A Promise at Dawn by Jane Leopold Quinn

A Promise at Dawn by Jane Leopold Quinn
Publisher: Siren Bookstrand
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short (59 pages)
Other: light BDSM, M/F, Voyeurism
Rating: 4 cherries
Review by: Tiger Lily

Faye Burke, recently widowed, retreated to the coast of Maine to grieve and reassess her future. Her favorite part of the day is watching the sun rise out of the Atlantic Ocean. It’s also when the man she considers her guilty pleasure runs along the beach.

Gil Farrelly, a successful painter, is trying to get his career back on track after the studio fire that destroyed everything. He starts his creative juices flowing every day by running on the beach. The lovely woman who watches him also gets his juices flowing, and he’s determined to reinvent his career by painting her. Faye’s combination of maturity and sensual vulnerability intrigue Gil, and he wants to immortalize her on his canvas.

She’s flattered, aroused, and ultimately frightened of the emotions he incites. He claims not to care he’s younger by twelve years, but she believes sooner or later he’ll come to his senses and seek out women his own age. Can Faye conquer her fears? Can Gil prove to her it’s not age separating them but her fear?

Life seems like it ends when someone you love dies. Does it? Not necessarily. Sometimes life begins just when you think its hit the skids. Don’t believe me? Then read A Promise at Dawn. You’ll change your mind.

Ms. Quinn writes a sweeping short story that reels you in from page one with characters you won’t forget. I liked that these characters weren’t perfect and they weren’t young. Now I’m not saying they were old or past it, but it’s sweet to have a story come along about characters that are in the prime of their lives. Life doesn’t end at thirty.

Gil lost everything in a fire and has to start over. Faye lost her husband due to health issues and she, too, must start again. I liked how the stories were separate but similar. The idea of the painting bringing them together was very powerful and full of passion. Without actually touching her, though a lot of touching ended up taking place – and it was hot – he managed to get past her defenses. Her sincerity melted his, bringing them to a closeness few understand.

Although I would’ve liked to have seen her be a bit stronger in the clutch, I liked her vulnerability. I liked his straightforwardness. The scene where he touches her with the paintbrushes… whew! You could feel the passion and the love building between them, despite the fact that they refused to believe that they were falling for each other.

If you want a sexy novella that will stay with you long after the last page, then you need to read A Promise at Dawn. You won’t regret it. I give this story 4 cherries.


  1. Hi Tiger Lily, thank you so much for your wonderful review of my book. I surprised myself at the paintbrush scene. 🙂 But it was fun to write.


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