A Dance With Danger by Jeannie Lin #Review

A Dance With Danger by Jeannie Lin #ReviewA Dance With Danger by Jeannie Lin

Series: #2 Rebels and Lovers, #5 Tang Dynasty
Genres: Historical Romance
Published by Harlequin Historicals on May 1, 2015
Pages: 282
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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four-half-stars  

I love each new book this author writes in her Tang Dynasty series that just makes Ancient China and its people come to life for me. It doesn’t hurt that there is mystery, adventure, passion and colorful interesting characters. In this case, there is a tie to a previous book, The Sword Dancer, that is great for fans of that story, but this one can still be read as a standalone.

The story opens with Bao Yang still on a quest for vengeance against a ruthless warlord even after Yang’s assassination attempt failed and now he has a price on his head. He hopes to regroup and pull in the help of others who want the warlord taken down so he heads into the city to gain support from Magistrate Tan. Only Yang gets sidetracked by Tan’s bold and lovely daughter, Jin-Mei. He accidentally compromises her and agrees to her father’s insistence that he save her reputation.

Jin-Mei has been attracted to Yang since the first time she encountered him a few years before. She knows what sort of man he is, but even an older, wiser Jin-Mei still feels the pull toward Yang. She is not disappointed when they are forced to marry and dreams of a good marriage and a future. But then a shocking betrayal and Yang’s confession of the truth about his past and his need for revenge sends them on the run, hiding from the authorities. In spite of his confessions, Jin-Mei still wants her new husband and hopes to change his mind about revenge.

This story had all the good things I love about a Jeannie Lin Historical Romance. The settings were drawn like a work of art and I could easily picture the scenes. The layered plot and pace was nice with a variety of heart-stopping danger, quiet times, humor, passion, and the build up to a shocking climax. The main characters who share the narration are both engaging. They have to grow, learn and grow together. It was done well. Then there is the issues driving the plot. I loved the twists and turns of the story and was pleasantly surprised when familiar characters slipped in and out of the scenes: Han and Li Feng as well as Li Feng’s mysterious brother. I really want his story next.

The romance starts as an arranged marriage, but the author managed to balance the strong chemistry between the two and the need for them to get to know each other and grow their romance. The passionate scenes just sizzle even though Yang must teach his new wife the way of physical love. I liked how the natural tension of the story was handled. They are at odds over Yang’s revenge, but it doesn’t get angsty.

All in all, this was a fantastic story and I love the feel that I’ve just visited Ancient China for some romance and adventure. Historical Romance fans might want to pick this book/series up.

My thanks to Net Galley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange of an honest review.

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

Latest posts by Sophia Rose (see all)

  • I really am starting to love the shared narration, and its starting to become more popular…but I like it because you get to see both sides of the characters lives. I think I am going to get this one, its been a while since I have read a story set in ancient china…and its such a unique setting that isn’t done very much.

    • I like the shared narratives too, Renee. I would recommend getting The Sword Dancer first b/c I think you’ll get more out of this one that way.

  • RO

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a historical romance novel focusing on Ancient China and it looks like it would be interesting to read. I like that the characters take time to grow into an arranged situation that works. Great review! Hugs…

    • A few years back I reviewed one of her books and I was hooked. I hadn’t read any romances set in Ancient China before that, Ro.

  • Oh Sophia. Darn my tbr pile is crazy insane. I love the setting for this one. Really everything about it sounds amazing.

    • Haha! I laugh because I say the same things when I spot a book that just has to go on the TBR pile after I visit your site.

      I love these. They’re historical romance of course, but I love that its history and culture that I’m not familiar with.

  • Lindy Gomez

    I love reading about ancient China! My favorite authors that I think you would love (as far as this topic) are Lisa See and Amy Tan (I’m sure you’ve read her books)! This books sounds so good!!! I love when an author’s words are like art, and you can picture the setting. This book sounds amazing with the layered plot, danger, passion, humor… Wow, no wonder you loved it! Excellent Review Sophia, as always 🙂

    Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

    • Glad to point you at a new author to try. Believe it or not, Lindy, I have not read either lady’s books, but they are on the list. I have only read Arthur Golden’s Memoirs of a Geisha for Asian set stories.

  • Awesome review:) I wanna read this series, I love learning about history specially with ancient China an Egypt. They always had such unique customs and interesting culture that really was neat. Thanks for bringing this to my attention.

    • Hey, my pleasure! I love the learning aspect about these too.

  • I saw this one on netgalley and considered requesting it as the china setting sounds interesting, but I think I didn’t when I realized it was part of a series and I didn’t want to start with the fifth book. It sounds amazing how the author can make you feel like you are there, so I might have to check out the first book in this series. Great review!

    • You can start with The Sword Dancer which is the only one directly connected to this one. The rest are all able to be read as standalones, Lola.

  • Doesn’t really sound like my type of book but glad you liked it.

  • vvb reads

    Been meaning to get back to this series. I read Butterfly Swords and liked it. Glad to hear this is good as a standalone as well as I might jump back in with this read.

    • I started with My Fair Concubine (retelling of My Fair Lady- so cute) so I need to get the earlier ones, Velvet. This one can be read as a standalone, but if you can, start with Sword Dancer which comes right before this one.

  • This is on NG already??? Must grab! I loved her steampunk novel, eager to try this!

    • Yes, you must. I love her Steampunk one too. I still need to read the novella in that series.