Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Review of The Salt Hendon Collection by Lucinda Brant

Book 1 - Salt Bride

Lucinda Brant is a new author that was recommended by my friends in the UK.  This is the first audiobook that I have listened to.  There are benefits to listening to a book that I never thought of. I enjoy reading, it is my escape from everyday life.  The first benefit is the narrator Alex Wyndham.   He has a dreamy, sexy voice that brings Salt to life.  The second benefit is hearing the correct pronunciation of words that I have been mispronouncing for quite a few years.  Thank you, Alex.

Now on to the to this amazing collection from Lucinda.  These stories are stunning in the scope of how different they are from most fiction due to the fact that the stories are so historically accurate in every way.  From the language, the clothing, the idiosyncrasies of the characters, and most of all because Lucinda writes a truly astonishing story of betrayal and vengeance that shows that truth, trust, and love are the foundation of a Happily Ever After.

Salt and Jane are great, well-developed characters that make these stories so compelling and enjoyable.
Lucinda's writing is deeply emotional with heart-stopping peril, drama and a truly evil villain.

Magnus, Earl of Salt Hendon is a powerful nobleman that has the respect of his peers and enemies alike. He wields his power with fairness to those who deserve it and strikes fear into those who oppose him.  He is a Gentleman to his core and his word is sacrosanct.  He is devoted to his family and will protect them with his life.

The only person who has ever made him judge his actions and feelings is the beautiful Miss Jane Despard.  Jane is a young lady that has a deep moral compass, she always tries to tell the truth and goes out of her way to believe the best in people, even when the evidence in front of her says otherwise.  She is deeply shocked when her guardian's will is read.  She has to marry Salt, to save her brother's inheritance.  She and Salt had a relationship that did not end well for either of them.  She will not put her brother's future in jeopardy so she agrees.

Years ago they met at the Salt Hunt and spent a lot of time getting to know each other.  On a wonderful, beautiful night they consummated their love.  Salt asked her to marry, they were really in love and wanted to spend the rest of their lives together.  Only something went wrong and she never heard from him after she left to go home.  She discovered that she was pregnant and wrote to Salt.  This is where the story gets tragic.  The letter is intercepted and the actions of Lady Diana St. John, the widow of Salt's best friend cause Jane to lose the child.

Salt doesn't know what happened to Jane years ago.  He believes she betrayed him, but he gave his word and he will honor the betrothal that was arranged years ago.  He wants nothing to do with Jane and tries to get her to break the betrothal.  Jane cannot and they marry.

No one knows that Lady Diana is mentally ill.  Her single focus is making Salt fall in love with her and becoming the Treasury Secretary and maybe someday Prime Minister.  She is truly unhinged and will kill anyone who gets in her way.  Including constantly making her son sick to get Salt's attention.  Salt is the boy's legal guardian.

As Salt and Jane's feelings start to return,  Diana will do anything to get rid of Jane.  Her brother Sir Anthony begins to see his sister for what she is, a monster who has feels no guilt or remorse.  Salt and Jane finally talk to each other and find out what really happened years ago and how Diana was responsible for all the grief and heartache they had suffered.  They never stopped loving each other.

When Salt finds out the things that Diana has done and still doing, he, Jane, and Sir Anthony confront her.  She is locked away far away for her own good and Jane and Magnus finally are together and expecting a baby. 

I admit that I cried while reading this story.  I am inspired and will be listening to more of Lucinda Brant's books with Alex Wyndham narrating.

Book 2 - Salt Redux

This story begins where Salt Bride left off.  This is something new for me also.  Usually, the Villian of the first book in the Series gets what is coming to him or her and you never hear from them again.  Not in this Series.  Lady Diana St John is back and more evil and unbalanced than ever.

In Salt Bride, you meet Salt's younger sister Caroline and Sir Anthony Templestowe.  They have known each other since they were very young.  They have been in love forever, but Anthony made a terrible mistake and was banished from England to remote Russia as a Diplomat.  Caroline is despondent and gives her virginity away on a whim to a rake.  She is blackmailed and forced to marry the blackmailer.  So sets the stage for their love story.

Anthony is in Russia when he receives a letter advising him that his sister has escaped her imprisonment and is bent on killing Jane and her children and finally get Salt for herself.  Anthony rushes back to England to stop his sister once and for all.  When he finds out that his love, Caroline is now a widow he immediately proposes.  Caroline is ashamed of her actions since Anthony was banished to Russia.  She wants to marry him but is afraid that if he finds out what led to her marriage that he will not want her.  Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Anthony plans a scheme that will take care of his sister for good.  He cannot kill her, she is after all family.  He arranges to send her to Siberia in Russia where she will spend the rest of her life paying for her sins.  Something goes wrong.  Anthony saves Jane and Salt's children but in the process, Diana is killed in a really gruesome way.

Anthony and Caroline get married and everyone lives happily ever after.  I really loved his book as well.  I especially loved all the witty dialogue from the children in this book.  I giggled a great deal while reading.    I highly recommend this book also.

Book l3 - Chrismas Angel (Novella)

This is the love story of Kitty Aldershot, Caroline's sister-in-law whom Salt takes into his home and Tom Allenby, Jane's brother.  A sweet romance with a sassy and sweet young lady and a nice, steady young man.  It takes place at Christmas where all the family is together for the holidays.  The Christmas Angel title comes from Salt's son Ned calling Kitty The Christmas Angel. Tom and Kitty also get their HAE.

In conclusion this is an amazing collection that was really a first for me in more ways than one and I will defintitely be listening to more of Lucinda's books.  A special thanks to Wendy Loveridge and Carol Cork for introducing me to this wonderful author.

1 comment:

  1. Jaci, I'm delighted that you loved this box set and superb narration by Alex Wyndham. 😊