Shades of Blue by Richard C. White

BLUE
Shades of Blue by Richard C. White
Publisher: Musa Publishing
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Historical
Length: Short Story (20 pages)
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

Caught between a demon and a devil.

One of these days, I’ll learn.

All I had to do was meet a ship and escort a lady to meet her new husband. That seemed simple enough. Maybe my luck was finally changing.

However, I knew my luck was holding steady when I learned about the Black Beast pursing her. Of course, I discovered that after we were on the road. What’s worse, to my surprise, I actually like Lady DuMond. Should I warn her about the fact Baron Charles Azul has a reputation as a lady killer, figuratively and literally?

And why are we only traveling at night?

Between the beast behind us and the one waiting for us, I don’t see how we’re getting out of this situation. But, I’m not going down without a fight.

How do you outrun a beast that never gives up?

The unnamed narrator of this book certainly has his hands full! It’s difficult enough to travel on horseback over rough roads with a stranger when you’re not worried about her safety. He comes across as a man with little to no experience communicating with members of the opposite sex who come from his social class much less a noblewoman. I imagine that he’d much rather protect someone who doesn’t have such strong opinions about life.

Lady Daphne’s astute description of her impending arranged marriage made me instantly like her. She is understandably wary of marrying a stranger based on what he’s told her about his life in a letter before but is determined to give it her best shot. At times I wished I could view certain scenes from her point of view as she was such an intriguing character.As interesting as the narrator was I actually found myself spending more time wondering about Lady Daphne’s thoughts.

The metaphors were also quite memorable. The most vivid example of the care Mr. White took in painting unforgettable scenes involved a ship called The Alexander violently crashing into a dock in one of the first scenes. I shuddered in sympathy as he described the hull being torn apart by the terrible collision as if it was a living entity.

Despite clocking in at 20 pages Shades of Blue feels like a full length novel. I finished it wishing there could be more to this tale and hoping that Mr. White gives readers another opportunity to get to know these characters better in the future.

Shades of Blue is the perfect choice for anyone who loves surprises. I had a tentative theory about what might happen to Lady Daphne and the narrator early on but learning the truth was as entertaining as revising my predictions along the way!

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