Rating: 4.5 Stars
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Review: I have been looking forward to Lisa T. Bergren's second installment of the Grand Tour series since reading "Glamorous Illusions" last year. Danger makes an appearance at the conclusion of "Glamorous Illusions" and continues to thread through "Grave Consequences," often lurking in the shadows of European landmarks. The sense of impending attack upon the travelling party lends a suspenseful edge to the plot otherwise defined by romance and European history. New characters also add intrigue as Cora attempts to ascertain their motives. Meanwhile, Cora must also contend with matters of the heart and determine her place in the Kensington family. The romantic suspense is often stronger than the mystery of who is targeting the Kensington traveling party.
Bergren established a love triangle between Cora, Will, and the wealthy Frenchman, Pierre, in "Glamorous Illusions." Because the story is told from the perspectives of both Cora and Will, it is easy to relate to their feelings as well as their internal debate about whether or not to act on those feelings. Will and Pierre both have their charms as potential suitors, but I consistently hope for a union between Will and Cora. Of course, circumstances and family prevent an easy match, and increase the interest for readers. I want happy endings for all three characters, but it seems that at least one heart is destined to be broken by the end of the series.
On the surface, Cora's story is like a fairy tale. She is a farm-girl-turned-heiress on the trip of a lifetime, dressing, dining, and traveling in splendor. Her new-found wealth creates hardships for Cora that are evident in "Glamorous Illusions" and "Grave Consequences." The chapters told from Cora's first person perspective provide insight into her inner doubts and attempt to reconcile both sides - Diehl and Kensington. Bergren adds emotional depth to the plot through Cora, and creates a realistic character.
Historical depth is also an appealing aspect of "Grave Consequences." Bergren takes readers on a grand tour of Europe through her descriptions. The sites, tastes, and sounds of France, Switzerland, Austria, and Italy come to life on the pages. These are all places I dream of visiting, and combining them with a historical setting make them even more appealing. I can't wait for the tour to continue in Book 3, "Glittering Promises."
I received a complimentary copy of this book from LitFuse through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Summary: The Powerful, Epic Romance Continues, Book 2 in Lisa T. Begren's Grand Tour series
For Cora Kensington, the journey of a lifetime takes unexpected twists. And her future-her very life-depends on the decisions she'll make at each crossroad. As her European tour with her newfound family takes her through Austria, France, and Italy, an unseen enemy trails close behind. Meanwhile, a forbidden love continues to claim her heart, putting everyone's plans in danger.
And as Cora stays one step ahead of it all, what might need the most protection is her own heart, torn between the dramatic pursuit of a dashing Frenchman and a man who has been quietly staking claim to her affections all along. Love has dangers all its own. She must escape the bonds of the past and discover the faith to make the right choices, as each one has grave consequences.
Meet Lisa: Lisa T. Bergren is the award-winning author of over thirty-five books, with more than 2 million copies sold. A former publishing executive, Lisa now divides her time between writing, editing, parenting three children with her husband, Tim, and dreaming of her next trip to Italy. She lives in Colorado Springs.