Author: M. J. Putney
Publication: St. Martin's Griffin; Original edition (September 13, 2011)
Description: The Irregulars return home to 1803 England safely, but their worldview has changed. Not only have their heroic efforts at Dunkirk given them pride and confidence but their dangerous mission has increased their magical powers.
Tory delights in the ever deepening bond she shares with Allarde until she discovers how powerfully he is connected to his ancient family estate—the lands he will not inherit unless he denies his magical powers and chooses a nonmagical mate. If Tory really loves him, she must walk away—but does she have the strength to leave the love of her life?
Cynthia’s heroic efforts at Dunkirk have won her the respect of the Irregulars, but her sharp tongue keeps everyone at a distance. Isolated and very alone at Lackland Abbey over the Christmas holidays, she reluctantly agrees to join Jack Rainford and his family for their celebration even though they’re commoners, far below her own noble rank. The warm welcome of the Rainfords makes her feel happier and more accepted than she has ever been. But she can’t possibly be falling in love with flirtatious Jack! Can she?
Then the Irregulars are drawn into a dangerous attempt to rescue a vitally important French scientist from Nazi-occupied France. Tory and Allarde must work together because countless lives are at stake. Disaster strikes and not only is their mission threatened, but their very lives. Can magic and their loyalty to each other help them survive to return home?
My Thoughts: I really enjoyed this exciting second adventure for Tory and her companions. They have returned safely to 1803 from their adventures in England in 1940 and are finding that their magical powers are stronger than ever. Unfortunately, their problems also seem to be growing. In the England of their time, aristocrats hate magic and magic users. Aristocratic children with magical powers are frequently disinherited or otherwise shunned by their families and society as a whole.
While Tory's father is shunning her, her brother and sister are not. She is invited to attend her sister's wedding which will be held at her brother's house and without her parents in attendance. She is glad to be able to be with her sister even though it means leaving her prickly roommate Cynthia behind. She does run right into the prejudice of the upper class society at her brother's home. She also gets to see her love Allerde who is a neighbor of her brother's. Visiting his home and meeting with his parents convinces Tory that she has to give him up for his own good. If he doesn't manage to conceal his magic and marry a girl with no magical powers, his father will be forced to disinherit him cutting him off from the land that he is connected to and losing him his chance to be a duke. Tory's decision manages to break both their hearts.
Meanwhile, with Cynthia left behind at the school, we get to know her a lot better. We begin to find the reasons why she is so sharp-tongued. She is invited home for Christmas by Jack Rainford and she accepts rather than face the loneliness of the school. She feels that Jack is definitely her social inferior and he possesses an absolute talent for ruffling her feathers but she is attracted to him anyway.
When Nick comes back through the mirror from 1940 needing their help again, Tory and Allerde are swept through time with him on a quest to rescue an imprisoned Jewish scientist from a castle in France. Elspeth, Jack and a very reluctant Cynthia soon join them in the rescue attempt. The action is fast and furious and the danger intense despite all the magic the group has.
This was exciting and romantic. I think lovers of time travel, historical fiction, and romance will really enjoy this sequel to Dark Mirror. I think they will be waiting eagerly, along with me, for Dark Destiny which will be published this summer.
Tory smiled. "Why is it that the events that improve our character are so often unpleasant?"I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.
"Because if we're happy, there's no reason to grow and change."