Format: Audiobook (Audible)
Series: The Pingkang Li Mysteries #1
Author: Jeannie Lin
Genre: Historical Romance
The Lotus Palace is a historical romance set in China and covers the story of Yue-Ying and Bai Haung.
Yue-Ying works as a maidservant to one of most famous courtesans at the Lotus which happens to be one of the many pleasure houses in the city of Pingkang Li.
When another man is murdered and also another well-known courtesan, Yue-Ying finds herself a sometimes unwilling participant in finding out about said murders. And then there is her attraction to Bai Haung, a young aristocrat who frequently visits the Lotus. Yue-Ying knows she shouldn’t feel the way she does towards Bai Haung but she knows there is something more to him besides his clownish act that he shows the world. And with her being a servant and her past as a prostitute, she knows that they can never have a real future together.
Bai Haung knows Yue-Ying's worth, he knows there is more to the shy young woman who hides behind the birthmark on her face and who merely serves her mistress. She’s smart, clever and he is most attracted to her. Bai Huang wants more than to enlist her help in assisting him in solving the murder of the courtesan, he wants a future with Yue-Ying. But the only thing Yue-Ying is willing to offer him is limited time as his lover and he will not have that.
I liked the story but I felt that the audio version added “more”. I got lost in the narrator's voice and I thought she did a excellent job in taking on the voices of the many characters in The Lotus Palace. I also enjoyed her description of events and the scenery in and around PingKang Li.
I did feel the mystery got a little lost in the shuffle of the romance that went on between Bai Haung and Yue-Ying. But I will say that the romance was the best part of this story. I really enjoyed Bai Haung’s fight to convince Yue-Ying that they could be more than what she imagined them to be, it made for great storytelling.
There are many things going on and its just not the romance between Yue-Ying and Bai Haung or the murder mystery. Their romance and the mystery brings to light some things that others want to leave buried. But with Bai Haung's persistance in being invovled because of a promise he felt he didn't keep and then when someone who is close to Yue-Ying becomes involved, secrets won't stay buried for very long.
If you have a thing for a historical romance that is rich in detail, then I definitely say give this one a try.
BnB 2016 Diverse Romance Challenge
Hot Listens & Book Nympho 2016 Audiobook Challenge
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