Author: Hannah Fielding
Publish Date: April 2012
Source: I received a copy from the author; however, this did not affect my review.
Why You're Reading This Book:
- You're a historical fiction fan.
- You're a romance fan.
- You're an armchair traveler.
From Goodreads.com: "Coral Sinclair is a beautiful but naive twenty-five-year-old photographer who has just lost her father. She's leaving the life she's known and traveling to Kenya to take ownership of her inheritance--the plantation that was her childhood home--Mpingo. On the voyage from England, Coral meets an enigmatic stranger to whom she has a mystifying attraction. She sees him again days later on the beach near Mpingo, but Coral's childhood nanny tells her the man is not to be trusted. It is rumored that Rafe de Monfort, owner of a neighboring plantation and a nightclub, is a notorious womanizer having an affair with her stepmother, which may have contributed to her father's death. Circumstance confirms Coral's worst suspicions, but when Rafe's life is in danger she is driven to make peace. A tentative romance blossoms amidst a meddling ex-fianc, a jealous stepmother, a car accident, and the dangerous wilderness of Africa. Is Rafe just toying with a young woman's affections? Is the notorious womanizer only after Coral's inheritance? Or does Rafe's troubled past color his every move, making him more vulnerable than Coral could ever imagine? Set in 1970, this contemporary historical romance sends the seemingly doomed lovers down a destructive path wrought with greed, betrayal, revenge, passion, and love."
My Two Cents:
"Burning Embers" tells the tale of Coral who returns to Kenya and to the beloved house where she grows up after she inherits the house after her father's death and only after her engagement totally falls apart. On her journey to Kenya, she meets a stranger who she is attracted to immediately (oh, insta-love). Once she gets to Kenya, she realizes that Rafe, the stranger she met on the boat, knows her step-mother and there might be something more to why he seems to be very interested in Coral and her newly acquired house, Mpingo.
My favorite part of the book is the setting. I don't get a chance to read a lot of books set in Africa so it's always a treat when I find a book that is set there. You all know that I love a good exotic location! I didn't know much about 1970s Kenya so it was really interesting to read about how much the country was changing. Fielding paints a really vivid picture of the country and the seaside town that Mpingo is in. You can picture what the landscape must look like. I could definitely see why Coral would want to stay there! My fellow armchair travelers will really enjoy this perspective.
I had a really hard time with the romance in this book. Rafe really never grew on me. Coral falls for him very quickly but it was really hard for me why she fell for him. He seems sort of full of himself and he is sort of a womanizer too but Coral seems to not think about any of that. Once Coral sort of figures out the mystery of why Rafe is always hanging around, why he painted pictures of her before they ever met, and why all of the workers at Mpingo seem to deeply distrust him, she can't help but to feel like she's still attracted to him. Even when all those issues get cleared up, she is willing to leave everything she wanted for him but I still wanted to understand more about the why.
Overall: Begin for the promise of romance, stay and linger for the setting.