Runaway by Marie-Louise Jensen

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Runaway by Marie-Louise Jensen

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Category: Teens
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Robert James
Reviewed by Robert James
Summary: Really enjoyable historical adventure with a great romance.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 320 Date: June 2014
Publisher: OUP Oxford
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0192735355

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After her father is brutally murdered, Charlotte escapes the city to try to find a new life, and to avoid the vicious killer who is surely tracking her down. Disguising herself as a boy, she puts her skill with horses to good use by finding employment at a grand country estate, drawing the notice of a kind man far above her station in life. But while Charlie tries to grasp happiness where she can find it, the shadow of the past looms over her. Will she ever be truly free of the terror of her father's death?

I really enjoyed the way Marie-Louise Jensen captured the time period so well here, drawing the reader back into the servants' quarters and the stables of the 18th century. I also liked the strong cast, particularly Charlie and her love interest - who have great chemistry together - while the twists and turns of the very exciting plot meant that I was never sure who Charlie could trust! Charlie is a clever, resourceful and courageous heroine and as a narrator she has a very strong voice. It's fascinating to see how she manages to fool nearly everyone into believing she's a boy. In addition, I was touched by the love she showed for the horses, particularly the beautiful Belle.

I've only read one book by Marie-Louise Jensen prior to this, the equally excellent Smuggler's Kiss. My sole complaint there was the book's length - it was one of the very few of recent years that I thought would perhaps have been better if it was a bit longer; a hugely rare criticism for me to make. No such quibble here though, the pacing for this one is perfect and builds nicely to an superb climax.

Highly recommended; I really must remember to check out some of Marie-Louise Jensen's other books, which all look brilliant as well!

I think fans of this would love Smuggler's Kiss, as mentioned above, along with The Fool's Girl by Celia Rees, another excellent historical story with a great main character. We also enjoyed Dangerous Remedy by Kat Dunn.

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