Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Pen Review: The Nude by Dorothy McFalls

Welcome to Easter Edition of The Pen Review! Sorry about the delay in reviews and articles as it has been hard to keep up and being ill doesn't help. I also want to try a new feature call why you should read it. I hope you all like it! I had the privilege to read the work of Dorothy McFalls. I have to say this is a book you will want to pick up to enjoy time and time again.

The Nude by Dorothy McFalls

Genre: Regency/Romance
Publisher: Five Star Expressions
Author Site: www.dorothymcfalls.com
Price/Purchase: To be released in May
Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Why Should You Read it?

The Nude by Dorothy McFalls is a tale of romance, intrigue, mystery, and about going on a journey to find oneself through the most powerful emotion, love. If you love regency, romance, and want to travel back in time to another era then you will certainly want to pick up this read. It was my favorite because it was a page turner, I enjoyed the dialogue and characters especially that of Elsbeth. Elsbeth is a strong, caring, and loving character whom you see grow in this story.


Blurb:

After Elsbeth, Countess Mercer's husband died fighting the French on
the Peninsula, the young widow hoped to quietly spend the rest of her days
with her uncle and his two spirited daughters. A painfully public exhibition
of a nude painting of her ruins her plans. This isn't the first time the
painter, Dionysus, has caused havoc in her life. But she vows it will be the
last.

Nigel, the Marquess of Edgeware, a reclusive but powerful figure in the ton
has connections with Dionysus and reasons to protect the artist's true
identity. He hopes that seducing the lady will be the swiftest and most
effective means of diverting her attentions away from that blasted painting.

But together they must risk their hearts and their lives in order to uncover
the secret behind THE NUDE.

Excerpt:

He'd finally lost his sanity. There was simply no other way to explain it.
His breathing quickened as a lone tallow taper sputtered, the bright orange
flame turning smoky. Dionysus tore his gaze from his work long enough to
search the cluttered workshop-the floor littered with discarded brushes and
paints-for a replacement.

"Sir?" a servant called after tapping on the door. "Sir? Please, will you
eat today?"

Dionysus, too absorbed in his work, lit a new taper and returned his
attentions to the canvas. His heart thundered in his chest. He lifted his
brush and pulled it slowly across the canvas-tracing the gentle curve of a
thigh.

Her thigh.

He'd only seen her briefly at the Baneshire's ball. She was a widow, one of
the grand matrons of the ton had whispered, after taking notice of his
overlong stare. He could not, no matter how hard he tried, lift his eyes
from the beautiful creature dancing-nay-floating like a gossamer faery
across the glassy ballroom floor.

"She's my niece," the Earl of Baneshire had told him when asked. "Her
husband died on a battlefield in France, poor thing. Left her without a sou.
It appears his estate was mortgaged to the hilt." The earl paused to watch
his niece curtsy to the man she'd been dancing with as the set came to a
close. "She's just now out of mourning clothes. It warms my heart to see her
in something other than widow's weeds. I could introduce her to you."

Dionysus's heart had been hammering, like now. His palms had grown moist and
his mouth dry.

Could it be her? Could it really be her?

"No, no, thank you," he'd said with a bow. He didn't even ask her name
before finding a footman, before demanding his carriage sought and his cloak
retrieved. No matter what, he could not stay.

He could not.

That very evening he'd locked himself in his workshop, trying desperately to
exorcise the demon that had stolen his sanity. He'd tossed aside six
canvases before finally finding the right strokes and the right shades of
pigment to create a portrait of the woman.

He held his breath, lightly tinting the tips of her breasts with a delicate
paint prepared from powdered garnets. Her deep eyes from crushed sapphires.
Her full lips from the dust of rubies.

As he stepped back, a wave of dizziness overtook him. He reached out to
steady himself against a small worktable. He'd missed too many meals, lost
too many nights of sleep. Pulling a shaky hand through his hair, he stared
at the image in front of him.

It was perfect.

She was perfect.

Now that the work was finally finished and his obsession drained away, he
could see what he'd done for what it was-madness.

Unable to lift his eyes from the painting, he sank to his knees. What had he
been thinking? What had he created?

No one could ever see it.

No one.

But to destroy it, to deface the perfect image of her, would surely be
echoed by the destruction of his soul.

His strength gone, Dionysus curled up at the base of his easel and fell
asleep with her perfect ruby lips smiling down on him.

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