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A London woman is swept off her feet into the glamorous yet surprisingly dangerous world of an up-and-coming star of stage and screen.
Posted February 28, 2013
I'm not one to read romances, like, ever - with the exception of Dorothy Eden's "Winterwood" from 800 years ago or so. I was looking through a pile of used books at a garage sale, found the cover art interesting and didn't put the book down. Sometimes, that is how it works out with a book.
I first heard about Cassandra By Starlight from the author herself. She had Tweeted about female on male rape, which caught my attention as a male survivor of a female predator. When I responded to her and identified myself as a survivor, she admitted to me that my own story had been used as source material for a section of the book. I was not sure what to think at first. Surprise and, umm, surprise. I decided to read it and see what she had created. I added the book to my Nook and then let is sit there a bit. It took me a while to get the courage to read this book.
Now, knowing that part of a horrible experience from my life was to be found masked within the pages didn't make it easier to get started. However, Susan created believable and likable characters that you get attached to quickly. I saw friends in the personality and life experiences that made up both Cassandra and Bennett. They fought and loved and survived. I know that story. Its very real.
The pages dealing with both the rape and the aftermath were realistic from both the perspective of both perpetrator and victim. She was creepy and disgusting and realistic. It was also nice to see supportive friends included and a real reaction to a traumatic event portrayed in the book. Too often, a similar scenario with the same gender mix is played for comedic effect. Male survivors of rape are real people, with real emotions. Susan did not create a caricature.
I don't want to reveal anymore about the story. What I've said above can be found on the author's own blog, so I feel comfortable discussing as much.
Despite what both of the main characters endured, they do find happiness. While at the core, Cassandra By Starlight is a love story, it is a story about transcending adversity and multiple traumas.
Read it. You won't be disappointed.
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Posted April 28, 2013
Cassandra by Starlight (Starlight #1) by Susan MacNicol
Cassandra by Starlight is written by Susan MacNicol, Susan’s writing is great, the entire story and plot flows smoothly, the main characters were well written and you get enough information to get to know everyone, for me it was one of those stories that you don’t want to put down. This novel has elements of romance, suspense and some laughter. Cassandra by Starlight was refreshing to read and I have to say Susan MacNicol did a terrific job and kept me entertained right till the end of the book.
Cassandra is having a bad day and it’s about to get worse; first she wakes up with a bit of a headache due to the wine she drank last night, then on her way to work she gets stuck in slow moving traffic, she even pulls out her kindle knowing she may be there for awhile. And before she knows it something or should I say someone crashes right on top of her car. All Cassandra can remember is a man telling her to hold on. In the hospital we meet Ian a doctor who has suffered loss and feels bad for Cassandra and attraction to her. Then we meet the brother (Bennett) of the man who landed on the car who also feels it is his responsibility to make sure Cassandra is okay. Bennett who is not only from money happens to be an actor and is doing quite well for himself. But he has some family issues/secrets. He also continues to see Cassandra and here begins a great start to a passionate romantic relationship or so they try.
But as I said not all is roses with this relationship, Bennet has a stalker and it appears both Cassandra and Bennett are receiving calls from unknown numbers.
We also learn the Bennett’s family has plans for him and really would like him to marry and have children with a woman who his father knows is much better suited for him. To them Cassandra will always be a reminder of how they lost their younger son.
Cassandra does worry about the age difference as she is 10 years older than Bennett, and if that wasn’t enough Bennett is also from a well off family, he is talented and desired from women all over. Can Cassandra get past all of this?
So put all this together and you find yourself caught up in a pretty fascinating story.
I have rated Cassandra by Starlight a 4 star rating, and would defiantly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good romance/suspense and touch of humour story.
Posted April 15, 2013
This novel takes place over a whopping 18+months. Sound pretty scary right? Not so in this case. Mac Nicol tactfully skips over the times where the action doesn’t relate to the plot of the story. The progression of time is marked via the advancement of the relationship between the main characters. As a reader, you never feel a lack of information, yet you also don’t get bored being drawn out in long gaps of the story where nothing relevant happens. This also means that Mac Nicol can develop a true, strong relationship between her main characters without it being a love at first sight whirlwind.
I love the hot, ‘lanky’ main character. It’s refreshing to see a male lead who isn’t described as being built or a military type. It’s also nice to see a male lead who needs help from others. He can’t solve everything himself. I also appreciate that this well-developed cast of characters is a little older. They weren’t a pair of twenty-somethings with perfect lives. They had their lives put together already and had come from diverse backgrounds, neither of which were easy. The supporting cast was quite interesting as well. Although this novel was based around the world of theatre, the characters came from all walks of life. They melded together into the perfect group of friends, each bringing something new to the scene and were unique in their own right.
As a whole, this was a very intriguing novel. It had a nice, easy flow making it easy to immerse yourself in, but wasn’t racing towards a finish. It was a refreshing change from the norm that we’ve come to expect in romance novels and left me quite satisfied at the end.
Please note that I received this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review
Posted September 25, 2012
Review of Cassandra by Starlight
By Susan MacNicol
Reviewed for Innovative Online Blog Tours Sept. 24 2012
Although I expected an enjoyable story, “Cassandra by Starlight” proved to me much more than I expected. Beyond a contemporary passionate romance, which seems at times almost Cinderella-like because of the disparity of its partners, in wealth, age, social position, and celebrity, “Cassandra by Starlight” brings mystery, suspense, thrilling adventure, and fascinating cultural background. So this novel is yes, a sensual, passionate, love story-but multi-layered. Truly, I couldn’t put it down.
Cassandra, an independent, hard-working career businesswoman, is driving to work one early morning when a body crashes into her hood, wrecking her car and causing her broken bones and a temporary coma. The deceased is the wild younger son of a high-powered upper-class businessman, the younger brother of the famed actor Bennett Saville. Bennett visits Cassie frequently in hospital and is struck by her beauty as well as her character. While an ER doctor, Ian, falls in love with Cassie, Bennett makes a point to spend time with her, and soon Cassie and Bennett are both passionately and emotionally entwined. But Bennett, as a celebrity, has his fans and groupies, and he also has a psychotic stalker, one who is determined to control Bennett as she has so many other men.
Although I do rate this novel 18+ for sensuality (tastefully sensual) and for some violence and suggestions/discussions of violence, I highly recommend it for almost all readers. It’s very enjoyable and I believe will find a wide and happy audience of fans.
I was provided with a copy of this novel in return for my fair and impartial review.
Posted September 24, 2012
Cassandra has no luck when it comes to dating. Even though she doesn't have really high expectations, life doesn't seem to be on her side as she ends up with creeps and morons. After a really bad date, she resigns herself to staying at home with a cup of wine and decent movies. All of a sudden, as she is minding her own business in very slow moving traffic, a body crashes onto her windshield causing her a lot of damage as she is hurled into the ER. She is later informed that the body belonged to Eric Saville, who just happened to be Bennett Saville's - the famous actor - brother. Bennett feels guilty over what his brother did to this woman, especially since he nearly killed her. So he monitors her healing progress and decides to spend some time with her and enjoys her company immensely. Cassandra on the other hand is uncomfortable with the whole thing, especially since he's years younger than her, which causes havoc with her life.
I quite enjoyed this book.
The obvious humor in the writing and with Cassandra especially made me laugh a couple of times. Even though she's old, she is still a good looking, smart and funny lady. So for me, I don't get. Why she'd always end up with weirdos, I really liked her character. I also liked Bennett and for some reason the family drama hooked me from the start. I was looking forward to how it would unfold. Although the first part gave the impression that it was Ian she was going to be falling for, but somewhere along the way it turned to Bennett.
I liked how it went in first person with both her and Bennett, and well with Ian at first too. It showed the contrast between the characters, since Bennett is so serious with his family, work and friends. But Cassandra was lonely but pretty much hilarious on her take of things. Even the traffic jam, she'd made a light spin on it and liked it a lot.
The writing itself was clever, simple and quick to read. It was also enjoyable and gripping so you'd find yourself hooked from the very start. Great read!
Posted September 24, 2012
"Cassandra by Starlight" is a beautifully written romance novel that will keep you reading until the end. Between the twists, turns, ups and downs of the well written plot, Susan Mac Nicol keeps her characters realistic in her debut novel. I fell in love with this story and recommend it to all romance fans.
This review is based on a complimentary copy which was provided for an honest review.
Posted September 27, 2012
No text was provided for this review.