The Courtesan's Daughter
by Claudia Dain
published October 2nd 2007
by Berkley Publishing Group
Paperback, 336 pages
isbn 0425217205 (isbn13: 9780425217207)
1 of 5 stars
“Claudia Dain’s emotionally charged writing. . .will take your breath away.” – Sabrina Jeffers
Jeffers’s statement might be true, but I wouldn’t know because Courtesan’s Daughter didn’t have any. Or any wit. Or any heat. Or any lukewarmth.
And I’m pretty sure Dain used the word “delicious” more than Rachel Rae uses it in a decade.
The basic premise of the book is that men can be manipulated by sex, and only by sex; and that women can manipulate with sex, and only with sex. I don’t care if this is true or not; that Dain based an entire book on the premise made the feminist in me disdainful – on behalf of both genders.
Sophia Dalby was a courtesan who became a countess. Her daughter Caroline is unmarriageable because of her mother’s past. Lord Ashdon is the son of Sophia’s bitter enemy, so of course, she thinks he is the perfect one to marry Caroline. Add in several yards of pearls and a couple of half-Iroquois cousins, and you’ve got a novel that uses 713 synonyms for “breasts” but can only seem to describe the vulva as “folds.”
I’m not a romance fiction girl, but since winning the BBAW prize from Tote Bags n' Blogs, I’ve been exposed (no pun intended) to a variety of it. Romantic fiction may be fluff, but it’s not the drivel many people take it for. Except for Courtesan’s Daughter. This is a book to give your bitter enemy.