Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Falcon And The Flower by Virginia Henley

The Falcon And The Flower
Virginia Henley
Medieval Romance, 470 pages

Read For:
Historical Fiction Challenge
ROR Summer Challenge
RYOB Challenge
What's In A Name Challenge 3

Promised to him in marriage, she vowed not to surrender her body or her soul.


Astride her white palfrey, surrounded by a nimbus of silver-blonde hair, Jasmine was a vision to strike a man mute with desire. But the violet-eyed love child of King Richard's half brother had vowed that no man would ever rule her heart. Until she saw the face of the Devil himself in her crystal ball -- the dark, brooding knight who would kill to make her his own. She would risk a dissolute court and a maddened, lustful king to keep destiny at bay, anything to keep her from the hypnotic eyes and burning caresses of... THE FALCON


A wickedly handsome warrior who lived by blood and the sword, Falcon de Burgh wanted to wed no woman -- until he laid eyes on the exquisite Jasmine, and he vowed to possess her, to teach her all the wondrous ways a man could love a woman, no matter what it might take to conquer her fiery, unyielding heart. Falcon knew only blind, reckless passion as he swore to tame, at the risk of his life... THE FLOWER.

My Review:

A great old school"bodice ripper" 80's historical romance. The hero, Falcon, is way alpha male and the heroine, Jasmine, is pretty much a stubborn twit who continually gets into scrapes that the hero must rescue her from. All that being said-the back story of King John and the machinations of his court were such that the book was still quite enjoyable.

This book would have been 5 stars if not for the stupidity, stubbornness, and just plain bit@hiness of the heroine. The book constantly goes on about her "exquisite, flaxen beauty" and the heroine uses that to manipulate most around her. The most unusual, and implausible thing, is that, even though Jasmine is supposedly a skilled white witch, she has virtually no knowledge of the marriage act and is literally terrified of bedroom relations for over two thirds of the book? She actually cringes when the hero touches her! The hero is crazy about her but at several points he wonders why he puts up with her abuse.

 And yes-he does strike her a couple of times in the book-after her selfish antics put many others in jeopardy and in one instance almost get a man killed. While I don't at all support violence-this heroine was SOO selfish and mean spirited she almost makes ME want to slap her-LOL!

 I give props to Virginia Henley's writing that she can make two leads who are VERY unlikable but still weave an interesting story in spite of them. This is my first Virginia Henley and I hope that most of her heroines are not dingbats like Jasmine, if so I'll skip those books as she is cringe worthy.

3.5 stars.

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