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Unclaimed

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Unclaimed (2011) Courtney Milan

UnclaimedSet in London and Shepton Mallet, in 1841

Sir Mark Turner was knighted for his popular work on morality, however, neither he nor anyone else expected this popularity and what would come along with it–adoring crowds, jealous individuals, and random people trying to make money off his popularity.

Why was it that men had to take every good principle and turn it into some sort of a club? Why could nobody do the right thing on his own? And how had Mark gotten himself embroiled as the putative head of this one?

“I’m not a member of the Male Chastity Brigade,” Mark said, trying not to make his words sound like a rebuke. “I just wrote the book.”

For a moment, Tolliver simply stared at him in disbelief. Then he smiled. “Oh, that’s all right,” he said. “After all, Jesus wasn’t Church of England, either.”

I quite like Mark.

Really, Mrs. Farleigh. You must think that because I have never been in anyone else’s skin, I cannot be comfortable inside my own.”

I really really liked Mark.

“But, Sir Mark! She’s wearing scarlet. She made you give up your coat. You can’t really believe she’s an innocent. She…she could be a fallen woman!”

“There is no such thing as a fallen woman—you just need to look for the man who pushed her.”

“When someone falls,” Mark said, “you don’t throw her back down in the dirt. You offer her a hand up. It’s the Christian thing to do.”

Jessica Farleigh is a courtesan looking to retire from the life, and so she takes the challenge (and hopes for the reward) of knocking Mark Turner off his pedestal.

She wasn’t impossibly thin and delicate; nor was she extraordinarily buxom. Still, she somehow made every woman around her seem wrong and ill-proportioned by comparison. For just one second, Mark felt a wistful tug. Why doesn’t anyone ever try and foist women like her off on me instead?

Mark Turner has bought back his family’s childhood home, and looks to escape the crowds of London there.

From here, he could not make out individual words—just the rough lilt of Somerset farm country, a rise and fall that, from a distance, sounded like…home.

He hadn’t been back in more than twenty years. Long enough to lose the accent himself, long enough that his tongue felt too fast, too sharp in his mouth, an unwelcome, foreign invader in this familiar place.

I very much liked the idea of a courtesan heroine, especially paired with Mark’s ideals on chastity.

We also learn about the Turner’s mother–as her insanity played such a large part in how her sons developed. The things she did were horrifying, but they were also not unlikely–especially in a time where parents were generally allowed to do as they pleased with their children.

Again, the one thing I didn’t like is the boinking prior to marriage–not on a religious grounds, but because it just didn’t feel right for that character.

I can easily believe that Mark would accept Jessica as she was–that was very much in his character. I just have a hard time believing that he’d not wait until marriage.
Rating: 8/10

Published by Courtney Milan

Categories: 8/10, British, Historical, Romance     Comments (0)    



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