Title: Butterfly Swords
Author: Jeannie Lin
Genre: Historical Romance
Published: Oct 1, 2010
Format: ARC ebook
How I Got It: reviewed for Net Galley
|Read an excerpt|
Journey to the very edge of honor, loyalty . . . and love
During China’s infamous Tang Dynasty, a time awash with luxury, yet littered with deadly intrigues and fallen royalty, betrayed Princess Ai Li flees before her wedding. Miles from home, with only her delicate butterfly swords for a defense; she enlists the reluctant protection of a blue-eyed warrior…
Battle-scarred, embittered Ryam has always held his own life at cheap value. Ai Li’s innocent trust in him and honorable, stubborn nature make him desperate to protect her – which means not seducing the first woman he has ever truly wanted….
Butterfly Swords is the story of Ai Lin, a Chinese princess that has serious doubts about her husband to be. She knows that Li Tao is a traitor and is heartbroken that her family won’t stand behind her.
Trust and honor are very important to Ai Lin, but she pulls a runaway bride stunt and stages her own kidnapping just to get away. Her immediate plan is to return home to her family to explain, but once her father hears what she has to say, she’s forced to take more drastic measures.
Determined to escape the wrath of her family and her supposed to be husband, she enlists the help of Ryam, a barbarian she charms into risking his life for her.
First of all, when I read the blurb and saw the Butterfly Swords cover on Net Galley, I already knew that I was going to read and love this book. This is probably due to the fact that I grew up watching martial arts movies and have developed an infatuation with sword fights and Jet Li. No, I’ve never studied, but it’s just so fun to watch!
I immediately liked Ai Lin. She was very naïve at times, but had enough backbone to control her own destiny and not be auctioned off for the sake of the Empire. I love heroines that can handle themselves and don’t have to wait to be saved. And you’ve got to admire a princess that trains to be a warrior when she could be kicked back in the palace with servants ready to answer her every beck and call.
Ryam was in the right place at the right time, but he's one of those characters that have to grow on you. You want to like him, but he's always doing stupid stuff because he's a man and you can't tell him any better. But he redeemed himself in the end, which made for an awesome HEA.
Another bright spot in the story was Ai Lin’s grandmother, Mei Lin. I’m guessing this is where she got her spirit from, because it certainly did not come from her mother. I enjoyed the story she told Ai Lin of how she met her grandfather, so The Taming Of Mei Lin novella will go on my TBR.
I loved Butterfly Swords and would recommend it. If you don’t love it for the romance, you’ll still love it because Ai Lin is a kick ass heroine. I give Butterfly Swords four and a half flowers of love.