Friday, May 24, 2013

Review - Cliff of the Ruin by Bonnie McKernan

Cliff of the RuinTitle: Cliff of the Ruin
Author: Bonnie McKernan
Series: Stand Alone
Pages: 416
Published: November 20th 2012 by Abbott Press 
ISBN: 9781458206701
Source: Sent for Honest Review

Description: There are three good reasons why dashing Civil War hero and New York lawyer William Teague cannot tell artist Mae Kendrick he's in love with her. One, she told him he was dull. Two, she is the niece of an important client. Three, she just hired him to find the man she doesn't remember marrying. As Will manages this peculiar case, the search for Mae's husband unveils a shocking discovery about her childhood, one that shifts the investigation to the place of her birth--Ireland. But on the voyage overseas, circumstances become increasingly bizarre. Mae suffers ghost-like visions and further memory loss, and Will is seduced by a beautiful stranger who just might be trying to kill him. When Mae suddenly vanishes like her husband, Will is forced to enter a thin place, an ancient monastic ruin leading to Ireland's Celtic otherworld, in what becomes a race against time to find her. But are Will's war-honed instincts any match for the alluring forces of Irish legend? Can he distinguish friend from foe? Can he protect Mae from the apparitions of her past? And how far beyond the breaking point can his secret love be tested.

I Give This ...


I was really excited for this book.  The setting of America, Ireland, and add in a touch of folklore just sounded so promising.  I'm happy to say this was a fantastic book.

I wasn't sure what to think of Mae at first.  When we are first introduced to her to her she's an aging spinster with very little hope of marrying.  I always find that intriguing and wanting to know circumstances indicating why. When she meets Will, I knew we had a potential match but that it was only a portion of the story.  When we learn that she basically disappears off the map and eloping, it seems completely out of character.  She returns weeks later with no real recollection of what has happened.  The few pieces of information Will manages to get indicate that her husband has returned to Ireland...back the the place of her birth that her father that wants nothing to do with her.

At this point certain Irish folklore are introduced.  I don't know much about this area, but I enjoyed the stories mentioned a lot.  I liked how they are worked into the story as such a seamless chain of events.  The mythical characters feel very real.  They have certain powers that they can wield over humans which were interesting to read about.  

I particularly enjoyed the connection between Mae's new husband and her father.  I hadn't imagined there would be one at first, but once it starts to play out it wasn't hard to figure out who was who.  Sometimes revenge is sweet.  I enjoyed how the story takes us to another realm of beings.

I really enjoyed the combination of historical fiction mixed in with traditional folklore and a little bit of fantasy.  I'll be looking for other works by this author!


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