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I Belong


Review: Entwined by Kristen Callihan

EntwinedTitleEntwined

Author: Kristen Callihan

Genre: Paranormal Romance/Historical

Series: Darkest London (Novella 3.5)

Publication Date: November 5, 2013

Format: eBook, 120 Pages

ISBN-10: 1455577774 (Forever/Hachette)

ISBN-13: 978-1455577774 (Forever/Hachette)

Reviewed by: Kristie

Synopsis:

Eamon Evernight has always lived in his older brother’s shadow. While his brother is fair of hair and lithe in body, Eamon sparks fear with his fiery locks and massive frame-and rumors of a mysterious power. But when his brother has the good fortune to be betrothed to a beautiful stranger, it’s Eamon’s help-and quick wit and romantic heart–that he needs. Eamon agrees to write the noble lady…a generous offer that will forever leave him a changed man.

Lady Luella Jane Moran has no interest in an arranged marriage and tries valiantly to dissuade her betrothed from afar. Though her own letters plainly state her case, the words her husband-to-be writes her leave her aching for his touch. Will Lu give in to the desire the missives have kindled within her? Or will desire turn cold when she discovers their true author?

Quick & Dirty: A dark and emotional novella filled with secrets and the awkwardness of young love.

Opening Sentence: “ ‘Dear Sir, it has come to my attention, by way of a most distressing yet undeniable order, that we are to be married. As I find arranged marriages to be both archaic and tantamount to a glorified stud service—’ ”

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Entwined is a novella set in the Darkest London series. This series is a mixture of steampunk and paranormal in a hidden underworld of London, although, the events in Entwined do not take place in London but in Ireland. Entwined is set quite a few years before the main story arc, about forty years before. Young Aiden Evernight has been betrothed to young Lady Luella Jane Moran in an arranged marriage by his father. As a dutiful young man about to be in charge of an estate, Aiden agrees to the marriage but he doesn’t really want to do it. He enlists his brother Eamon’s help in corresponding with Luella. Eamon takes over the correspondence and quickly finds that he really likes Luella. Eventually, he falls in love with her but knows that when she finally arrives for her marriage that he will have to give her up to his brother.

The years pass and due to a series of unfortunate events Luella finds herself traveling to Evernight Hall months before her wedding to Aiden is to take place. Eamon thought he kept his feelings for Luella a secret but it doesn’t take Aiden long to figure out that having Eamon write those letters was a mistake. Soon enough the terrible consequences and crazy secrets are revealed in Entwined.

Entwined is a novella so it makes it a fairly quick read. The events are played out pretty quickly so there isn’t much filler. The story goes as expected with the relationship but it is how the story is played out that make this a part of a great series. I really feel the emotion and the heartbreak that the characters go through. I’m really amazed at some of the secrets because they don’t go where I thought they would. It makes the character reveals even more entertaining. Another aspect that I really liked about this book was about how naïve they were when it comes to sex and relationships. They believed the little lessons that they had been taught in childhood but when they let their emotions flow freely they really learn each other’s pleasures.

Overall, Entwined is a dark and emotional short story. Since this story is set years before the main storyline, it could be read as a standalone. There is something that will connect the stories in the end but it is not necessary to know. I highly recommend giving this series a try, start with this novella and see if you like it and then go back and read the rest of the series so far.

Notable Scene:

Bile surged up her throat at the memory. The screams, both of horses and of people. The sight of the carriage dashed upon the rocks, and in an instant, of the sea sweeping all sign of it away. Grief and fear threatened to crush her just then. She ought to be dead as well. Only she’d gotten out before the horses spooked. Having an indelicate yet undeniable need to relieve her bladder had saved her. And her bloody umbrella. The one she had insisted upon taking with her to use as a privacy shield.

A mad laugh escaped her. Not at all a bad omen, this. She swallowed hard. She’d seen too much death of late. As if it haunted her.

Perhaps it did. She ought to have died of cholera too. No. She wouldn’t think about it. Later she could cry for those lost. Ahead lay her future. All she had to do was claim it. To claim Aidan.

All she had to do was move. In the direction of the house. And yet she remained riveted to this bit of halfway earth. When really, she needed to be all in.

He was waiting for his bride. To be his bride was a notion that had, at first, struck fear into her heart and then become the only thing to keep her going. Years, she’d written to him. Fallen in love with him over parchment, ink, and quill. Horribly, the reality of actually meeting him was not the stuff of rainbows and chirping birds. But one of terror. She wanted this so badly it made her teeth hurt and her bones thrum.

Yet what right had she to pursue happiness when she lived a life of smoke and mirrors? Her family had died, a coach lay at the bottom of the sea, and she only here by providence.

Darkest London:

0.5 Ember

1. Firelight

2. Moonglow

3. Winterblaze

3.5 Entwined

4. Shadowdance

5. Evernight (August 26, 2014)

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FTC Advisory: Forever/Hachette Book Group provided me with a copy of Entwined. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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