Monday, April 30, 2018

Book Review: 'Mistress of Merrivale' by Shelley Munro


Jocelyn and Leo’s story is riveting from beginning to end. Not only does it have an enchanting love story, but the budding relationship is surrounded with mystery, murder, complicated in-laws, and conspiracy. This story truly has something for everyone and I just could not get enough of it.
Jocelyn’s background can be considered sketchy at best, but if you pull back the layers you see a woman who is a victim of circumstance trying to do the best for herself and her mother. Jocelyn took on the role of caretaker to her ailing mother at a young age, no matter the consequences to herself. This immediately made her character endearing to me. I can say that I wanted her to have a happy ending from beginning to end, and sometimes questioned if Leo was capable of giving that to her.
Leo is a man of mystery to say the least. His deceased wife met with an untimely death leaving him the sole caretaker for their daughter, and trying to find a suitable replacement. Jocelyn seemed to be a wife of convenience for him, since she had some of the traits his previous wife lacked such as discretion and loyalty. The author wrote his character as one of mystery in many ways and I never quite knew if Leo was the hero or the enemy. I found this entertaining and definitely added depth to the story. Even in the end I found myself questioning his integrity. One thing I did not question, however was his feelings towards Jocelyn. I could immediately tell he was smitten by her, even if he did not recognize his developing feelings towards her. This made me want him to be the good hearted man he tried to appear to be, because I knew if he was, he would be the man to care for sweet (but not so innocent) Jocelyn, which she needed and deserved.
This plot had more twists and turns than a windy road in the middle of the night. I can honestly say that the author surprised me with some of the angles of the story. This kept me enthralled the entire time, and wanting to find out more and more. I am new to author Shelley Munro’s work, but I can say that after reading this story, I would love to read more.

Editor's note: This article was originally published at Long and Short ReviewsIt has been republished with permission. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.