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Friday, April 8, 2011

Ecstasy’s Endgame by Tessa McKay

Ecstasy’s Endgame by Tessa McKay
Lady Faire Book 3
Publisher: Devine Destinies
Genre: Time travel, historical, sci-fi/fantasy, contemp.
Length: Full Length (226 pages)
Heat Level: spicy
Rating: 4 books
Reviewed by Lavender

Kyra Morgan always wanted to live in the past, and now she's found a way to do just that. Whether she likes it or not. Wrapping herself in black velvet under the sweltering Southern sun, Kyra spends her summers working at the Tudor Rose Renaissance Festival, as a Lady in an imaginary royal court. She hasn't had much luck with men either and has little interest in handing over her heart again, so she immerses herself in her scholarship and the local faire where she can escape into the past and ignore the problems of the present day.

Rafe Harrison is hard to ignore, however. Handsome, confident, and boorish, he is beloved by most everyone at the faire, particularly the women. Even Kyra's best friend is quick to champion him, much to Kyra's dismay. Kyra knows little about Rafe, but wisely despises his bravado, his appeal, and his slipshod reenactment methods. And when Rafe is implicated in her best friend's riding accident, she cannot forgive him for his neglect or herself for the unwelcomed sensations he stirs within her. But after tampering with a gypsy potion, Kyra suddenly finds herself and Rafe transported back to sixteenth-century England, and it is nothing like the 1500's back home. It is a dangerous time of court intrigue, French wars, and Scottish insurrection. Kyra soon finds that she must learn to trust the courage and heart of the man she reviles if they are to survive. And, more importantly, she must learn to trust her own heart as she fights for both her own and Rafe's survival upon one of the bloodiest battlefields in England--Flodden.

Ecstasy’s Endgame by Tessa McKay is a great final installment of the Lady Faire Book Trilogy. I read the first two books and was not disappointed with the ending.

Kyra and Rafe work at a Renaissance faire and get sent back in time to the fascinating Tudor era, specifically, to the time of King Henry VIII. In this third book of the trilogy, they are separated at first. Rafe joins with the Scottish and prepares to fight in a historically famous battle against the English. Kyra is a prisoner of the well-known Boleyn family. She has contact with characters we’ve read about in history books.

By this time, she and Rafe are involved romantically. How will she get to him? Her escape is interesting. Gypsies help her. From this point the reader gets a great view of their culture. They take her in the direction she needs to go. Kyra knows that the upcoming battle ends in the slaughter of the Scottish and is anxious to get to Rafe. Why should he die an unknown and unremembered man for a cause that is not his own? The suspense is well drawn here, and the setting is weaved throughout the tale effectively.

The reader gets a glimpse of the battle and some interesting insights into historical people such as King James. As for Kyra and Rafe, they are well-developed characters. I liked them both, but particularly Rafe. In the first two books, I wasn’t crazy about Kyra, but in this one, she becomes more engaging. I rooted for the two of them and their love.

This is a great story, escapist in intent, meant to entertain, and it even provides dashes of history for those who love learning something in their reading. The book has slow spots but makes its way to a satisfying and memorable conclusion. I was drawn in emotionally and really enjoyed the ending. I’d recommend this trilogy for those who love time travel, romance, and history.