Saturday, September 15, 2012

Review: It Begins with a Kiss by Eileen Dreyer (e-short story)

Fiona MacDonald needs to escape from Miss Chase's Finishing School (aka Last Chance Academy) -- not because of the harsh punishments the school doles out to erring students and not because they are usually locked up and starved in a cold attic when they misbehave, but because she believes she must save her twin sister Mairead in Scotland.

But her escape has already been foiled once before -- so now she must rely on her best friend's unreliable older brother to assist her.

Alex Knight isn't there because her sister asked her to, but because he's been tasked by the agency to look after Fiona MacDonald, Ian's younger sister -- but a simple mission becomes complicated when Alex acts on his attraction to Fiona.

I'm a big fan of Eileen Dreyer's Drake's Rakes series and this story/sample does a great job of teasing the readers with information about the next set of books in the series. I wish the books were coming out sooner rather than later -- I would love to find out what happens to Alex and Fiona and the rest of the ladies from Last Chance Academy.

Pippin Knight (Alex's sister), Sarah, Tregallan, Lizzie Ripton and Fiona MacDonald (Ian's sister) -- normally, readers would comment on the chemistry between the hero and heroine (which there is) -- but, in this case, the chemistry of these friends shines through -- very distinct personalities and voices.

Fiona sank back down to sit on her bed. "Poor Lizzie," she said. "No more midnight picnics."

Pip grinned. "Or kitchen raids."

"Skinny-dipping," Sarah said, her eyes bright with unshed tears.

"Excursions to see the gypsies."

"Hiring fairs."

Sarah actually laughed. "We were lucky we escaped that mess," she said, grinning at Pip. "You almost went for a scullery maid."

"I would have made a brilliant scullery maid," Pip defended herself.
- pp. 11-12

Then there's Alex -- I wanted to hit him in the head for being so clueless about his sister's situation at the school -- but, one can see that Pip's revelation about the school genuinely surprised him and now he's determined to make things right.

All in all, this short read was a great transition between the first three books (The Three Graces) and this next set of three (Last Chance Academy). The first book, Once a Rogue (Ian's story), and the second book, Two Times a Lady (Alex and Chuffy's story), will be released in 2013.

To find out more about Eileen Dreyer and her books, visit her website. She's also on Facebook.

Final note: My favorite exchange between Alex and Fiona:

"You seem to have run afoul of the landscape, Miss Ferguson."

"You seem to have mastered a grasp of the obvious, Mr. Knight."
- pp. 28



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