Nom de Plume Rating: ★★★★★
Reading Time: 6 minutes
*FTC Disclaimer: I received a copy of Love’s Revenge from Roane Publishing in exchange for an honest review. I have in no way been influenced by the author and/or publisher’s generosity. You can’t fake these stars, baby!
Embittered by betrayal, Anne MacKay flees London for America, where she learns she’s pregnant with her abusive husband’s longed-for heir. In a society that doesn’t protect, or afford a well-to-do wife’s desire for divorce, Anne decides there is one way to exact revenge: deny the father any knowledge of his child.
Sought after by her husband’s henchmen, Anne travels by rail and horseback, far from civilization where silk and stays are worn, let alone thought of. Lies and deceit protect her identity for a time, allowing her to birth—and grow to love—the child who was supposed to be her vengeance.
With the help of her loyal and protective business partner, Jude Connagher, and the ranch hands in their Montana Territory valley, Anne attempts to rebuild her life under the shadow of her husband’s wrath.
One unwise decision lands Anne in her pursuers’ clutches, tearing her from the ranch, her child, and her growing love for the one man who could redeem her from bitterness. She’s left with no choice but to finally face her husband, knowing her freedom and life hang in the balance.
First Line: “A shiver raised the hairs on my neck. I glanced over my shoulder as a carriage clattered past on the brick cobblestones. Dozens of people meandered the Baltimore street, but only a gentleman on horseback paid me mind with a tip of his hat.”
Hot dayumm. Did you read that first line? Talk about infusing my bones with insecurity! Did I, too, look over my shoulder while reading that? Yes.
Ok. One of two things happen after I read a 5-star book:
- The book is just so FREAKING. FANTASTIC. that I can’t wait to plaster my incoherent thoughts on the inter-web.
- I have no clue what to write because the book is just so FREAKING. FANTASTIC!
Quite a juxtaposition, I am.
Here, we have a case of the 2’s. I read Love’s Revenge back in, what, March? I’ve bounced around trying to formulate my words, but, GAAAWD how do you explain your emotions when you don’t yet understand them?
Well let me tell you: I have been brooding and I am so ready to unleash my thoughts about this sweet tale of revenge. I have to admit, though, that I read Book 2 before reading Book 1. I know, it’s another bad habit I have – I have lots, see. Ain’t nothing wrong with working a series backwards! In fact, I really enjoy when an author can unintentionally write a standalone novel, and that’s exactly what we have here. Terri Rochenski is a literary genius.
On to the juju.
Our heroine, Anne, experiences terrible loss at the end of Book 1. Mr. Dreamy turns out to be Mr. NotSoDreamy and Anne escapes with their unborn child.
Now that we’re at Book 2, we’ve arrived at the S tage of revenge. Nobody loves revenge more than Nom de Freaking PAYBACK. And what’s the best way to get payback on an abusive and obsessive husband? Well, raising their child without him knowing, of course!
Keeping the child from [him] for all eternity would never be long enough to repay the heartache he had inflicted upon me. “I’ll relish every second, though.”
We are first introduced to Anne as she’s entering a pawn shop. She plans to sell some gifts her snake of a husband gave her. Traveling from London to ‘Muurica (Baltimore) she needs some cash!
If only her husband weren’t such a rake… and if only she weren’t being followed…
Mr. NotSoDreamy OF COURSE finds her. Creepy, right? But being the gentleman that he is *snort* he gives Anne three days to come home to London. YaaaOk. Three days is how long it takes me to perfect a manicure. Terri Rochenski has officially set the scene and Anne is the puppet – and punching bag – in an overall scheme of pride and obsession. Mr. SnakeInTheGrass only wants her back in London to save his image. Lady Luck is on Anne’s side, because three days is just long enough for her to escape (again) to the Wild West.
You know… Anne can only travel west so many times before she ends back up in London… the world just isn’t that big… just sayin’…
Luckily Anne has friends. Hopefully friends that will help her – friends that won’t get hurt. But let’s be honest: This is Terri Rochenski we’re talking about, people! SOMEONE is going to get hurt.
This book is indescribable. Terri Rochenski has a talent of sculpting settings unlike any other. I am engulfed in her words, swashing around like a drunk pirate (except NOT drunk because I’m allergic to alcohol) trying to re-learn my surroundings. I can just smell the cobblestone streets and the long wheat grass of the western world. Le sigh. Love’s Revenge took me to another place. Another time. Another love… 😏
And of course there is love! Anne finds a hope of romance while roaming amongst the wild western boys. Side note: Connagher is quite the handsome specimen, my friends. Anne learns to forgive the past and tries to love again.
I was unable to return Connagher’s love, and I hated the man who had made me so… he loved my son as his own.
Ok so she SEVERELY struggles while she tries to love again, with her cynical view and bitter outlook on relationships. Baby steps are good.
My favorite part of Love’s Revenge is the characters. I feel like I’m traveling the world when I read Terri Rochenski’s work. The tone shifts, the characters’ mannerisms change, everything begins as an array of colors and slowly – delectably – focuses into a sorbent, vicious beam of white light. Unfortunately this toxic ray is aimed right at Anne’s heart and she, yet again, has to make a decision.
DON’T RUN AGAIN! Or maybe she should run. But now it’s not just her own life in trouble. It’s her child, her totally saucy rouge of a potential man-love, and the people who helped protect her.
Sacrifice? Or be sacrificed?