Before I start this post, I’m going to get a few things out of the way: I know I’m late to the Jeanie Lin party; I’ve heard about how incredible she is (I follow her on Twitter – I’m using this as evidence to this proposition); and I am both happy and sad I’m so late. Happy because I’m not sure I would have appreciated her as much as if I were only a reader. Sad because as an author, I’m fully aware of the extent of her talents. How is she able to create such riveting, bold stories?
Wait, I’m getting ahead of myself.
I picked up A DANCE WITH DANGER on a trip to a second-hand bookstore. Usually, I’ll buy authors I haven’t tried before like this, regardless of how highly they’re lauded. I like to see what works for me before I deep dive into an author’s backlist. In this case, I wasn’t disappointed.
A DANCE WITH DANGER by Jeanie Lin is incredible.
Jin-mei is the daughter of the local magistrate. She finds herself in a compromising position with one of her father’s acquaintances and they’re forced to marry. This doesn’t bother Jin-mei too much because she’s always had a thing for Bao Yang. The only complication is that he’s wanted by a criminal warlord – and soon, Jin-mei finds herself running away with him.
Jeanie Lin creates one of the most vivid, immersive settings I’ve ever read in this book.
I felt as though I was there with the characters, travelling along rivers, scaling mountains, being chased by soldiers. Jin-mei is a strong heroine, who learns to lean into her strength as the book progresses. Bao Yang is an untraditional hero; a murderer who is bent on revenge against the man who hurt his family. Their romance is breathtaking. It is slow and steady, with emotional and sensual tension building to such an extent that when they finally consummate their marriage, I had to check whether I was still breathing. And the writing? Some of the best I’ve seen. Jeanie Lin’s descriptions are gorgeous and so unique that they stay with you long after you’ve finished the book.
Oh – you’re still reading this blog post? Stop! Go buy this book and read it instead! Handily, I got you the link 😉
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