Annette K. Larsen
“You don’t know who I am,” I whispered. He didn’t move—either away from me, or closer—and after an interminable moment, I stepped back and hurried out of the house. He didn’t follow me as I fled into the night. Lylin was not used to being alone—much less alone, hurt, and lost. So when she is separated from her guard and forced to abandon her horse, she counts herself lucky to stumble upon a manor house. Still frightened by those who chased her into the night, she keeps her identity a secret, calling herself Lily as she accepts the help of kind servants, and the compassion of Lord Fallon. When they fall into an easy friendship, she wonders if her secrecy was too hasty. However, as she gets to know the manor and its residents, Lylin discovers that she’s not the only one hiding secrets, and it may be a very good thing that her host doesn’t know her true identity as a member of the royal family.
My Review: I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Missing Lily is a clean YA fantasy romance with fairy tale elements. It's a cute story with a secrets, a sweet romance, and a nice ending. If you liked Ms. Larsen's first book Just Ella, I think you'll enjoy this sequel about Ella's younger sister.
Lylin is an interesting character. Brought up with etiquette in the forefront of every public action, it's fun to watch her interact with the less rigid Lord Fallon and his household. Lylin and the handsome Lord Fallon fall for each other rather quickly, though a certain secret makes any relationship between the two impossible.
I liked the plot, the part the letters played (I can't get into it without spoilers). Lylin is in an impossible situation and my heart really went out to her. The best part of this novel was the characters and the interactions among them.
While one could say the descriptions paint a vivid image of the setting, I felt mired at times and thought they made the novel move too slow. Sometimes it's better to leave things to the reader's imagination. While I couldn't put Just Ella down, I had to force myself to read this one at times. I felt like the first third to half of the story dragged, while the second part flew by. All in all this is a good story with great characters and a suspenseful plot.
I was born in Utah, part of a crazy, fun family of nine. I grew up in Flagstaff, AZ and St. Louis, MO before striking out on my own college adventure in Virginia. I decided to try my hand at writing novels after I was married and living in Idaho. I write clean romance because it’s my favorite genre, but often difficult to find.I have Charlotte Brontë to thank for the courage to write novels. After being bombarded with assigned reading about women who justified abandoning either their families or their principles in the name of love, I had the great fortune of reading Jane Eyre. And that was it: finally, a heroine who understood that being moral and making the right choice was hard, and sometimes it hurt, but it was still worth it. After rereading it several years later, I realized that if I wanted more books to exist with the kinds of heroines I admired, then I might as well write a few myself. My books are about women who face hard choices, who face pain and rejection and often have to face the reality of sacrificing what they want for what is right. The consequences are often difficult or unpleasant, but in the end, doing what’s right will always be worth it. I believe there is no substitute for good writing or good chocolate. Fortunately, one often leads to the other.
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