Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Loving a Lost Lord is a historical romance by Mary Jo Putney that appears to be the result of a bar bet about hitting the most romance tropes in a single volume. It sets up a series (there are a bunch of boys all raised by the same time-traveling, progressive aristocrat in her anachronistic school). There is amnesia. There are wastrel sons who race to Gretna Green and are cut off from their families. There are scheming relatives. There are attractive half-breeds (both Roma and Indian) who face unfair discrimination. There are mothers thought to be dead who miraculously appear, assassins shooting from trees at people galloping horses early in the morning (before the ton come out). There are rough-hewn valets devoted to their employers.
Despite the bingo game of cliches, the story itself is nicely told. Mariah and Adam's relationship grows slowly, halted by the lies Mariah tells and Adam's slow recovery from amnesia. As in many of Putney's books, their emotions are drawn a bit clinically, pressing in the idea that the book is written from a modern perspective. The end triggers a cascade of coincidences, so many that I passed through grumpiness to giggles. Fun for fans of Putney, but I don't recommend it as a starting point. C+