Tempted by Your Touch
Brides of the Bloodstone, Trilogy, No. 1
By Jen Holling
Sonnet Books (Simon & Schuster) - January 2002
ISBN: 0743438027 - Paperback
Historical Romance (touch of paranormal) - 1542, England & Scotland
Strong love scene

Reviewed by Brenda Weeaks, MyShelf.Com
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I have read Jen Holling's work before and come away a satisfied reader. I am happy to say her winning streak continues. This time she offers her fans the beginnings of a promising trilogy. In fact, the more involved I became in this story, the more anticipation grew in learning who the next bride will be.

It all begins in Annacreag Castle, Scotland, 1482 when two rival clans agree to peace through the wedding of a Maxwell and a Graham. Once the wedding takes place, a witch is to deliver the Bloodstone to the groom. The Bloodstone, a stone of protection, once rested in the saber of King Arthur's sword, Excalibur. The night ends in tragedy and the story jumps forward by 60 years to a different generation.

Ms. Holling is a masterful storyteller. In the prologue, she sets the story up perfectly. The readers learn instantly about the rival clans and the magical stone in a way that keeps the pages turning. The reader then moves to chapter one and two to meet up with the Graham and Maxwell families to see where they stand after 60 years.

Ridley Graham is forcing his sisters, Caroline and Fayth, into political marriages. Caroline is first. She is being sent to Robert Maxwell. Robert agreed to this marriage in order to save a relative. Caroline tries her best to escape the marriage by bargaining, but fate has other plans. A forced relationship between two strong characters turns into an entertaining adventure for their clansmen and the readers.

Slowly and methodically, the author reveals the clans' histories, secrets, and plans, taking the readers on a suspenseful journey that has only just begun with this first tale. It's a solid romance note worthy of attention. The storyline is well thought out. The characters are compelling and unique enough to make an avid romance reader seek them out in a future storyline. Can't wait to read number two in the trilogy.

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