Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Title: Chance the Winds of Fortune
Author: Laurie McBain
Publishing Date: 1980
Dante Leighton is the Captain of a cargo ship that sails from the Caribbean to the Carolinas. He won a map to a sunken Spanish ship in a card game. He is used to seeing treasure maps, but this time it appears to be the real thing. He crosses paths with Lady Rhea Claire Dominick when he finds her asleep in his cabin on his ship. She had been kidnapped from her family and shipped from London to the colonies to be sold as an indentured servant. Dante can’t just let her go because she has seen the map and he believes her to be a spy, not the daughter of a Duke as she claims.
Let me be frank. If I had not chosen this book as one for my fall book challenge, I never would have finished it. The biggest problem I had with the book is that Dante and Rhea don’t meet until page 281. Yes, that’s right page 281!!!! What kind of nonsense is this? The first part of the book is devoted to recapping everything that happened between Rhea’s parents. Apparently, they had a book. Sure enough, I look up the information and yes their book was Moonstruck Madness.
Okay, so for 27 pages we have Dante and Rhea interacting and it’s good. The book has finally grabbed my attention. Then what does the author go and do? Yep, you guessed it. She jumps back to Rhea’s family for another 60 pages. So out of a total of 500 pages, 340 of them are spent on other plot points not devoted to Rhea and Dante’s relationship. That is more than half of the book. How is this book even considered a romance? I know it is, just look at the cover.
Since Dante and Rhea were given so little time to develop their relationship I didn’t buy into their love for each other. It felt extremely rushed considering this book is 500 pages. Rhea was super sweet. Think Snow White with the dwarves. She is like that with Dante’s crew. She could do no wrong in anyone’s eyes. Dante is very hard to pin down. I don’t feel like I got to know him at all. The good news about this book is that for a bodice ripper, no bodices were harmed. Rhea is never raped by anyone, nor does Dante ever “forcibly seduce” her.