The Sword Dancer by Jeannie Lin

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Sword dancer Li Feng is used to living life on the edge of the law–a woman alone in the dangerous world of the Tang Dynasty has only her whirlwind reflexes to trust. She will discover the truth about her past, even if that means outwitting the most feared thief-catcher of them all….

Relentless, handsome and determined, Han sees life–and love–as black and white. Until he finally captures the spirited, courageous Li Feng, who makes him question everything he thought he knew about right and wrong. Soon he’s faced with an impossible choice: betray the elusive sword dancer he is learning to love, or trust his long-disregarded heart and follow her to dangerous, tempting rebellion …

Publisher and Release Date: Harlequin Historical 1 June 2013

RHL Classifications:

Time and Setting: Tang Dynasty, China

Genre: Historical Romance

Heat Level: 2

Reviewer Rating: 4 stars

Review by Ginger Myrick

The Sword Dancer is the well written story of Li Feng, an orphaned dancer trained in the art of classic swordplay. Armed with only one clue, a jade pendant given to her by her mother before their parting, she is intent upon unlocking the mystery of her past. She meets Zheng Hao Han, an upstanding thief-catcher who finds himself inexplicably attracted to this elusive and fascinating bandit he is bound to detain. Han gets caught up in the woman and her quest, eventually finding himself a partner in the search to resolve their entwined fates. These two engaging characters wind up in many precarious situations along the way, adding to the excitement and building the tension between them to an irresistible level.

I gravitate toward out of the ordinary settings, and this book lived up to my expectations on this account. The attention to detail and facility with the culture demonstrate how versed Ms. Lin is in her subject. The fight scenes are depicted in an artistic and theatrical fashion reminiscent of traditional martial arts films, and the romance was filled with a bittersweet tenderness that kept me rooting for the couple throughout. As I am a fan of a long leisurely read, there are some sections of this story that seemed a bit rushed for my taste, but overall the action and adventure will be extremely satisfying for a reader who likes a book to move along at a faster pace.

The Sword Dancer is part of a series but works very well as a stand alone volume. Ms. Lin did a good job of fleshing out her characters and incorporating their backgrounds. I had no trouble following the story and would recommend it to habitual readers of historical romantic adventure looking for a quick-moving read with an Asian flair.

At the time of review, the Kindle edition of The Sword Dancer was $4.61

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