by W.E. Lawrence
My rating: 4 stars
Publication Date: October 15, 2014
Publisher: W. E. Lawrence
Genre: Historical Romantic Suspense
Print Length: 297 pages
Available from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
In 1888, beautiful but quite capable Kira Wall was living a challenging and enjoyable life in a relatively isolated culture. However, her world gets turned upside down with the arrival of an Australian merchant ship carrying the evil and deceiving Captain Darcy Coleman along with its handsome doctor, Trevor Marshall. Each man, in his own way, possesses the ability to charm and seduce. For the innocent souls of the remote island paradise, including Kira, they are both intoxicating and will, using different methods, test her will to the limit.
After she reluctantly agrees to be Trevor’s guide, things become unraveled when she suspects he is distracting her from the renegade captain who has his own ulterior, “get rich”, motives for being there. Her situation becomes desperate when no one will listen. The evil captain has a devilishly captivating manner, plenty of "modern" goods with which to woo the islanders, and a clever ability to lie his way out of suspicion. He has also brought a new invention, dynamite.
Kira came to the island of Alofa as the child of missionaries and stayed on long after her parents’ deaths. Beautiful, brilliant and mistrustful of these sailors, she realizes questions as to their intent, but the trusting tribe chief believes in the goodness of all hearts. Accompanying the evil captain, who has the charm of a snake, is a young doctor intent on searching for rare plants to be used medicinally. As his guide, Kira finds Trevor handsome, charming and he is getting under her skin with his good intentions, so at odds with the captain.
Under the guise of helping the natives, the captain’s crew is searching for buried treasure, not gold doubloons, but a rare and exotically beautiful stone, worth more than its weight in gold. But will they destroy the beauty of the island and the trusting nature of the islanders in the process? Is the budding romance between Kira and Trevor a ruse to keep her out of the way? When push comes to shove, both Kira nd Trevor must make a stand, but will they stand alone against rape of the island or will the islanders and an active volcano come to their aid?
Two worlds, one scarred by greed, one filled with the beauty of contentment and trust clash in W.E. Lawrence’s Guardian of Paradise. From the wonderfully described island scenes to the smell of the ocean, one can almost hear the swish of swaying palm fronds. W.E. Lawrence has created a world of paradise on Earth on this tiny island, including the touch of a breeze as his world comes to life with each page. And the evil? Enter the heavy pounding of organ music, the sneering lies of the captain behind his jovial façade. Let’s not forget the romance, wonderful, warm and very tentative in its beginnings, all well done by W.E. Lawrence.
I received this copy from W. E. Lawrence in exchange for my honest review.