playing hard ball - he all of a sudden started to give into Emily, trying to charm and seduce her. Emily of course was at once hard nosed in her determination to get her Drake back, while also falling into his embrace - duh because she loves him so dearly.

While I really did like both of these characters, they were sincere and sweet and very loving with each other, I though that Foley could have made more of the situation they were in, she could have prolonged the will they won't they bit and also prolonged the tension by making Emily wonder longer if Drake really had gone rogue, or if was working at some other cause. I think things became too easy between them too quickly and once this happened I got a little bored and the details started to bog me down.

Once they reconciled their positions with each other it was like nothing was left but to deal with the action plot - The Promethians vs. The Order plot. Because I didn't read the others in this series, the action side of the story was a bit hard for me to understand. I followed it all, but I wasn't invested in what Drake was fighting for, I wasn't really clear on who the players were or what the danger was - only that there were good guys and bad guys and the bad guys threatened England and had to be stopped.

The love scene when it came was rushed and kind of odd in a way. For all of the tenderness between Drake and Emily I thought that their time together could have been handled differently. A little disappointing.

The tension did pick up again about a quarter from the end, but then it slowed again like it had before and again I felt that the resolution was a bit rushed.

Overall, not a bad read. I would recommend it for sure to fans of the series who have read all 3 books that come before this one. The friends to lovers theme started out well but lost something along the way, but for those who enjoy this trope like I do, the book would be worth checking out.

For me, this one was a 3 star read, definitely in this case I would recommend reading the series in order! There are definitely moments between Drake and Emily I think I missed in book 3.

1 comment:

  1. A great read,after reading the first 3 books and enjoyed everyone, I knew that I would be in for a twist turning adventure with, "My Ruthless Prince" I didn't want the book to end,Gaelen knows how to hold a readers attention to the full. I canot speak highly enough about her writting and cannot wait for her next book to be published. I give the Book 5 stars