Aug 24, 2014

A Love by Any Measure by Killian McRae

A Love by Any Measure by Killian McRae
Genre: Historical Romance
Bottom Line: A historical romance that sticks to the social realities of the time period. This story had a lot of heartbreak and a lot of twists and turns.

Synopsis (Goodreads):

An Irish lass. An English lord. 
A love that overcomes all boundaries, but at what cost?

Lord August Grayson, English landlord, has secretly, and much to the dismay of his father, held in reverence the object of his first fancy: poor Irish tenant Maeve O'Connor. Returning to the Ireland for the first time since his youth, August discovers that Maeve has grown into a woman of beauty and tenacity. August understands, however, that he could offer Maeve nothing but shame if her pursued her. But when circumstances allow him an opportunity to indulge his fancy, even if only in a limited scope, August finds himself unable to resist the temptation. 

Maeve,for her part, knows the danger falling for August holds, but finds her heart and her good senses becoming confused the longer she spends in his company. As two hearts become hopelessly entangled, both Maeve and August are forced to question the costs of their love. As consequences of their romance manifest, both struggle with the pain and difficulties their love causes, both for them and for their loved ones.

Killian McRae's delve into historical romance will challenge reader's presumptions of the genre. A title garnering controversy due to McRae's preference towards historical truth versus genre-standard "love despite the realities of the day" perspectives, it asks at what cost winning love is justified. "A Love by Any Measure" is an exploration of a romance that strives to overcome divisions of cultural, socio-economic, and religious differences in an era where options for lovers in such situations were limited.

My Thoughts:

After reading an romance after romance, this novel icy cold blast of reality. This was in no way a light-hearted romance. The plot was deep and convoluted and kind of made me hate life for a bit. After reading the synopsis, I expected a story of a man who loved a woman below his station but decided to seduce her anyways after which they realize love can conquer all and they get married and live happily ever after...hooray!  Sadly (or happily, if you're in the mood for some severe emotional turmoil), McRae sticks to the reality of the times in that a Lord just cannot decide to marry an Irish commoner.

This story was an emotional rollercoaster.  Every time August did something sweet and life started to look a little better for Maeve, there would be some wrench in the plan. My relationship with these characters was generally pity for Maeve, and a slight disdain for August and the way he treated Maeve. However, I admit that their relationship was believable considering the time period and that August was Maeve's Lord, and she his tenant. I accept it now, but I certainly spent a lot of my time being pissed off while I was actually reading the book.

Overall, this book WAS romantic. But I had to get through a lot of heartbreak first, so the happy ending was a little bittersweet. This book used a lot of flashbacks and flashforwards. A bit too much for my liking. I found myself incredibly confused at times, and some of the twists seemed a little unnecessary. They certainly made me wonder how in the world the story could have possibly taken such an odd turn, thus forcing me to continue perhaps the flashbacks/forwards did do their job! This plot was serious and took a lot of unexpected turns. I would love to claim that the realistic heartbreak of this story was a breath of fresh air after so many historical romances, but hey, I'm a romantic. I like my light-hearted, happily-ever-after stories.  

Rating: 7

Find it on: Amazon | Goodreads | Killian McRae  

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