By Paullett Golden
This is one of the best books I’ve read EVER! It made me smile, it made me laugh, it made me angry and then it made me very happy.
The Colonel and the Enchantress is about a young couple, Duncan and Mary, from different social classes in the 19th century. Duncan is working class and Mary is the daughter of a Duke and Duchess. Duncan enters the army and quickly climbs up the ranks to Colonel in the hope that he will be worthy enough of Mary’s hand in marriage. However, he returns from active service with a crippling injury that leaves him paralyzed from the waist down. The book’s main storyline is Duncan and Mary’s relationship and how they navigate their life together in spite of Duncan’s condition.
Duncan and Mary are beautifully drawn. Both have flaws that come with consequences and both have strengths that hold them together. Mary is stubborn to the point that she fails to see her mother, the Dowager Duchess’s, position on the relationship in any other light than as one of cold-hearted snobbery. There’s a beautiful scene towards the end of the book where the Dowager Duchess explains to her daughter that she was on her side the entire time if Mary had only listened. Duncan, on the other hand, is caring and kind but sometimes selfish and has a tendency to push people away because of his own insecurities. One of my favourite moments is when Duncan is in bed feeling sorry for himself and he and Mary get into an argument over whether Duncan was “worthy” and “useful” enough to be her wife and Mary says, “I need you, not because I need you to do something for me, but because I need you.”
What’s so satisfying about this love story is that it feels real. There are no points in the plot where anything feels forced or contrived. The love between Duncan and Mary, the arguments they have, the moments they make up, all flow naturally, and I don’t once end up rolling my eyes.
Overall, this is a book I would definitely read again, and that I recommend to anyone who loves a good period romance.