Author: Tessa Dare
Original Title: A Night To Surrender
Release Year: 2011
Literary Genre: Romance
Setting: England (Spindle Cove), regency
Series: 1° of Spindle Cove series
Surely is not the best of the series, which by the way boasts very good “pieces”, see for example the splendid Any duchess will do or Once upon a winter's eve; also the others from Spindle Cove, even if they aren't exactly at the above mentioned level, are quite beautiful.
A night to surrender unfortunately lacks consistency, firstly isn't particularly remarkable, then it gets better, quite better actually, but some time later, again, it falls in a semi-anonymity status, and the story continues alternating really moving and touching moments to not exactly noteworthy parts.
It must be said that is the author's style that cheers up the whole romance, making the reading more thrilling; if A night to surrender had been supported by a more pronounced central thread, this Spindle Cove romance, probably would have been good as the others. The characters are beautiful, I enjoyed their personalities, their relationships and their fears, they aren't unashamedly common.
I read the others books from the series before this one (my fault), so I found a bit boring the whole description about what Spindle Cove is, how and why it grows that famous, its inhabitants and so on, but this is a problem of mine and exclusively personal: I already knew the story from the others five books and, given that A night to surrender is the first one, is obvious that the backstage and the setting are more pronounced.
Susanna Finch is the beautiful, high-spirited and strong Spindle Cove “dame”; the village, located in Sussex, has quickly became the destination for those girls, who because of their personalities, their behaviours or because of some health problems, have been excluded from society or simply they don't feel comfortable in it. Susanna's purpose is to help them in regain their self-confidence and above all to let them know they are appreciated and useful.
The young Miss Finch is the only daughter of the only gentleman in the place, an inventor who was and still is, fundamental for England's military successes, especially in the crucial moment of the napoleonic war. And is exactly the inventor to whom the valiant Lieutenant Colonel Victor Bramwell (who after a long convalescence from a war bad leg injury and from which he will never completely recover) asks for help to go back to the war: Mr Finch is the man who, given his strong authority, can guarantee he is still fit to fight and to conduct a regiment.
Finch accepts but Bramwell has to organise a militia in Spindle Cove and he also has to present the inventor's last creation when he'll be back to the continent.
Susanna is strongly vexed by this “invasion” and by the disorder that it would bring to the village where women have gained a considerable position; therefore the strifes with the Lieutenant are the order of the day. Anyhow Bram doesn't make a mystery out of his intense attraction for the determined and fiery Miss Finch, but he tries to hold himself because of the respect toward her father.
For her part, Susanna, who is a bit of a do-gooder, wants to help the grumpy and wounded, not only physically, Bram; this, and the recurring disputes, will only get them closer and closer willy-nilly.
So, the story isn't bad at all, and I think the same about the characters (almost all of them have their own story in the series), but is like there isn't the core, the romance frame; it didn't particularly catch me and I'm sorry about that because Spindle Cove is a really good series and the author has a captivating and exciting style; however she has definitely improved her writing.
Colin (A week to be wicked) is the funniest as always!
Spindle Cove series: 1. A night to surrender (Susanna, Victor)
1.5. Once upon a winter's eve (Violet, Christian)
2. A week to be wicked (Minerva, Colin)
3. A lady by midnight (Kate, Samuel)
3.5. Beauty and the blacksmith (Diana, Aaron)
4. Any duchess will do (Pauline, Griffin)
Tessa Dare's bibliography