This beautiful historical romance continues to demonstrate this author’s ability to present individuals tortured by their experiences who find a way to claw their way to happiness. The intense and heartwrenching after-effects of war has a pervasive influence on both those who fought directly and those who are at home, and this story exquisitely depicts the journey that two wounded souls take. I love the way each of them must learn to be their own advocate, and reach for a dream that seems unreachable. Vows made and honored can either be a source of strength or a prison, and the story explores the importance of deciding what one is comfortable with accepting or fighting against, even as it emphasizes that there are multiple aspects to any story which colors one’s perception. My favorite aspect of this author’s works is that the characters are definitely not perfect but find a way to face their failings and grow beyond them, making difficult decisions that may not conform with society’s dictates but which are right for them. I enjoyed the opportunity to get a slightly different view of events touched upon in other books of this series and look forward to reading more about the unique members of the Survivors’ Club.
“The Escape” by Mary Balogh is part of the ‘Survivors’ Club’ series and centers on Sir Benedict (Ben) Harper, who has barely survived the war but is still struggling with his severe injuries, some of which have made it virtually impossible for him to walk. His depression and aimlessness leads him to visit his sister, Beatrice, where he makes a less than salubrious impression upon widow Samantha McKay who has escaped the strictures of her sister-in-law, only to have her outing ruined by the apparently boorish man. Further acquaintance gradually allows each of them to realize that although they each have hurdles to overcome, life may still be worth exploring. Samantha’s desperate decision to change her life may either be the best or worst gamble she has ever made and Ben must decide whether to explore the possibilities of that become available to him or continue along the path that he is on.
In this poignant novel of longing and salvation, a hopeful widow and a resilient war hero discover the promise of love’s magic and new beginnings.
After surviving the Napoleonic Wars, Sir Benedict Harper is struggling to move on, his body and spirit in need of a healing touch. Never does Ben imagine that hope will come in the form of a beautiful woman who has seen her own share of suffering. After the lingering death of her husband, Samantha McKay is at the mercy of her oppressive in-laws—until she plots an escape to distant Wales to claim a house she has inherited. Being a gentleman, Ben insists that he escort her on the fateful journey.
Ben wants Samantha as much as she wants him, but he is cautious. What can a wounded soul offer any woman? Samantha is ready to go where fate takes her, to leave behind polite society and even propriety in her desire for this handsome, honorable soldier. But dare she offer her bruised heart as well as her body? The answers to both their questions may be found in an unlikely place: in each other’s arms.