by Georgia Taylor
Reviewed by Coral
Aisha is a contently married woman. Living in Cairo, first wife in the harem of aged physician Kamar al Zamen, rich in her own right, Aisha lives a content life. When the time comes and her husband dies, she has no plans to go and live with her adult son, but to live on her own, contently, for the rest of her days. But everything in Aisha's life changes when Vikings sail in Cairo's harbor.
Aisha is kidnapped and raped. After doing nothing to stop the attack, a Christian monk named David is able to talk his way into getting her freedom and they are both left on a frozen-wasteland of an island, surrounded by hostile and distrustful Vikings. But, as luck would have it, the island is home to Dan Sea Kingsson, a Viking trader Aisha met in Cairo. Now, as Aisha waits and prays for her husband to rescue her, she also finds herself drawn more and more to Dan. Can she take a chance on the love that's growing between them?
I don't really know where this book came from, it was just sort of in my pile. While trying to look up more information about the book or the author, I couldn't even find more than one mention of it on the net; I think that says something about its quality.
Not that it's bad; it's just pointless. For most of the book it isn't even telling the story it's supposed to tell. There is more page space devoted to David, the Christian monk, and his attempts to win the respect and conversion of the Viking people. The "romance" doesn't even begin until the last hundred pages and there's not nearly enough time spent on the buildup to make it believable.
I was also kind of offended at the way that rape was treated just as a sort of plot point. Besides one "what will he think of me when he finds out" moment, it's never really brought up again. I'm not going to pretend that I understand anything about what someone goes through when they're raped, but I don't think it can just be dismissed. If you're going to write about rape I think, at least, you need to have your characters deal with it.
Because of this I was going to give the book a D grade, but because I was so happy that it didn't go the cliché route of having Aisha fall in love with her abductor, it gets upgraded to a C.