Emerald Embrace

Written by Shannon Drake
Review by Troy Reed

Originally published in 1991, Drake’s tale set inScotland in 1865 delivers a Gothic feel and an element of suspense. When Lady Martise St. James learns that her friend, Mary, has suddenly died, she travels from America to Scotland to investigate her friend’s death. As soon as Martise arrives at Castle Creeghan in the Scottish Highlands, she is met with a sense of foreboding. The lord of the castle and the late Mary’s husband, Bruce Creeghan, is a mysterious and attractive man, but there is something about him that Martise does not trust though she immediately feels the passion developing between them despite her better judgment. Martise’s goal is to uncover the mystery behind her friend’s death, retrieve a missing emerald that she knows must be hidden somewhere in the castle, and escape the clutches of the castle alive.

Though the novel is fast-paced and packed with steamy love scenes, readers may get a sense of déjà vu because the dialogue between the two main characters is very repetitive. Drake does keep the reader guessing as to who is behind the mystery and deception at the castle, but the best quality of the book is the atmospheric descriptions of the castle and its surroundings.