BEA'S BOOK NOOK "I can't imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once." C. S. Lewis “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” ― Oscar Wilde

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

CarolKat Reviews Gargoyle: Three Enchanting Romance Novellas

Publisher: SB Group
Format Read: ebook
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: July 10, 2013
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository* | ARe* | Barnes & Noble
* affiliate links; the blog receives a small commission from purchases made through these links.

Blurb from goodreads:

The mysterious lives of gargoyles.
They don't just hang out on buildings.
They right wrongs. They wreak havoc.
And they change the lives of unsuspecting people who never see them coming.

The hero...
Craig knows that Bea is in trouble. But Craig can't do anything about it--because he's a garden gargoyle and Bea can't hear his warnings. When unexpected visitors arrive to help, Craig finds the power he had all along. Now the neighborhood will never be the same.

The touchstone...
When a thunderstorm transports software expert Rose Waldman to thirteenth century France, she meets hunky stonemason Julien, who is secretly creating a gargoyle in defiance of his master mason. Can independent gadget loving Rose trust her life and heart to Julien, and can she really never go home again?

And the freak just trying to get along...
Sentenced to burn at the stake for sorcery, Merofled volunteers to help jaded warrior Alaric kill a gargoyle that threatens her village. But Merofled soon discovers the gargoyle is not a monster at all. It's a misfit just like her. Can she persuade Alaric to spare the gargoyle-and herself?

CarolKat's Thoughts:

The first Novella in this collection is On a Wing and a Prayer by Kay Keppler.

This one was described as a Humorous Contemporary, however the human story entwined with the gargoyle was far from humorous.

Our hero is Craig a garden gargoyle couldn’t fly. He worries about his owner Beatrix because of her abusive relationship with boyfriend Jerry. Jerry is a corrupt lawyer who deals drugs, destroys her property and Craig considers him a threat to Bea.

After Bea throws him out, he breaks her grandmother’s clock and tosses Craig across the yard. This is the beginning of an intense abuse story and an interesting exchange between Craig and several Gods and Goddesses all with modernized names. I loved the heroism of Craig and the antics as he learned to fly to be able to protect Bea. Although billed as a romance we only get a hint of the start of a possible one.

This story was well edited and a delightful, if rather intense read.

The second Novella is Touchstone of Love by Beth Barany.

With the designation of Time Travel it does not disappoint.

Rose is a consultant for a top software company, traveling to a conference in Edinburgh, Scotland via France. Traveling on a smaller airlines to stay within budget. She is not only looking forward to the conference but to her an annual date with Brian a very successful man who wined and dined her in privacy. What she really wanted was to explore the Cathedrals in France and have an adventure, an escape from her busy life. When she misses her connecting flight, she has no choice but to stay in the town of Beauvais overnight.

At the end of her daily run, she takes the time to walk around the grounds of the 13th century Cathedral at the town’s center. Admiring the architecture and stonework, she could feel the history, and almost swore she heard the chisels. When she spied the white gargoyle she swore it winked at her. Obviously due to jet lag. She was headed back to the hotel when she was entranced by a statue of a peasant woman done in bronze, dressed for farming with an axe in one hand and a flag in the other. Lightning strikes just as reaches for the base and she blacks out.

Now we meet Julien of Beauvais, he trips over a woman, alive and naked lying in the field as he returns home from a day of working with the Master Stonemason Bernard. He takes her to his workshop hidden in a copse of trees. Watching her sleep she became his inspiration for his work of art.

Rose awakes to find herself in the compromising position of being naked and in the company of a very handsome male speaking 12th or 13th century French. So begins the tale of how a modern woman can cope finding herself in the presence of an overbearing French sculptor in the year 1240. Romance blossoms, but what would happen? She was not in her time. Would this relationship have a chance to survive?

Well researched and edited, I enjoyed this journey immensely, it makes me want a sequel to see what happens next.

The third Novella is The Miller’s Daughter by Patricia Simpson.

This one is defined as a Historical.

Alaric of Soissons is a new acolyte assigned to carry out the execution of a witch, Merofled, the late miller’s daughter. The execution is interrupted when a harried farmer rides in yelling about La Gargouille taking his son. When no one agrees to help, the witch already sentenced to death and tied to the stake, requests freedom to help the man find his son and get the gargoyle.

No one knows what kind of creature the gargoyle is as it keeps to itself in the swamp. The farmer describes it as more like a dragon than any other creature. The three of them, followed by Merofled’s canine companions set out to find the boy and the gargoyle. When they reach the cave where the boy had disappeared they found three eggs, the contents dead, no doubt perpetuated by the boy. Angered by the deaths, yet determined Merofled sends one of the dogs out searching for the boy.

Unable to search further after falling into the floods of the Seine while roped to Merofled, Alaric decides to cut her free and seek refuge in the cave for the night. The more Alaric converses with Merofled the more he is convinced she is not a witch and does not deserve to die. As events progress so do the feelings he feels for her. Would they find the boy unharmed? Would the gargoyle be killed? Would the witch be tied to the stake again to die by fire, or would Alaric find a way to save her?

This one kept me on my toes the whole read.

This story was well edited and I do believe my favorite of the three.

Overall 5 stars for this collection.

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  1. Thank you, CarolKat, for the very lovely review! I've let the other two writers know.

  2. These sound good. It's not really a genre I read, but you did a great job with the review.

  3. The third story sounds like one I would really enjoy. Good review, CarolKat!


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