||October 27, 2003
Unwilling to remain just another poor, country barmaid, Aenna leaves her life behind to save the life of a Prince she's never seen. But she finds more adventure than she bargained for as forbidden love pits her against powerful adversaries and exposes her to intrigues and dangers. Will love be enough to conquer the demons of jealousy, addiction, temptation, prejudice, and violence? Or will Aenna succumb to the increasing spiral of depression that threatens to steal her sanity?
This is one woman's honest portrayal of the sweetest and the darkest times of her life. Aenna reveals her deepest emotions, most private thoughts, and bold confessions as she tells the story of how she learns that romance isn't a fairy tale, but a heart-rending lesson of the sorrows of adoration.
Kimberly Chapman - Sorrows of Adoration
strong fantasy romance
In the Kingdom of Keshaerlan, twenty-one years old orphaned barmaid Aenna hears several patrons toasting Prince Kurit's last mortal days. Doing her civic duty, Aenna treks for two days to warn the royal of the danger that he will face though she does not expect to get close to the royal party. She succeeds and Kurit appreciates Aenna's efforts. To keep her safe, he takes her with him as he and his cousin Jarik flee the killers for the safety of the capital Endren.
While the "Prince" rides, Aenna walks with Jarik, but falls in love with her perambulatory companion only to learn that he is Kurit. Surprisingly Kurit has fallen in love too. Though she was born a peasant, he believes she will make wonderful queen when he inherits the throne. Kurit's mother, Queen Kasha believes Aenna is too beneath her and her son so she tries to drive the peon away so that Kurit will wed her chosen one.
SORROWS OF ADORATION is a beautiful tale that will remind readers of Cinderella (Barrymore's version) though the heroine seems much more capable of living on her own. The suspense takes a secondary but supportive role to a charming cast. This is a very enjoyable tale that readers will relish, but sadly no directly related sequel seems likely. The queen is a delicious villain who readers will love to hate. Author Kimberly Chapman is a gifted storyteller who will be tomorrow's superstar in the fantasy romance sub-genre.
Copper-haired barmaid Aenna harbored hopes that a kind merchant might fix his eye on her, marry her, and whisk her away from the Traveler's Torch to a new life, just so long as the life was an exciting one and she wasn't only to be barely remembered as so-and-so's wife at the end of her days. But she never dreamed what fate had in store for her instead.
Eavesdropping on new and interesting customers was one way to pass the time more pleasantly while working, but Aenna was chilled to the bone one evening when she overheard a group of ruffians planning for crown Prince Kurit's demise and toasting to his last night among mortals.
In a panic and unsure with whom to trust the vile news, Aenna fled into the night, running as quickly as she could for the outpost the Prince was rumored to be visiting. Bursting through the doors, she delivered the message to the handsome young heir to the throne and pleaded with him to save himself.
Unwilling to leave her behind to face the wrath of the assassins, the Prince and his bodyguard whisked her away with them, splitting the tiny group up farther down the road so as to confuse the would-be killers. Aenna made the arduous trek through the woods to slip unseen into the capital city with the Prince's own cousin and bodyguard, Jarik. By the time they reach the city gates Aenna has fallen deeply in love with this handsome, smiling man.
But can there be a happily-ever-after for a peasant girl in love with a high ranking member of the court?
What worked for me:
Aenna is a heroine who is easy to cheer on. The story is told from her point of view, so the reader gets to know her intimately.
There is some very good dialogue in this book, and it helps you to slip into the culture of this world.
The dynamic between Jarik, Kurit, and Aenna was very interesting.
Even though there tragic elements to the story, I felt overall that it held a lot of positive messages within its pages.
Size-wise Aenna was not fashionably willowy like the ladies of the court, and had the good sense not to warp her figure with an uncomfortable corset. She did lose weight at one point, by not by her choice.
What didn't work for me:
The writing could have used some minor polishing here and there.
I'm hard-pressed to imagine a worse mother-in-law!
Aptly titled, "Sorrows of Adoration" is an engaging tale sure to please many a reader.
Warning: There are some steamy scenes in this book. Also, it's labeled a fantasy because it takes place in another world, but there are no magical elements in it.
If you liked "Sorrows of Adoration" you might also enjoy the "Lady of the Knife", "Darkover" series, "The Conqueror", or "Earth Song".
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