Thursday, May 7, 2009
THE BRIDE FINDER by Susan Carroll
The St. Leger men are cursed. Part of this curse says when it was time to mate, they will know it and they'll only have one shot at pairing up with their destined loves. If they blow that chance, they're out of luck. For all eternity.
Yeah, I know. No big pressure there!
To help them with this crucial task, they employ the Bride Finder, a man (or at least, it has always been a man) with a talent for finding the perfect mate for St. Leger men. Usually the two of them work as a tag team to sweet talk the bride into marrying into the crazy, I mean, cursed family.
Usually. Anatole St. Leger, the head of the family, believing himself unlovable, sends the Bride Finder out solo. He isn't good looking. He doesn't have a sparkling personality. He also isn't fussy about what the woman looks like as long as she's hardy (i.e. built in generous proportions – as he's a large, rough guy) and doesn't have red hair (as he foresees his doom being at the hand of a red haired woman).
The bride the Bride Finder returns with has… you guessed it, red hair and is a dainty little thing. She also believes that her groom-to-be is a dashingly, romantic poet-type figure.
So Anatole is torn. He recognizes immediately that she is his destined mate but he is also aware that she will be his downfall.
The Bride Finder, published a decade ago, is one of the early paranormals. The characters are rich and wonderful and oh-so-tortured. The story is Beauty and the Beast (my favorite storyline) with a twist. It also has one of my favorite lines. “The thrilling consciousness of having tamed something wild and dark to one’s side…” There's a reason it sits on my keeper shelf and has been re-read for years.
As far as I know, Susan Carroll doesn't have a website which is both quaint and irritating. There are at least two other books in the series (Midnight Bride and The Night Drifter). I haven't read them because these deal with the children of Anatole and Madeline and I'm not a big fan of reading about my fave characters getting older (or dying as the only way, Anatole's son can become head of the family is for his dad to die).