You told me Lois McMaster Bujold was sooo good and I had to try her. And now I'm halfway through Beguilement, and I'm looking for which library I can get the next Sharing Knife book from, and did you know this woman has written about six kersquillion books? Possible closer to seven kersquillion. That's like 7000 kajillion--and now I have to read all of them! Like, right now!
What this book points out to me is actually where Mercedes Lackey's books for the new Harlequin fantasy imprint (Luna, I think it's called) has gone wrong. This book is straight-up fantasy, but mostly the story is a romance, and my God, I feel like a twelve year old swooning when they make eye contact. But it's such a solid story, both the romance and the fantasy plot, that it all works really well. Whereas the one Lackey romance that I read--something about dragons and a geeky princess who gets cool new glasses and saves the world through books--was just awful, because it refused to embrace its romanticness--or really to even be romantic. It was too busy making her a Strong Woman. This book barely even notices that our heroine is a strong woman. She just is. She is weak only in the knees.
Sorry. Bad pun. Good book, though.