When Passion Rules Author:Johanna Lindsey Assassin Leonard Kastner agrees to commit an abhorrent crime for an astronomical sum – kill the infant heir to the European kingdom of Lubinia. Just as he is about to carry out the heinous deed, the baby awakens…and smiles at him. Losing his heart to tiny Alana Stindal, Leonard sweeps her out of their homeland to safety in England w... more »here he conceals her true identity from her and gives her an education fit for a queen.
Eighteen years later, when the king of Lubinia faces a revolt because he has not produced another legitimate heir, Leonard knows he must take Alana home to prevent a civil war. But at the Lubinian palace no one believes Alana is the missing princess. Christoph Becker, the captain of the palace guards, arrests Alana because he suspects she is a pretender or a seductive assassin. When the king recognizes Alana as his long-lost daughter he proudly betroths her to the one man he believes is capable of protecting her and eliminating the shadowy figures who are determined to destroy his dynasty – Christoph Becker.« less
I am disappointed to report that this was probably my last Johanna Lindsey book. Considering I have read most of her books, this is truly a sad turn of events.
I have so many complaints that I will try to be concise. My guess is that this book was probably originally written in the mid-80's when Johanna was cranking out the bodice rippers that made her famous. Long-time fans will recognize several tired cliches and themes that were so prevalent in those days. However, readers have moved on and unfortunately Johanna has not.
FIRST: we have a made-up eastern European country.
SECOND: a long-lost princess (stolen as a baby).
THIRD: the young, handsome and arrogant Captain of the Guard disbelieves her incredible story and imprisons her. (And yes, she must have called him "barbarian" at least 40 times!)
FOURTH: he carelessly takes her virginity (and strangely there was virtually no mention of that at all until the end of the book)
FIFTH: she's so darned cold and the only solution anyone can come up with is for him to strip naked and snuggle with her
SIXTH: the MOST OBVIOUS VILLAIN in the whole wide world. So obvious, in fact, that there should have been no way that person was ever in a place of trust to begin with.
SEVENTH: unsatisfying sex scenes. These can sometimes be so hot and steamy that they offset a ho-hum story. That is not the case in this book.
In my opinion, Ms. Lindsey should have left this leftover draft on the shelf.
Story: 1 star
Romance: 1 star
Edited to Add: Almost forgot the ONE redeeming quality of this book! The cover image features a masculine hottie that is bound to inspire a bit of drooling. LOL
Perhaps it is just that my reading tastes have changed over time, but I've been a big Lindsey fan and was disappointed in this one. Much was made of the princess' education and weapon's training but when confronted, she simply hands over her arsenal. I found her complete innocence, the made up country, the mistaken identity plot line, and her calling the hero a barbarian repeatedly irritating rather than romantic.
Sorry, guys; I can't agree. I have read every single one of Ms. Lindsey's books, & enjoyed them all, but this is absolutely horrible - the worst she has ever written. It reads like a middle-school storybook - just too preposterous to be true. I tried - I really did - to like it, but it too closely resembles Aesops'Fables, or fractured fairy tales, or some such nonsence. Pass on this one.