The Lotus Palace | Jeannie Lin

Friday, November 6, 2015

I absolutely loved this book! Once I started reading, I didn't want to put it down. It's the perfect mix of romance, adventure, murder, mystery, culture, tradition and family. In this wonderfully written historical fiction, everyone has secrets, and each character is much more than they appear. I thoroughly enjoyed the relationship between the main characters, Yue-ying and Lord Bai Huang.

Yue-ying is a feisty and clever maidservant to the well-known courtesan Mingyu. Lord Bai is a flamboyant fool and patron of Mingyu, but he is captivated by her maidservant, Yue-ying and the cherry red birthmark on her face. Yue-ying is determined not to fall for Lord Bai's games, until he comes to her for help in solving the murder of Huilan, another well-known courtesan. As they work together to find the murderer, there is no denying the attraction building between them. Is it really love or just sexual? Neither will know until they share all of their secrets, but can they overcome family and tradition, in a world where a maidservant can never be anything more than a wealthy man's concubine? I devoured The Lotus Palace to find the answers to these questions!

I love the exploration of social tradition and the roles of women in this time period. I most appreciated reading the polite exchanges between characters with these meticulously built facades that are presented to society. Each character has many layers that are slowly pulled away to reveal their true nature, hopes and fears. It is a roller coaster of emotion and mystery, and I savored every minute of it!

I received a copy of this book through a Goodreads Firstreads Giveaway.