Pamela Clare's historical novel "Sweet Release" follows the tired old plot of a nobleman falsely accused, imprisoned, and enslaved, only to fall in love with the strong-willed daughter of his new master.
Alec must prove his innocence and restore his good name before he can commit to Cassie, a typically anachronistic heroine who runs a plantation, is educated, rides astride, and forsakes corsets. Like most romance novels set in Colonial (or pre-Civil War) America, all the good guys hate slavery and would never, ever use the "N-word". While this makes it easier for modern readers to stomach, it seems a little unrealistic. There's nothing conspicuously wrong with this book, but there's also nothing new or unique to it.
The author has apparently found a checklist for writing a romance novel, and checked off each item as she wrote it. It has a paint-by-numbers plot, overused characters, and a frankly yucky birth scene in the epilogue.
This was the author's debut novel, and I can only hope she branches out a little in subsequent books.
Though Cassie hates the slave trade, her Virginia plantation demands the labor, and she knows this fevered convict will surely die if she leaves him. But Cassie realizes Cole Braden is far more dangerous than his papers have indicated -- for he can steal her breath with a glance or lay siege to her senses with a touch. Abducted and beaten, Cole goes from master of an English shipbuilding empire to years of indentured servitude in the American colonies. And while he longs to ravish the beauty who owns him, his one hope of earning her love -- and his freedomyis to prove his true identity. Only then can he turn the tables and attain his sweet release.