My rating: 3 of 5 stars
After she nearly ruins her family with a terrible misstep, Elena Spira is sent to Venice to escape disgrace and to atone by caring for the ailing Samuel Farber. But the crumbling and decaying Ca’ Basilio palazzo, where Samuel is ensconced, holds tragic secrets, and little does Elena know how profoundly they will impact her. Soon she begins to sense that she is being watched by something. And when Samuel begins to have hallucinations that make him violent and unpredictable, she can’t deny she’s in mortal danger.
Then impoverished nobleman Nero Basilio, Samuel’s closest friend and the owner of the palazzo, arrives. Elena finds herself entangled with both men in a world where the past seeps into the present and nothing is as it seems. As Elena struggles to discover the haunting truth before it destroys her, a dark force seems to hold Samuel and the Basilio in thrall—is it madness, or something more sinister
I love the setting of the story. Venice is just such a fantastic city to read about and Megan Chance has really painted a wonderful picture of the city. I found the story interesting to read and I especially loved the paranormal part of it. It just made the story a bit more interesting to read. I usually don't like love triangles, but it worked in this book mostly because it never really felt like a love triangle because Elina never agonized over whom she loved. The story never dwells on that. Instead, both men are part of the process of setting her free from her old life and that is something that the end clearly showed. She has all her life lived a perfect life, until the scandal and by coming to Venice is she trying to set everlasting right again. But she isn't doing that for herself, but for her family. Now she is starting to find herself and perhaps even a different future than her family wants.
The one thing with the story that, unfortunately, is my main problem is that the story is too predictable, there is just no twist to the story, there are no real moments of surprise and that is unfortunate since I quite enjoyed the book. I think one main problem for me was that I was never really taken in by Nero. I always liked Samuel more, he was just a much more interesting character with his epilepsy and his family's need for him to marry someone with the right name. So, I was never truly moved with the ending. But still I liked the very last chapter, and I would like a sequel to this book. I would love to see what's next for Elina.
I received a copy of this book from TLC Book Tours.