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Judith Tarr
DEVIL'S BARGAIN, THE
book cover


2002, Roc, tpb


Who recommends: Danielle, Julie
Who discommends:

This was vintage Tarr in the writing style and in the romance subplot--star-crossed lovers on opposite sides of the Crusades. It's an alternate history in which Eleanor of Aquitaine is an evil sorceress and the heroine is Richard Lionheart's bastard half-sister.

I love most of Tarr's earlier books, but I've found her later stuff rather monotonous. A month or two after reading this book, I don't remember details about any of the characters except the ones that annoyed me. It's probably a sign that I've read too much fan fiction, but I felt the heroine verged on MarySue-dom. (Violet eyes, for Pete's sake!) Considering the forces keeping the h&h apart, the romance should have had more emotional impact, but I never really felt any tension about the outcome.

My final verdict would be a very mild recommend. It's a quick read; pick it up if you love the time period or Tarr, otherwise I wouldn't bother.--Danielle (8 Feb 03)

I finally read a book, and Danielle reviews it for me. LOL. My thoughts exactly. Maybe I'm tired of Tarr's work, she definitely needs to break out a little. But it was a quick read with a happy ending, which is always good.--Julie (8 Feb 03)



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