Starcatcher - Patricia Potter This historical romance set in medieval times features a sensitive hero, a strong heroine, an assorted cast of lively secondary characters and a fast-paced adventurous plot that, unfortunately, kept me from fully enjoying the developing romance between the hero and heroine.

Marsali and Patrick are betrothed at a young age and, unlike many arranged marriages, they're actually happy about it. They're good friends and as they grow a little older they become attracted to each other and both are looking forward to the day when they'll be wed. When Patrick returns home after a sixteen year absence, scarred, tired and heartsick (he's been off fighting a war), he finds Marsali betrothed to another and their families, who've always been great friends, are now at war. After secretly meeting Marsali, Patrick figures out that something fishy is going on and sets out to find the culprits responsible for the family feud. All the poor, weary man wants is peace and his Marsali back but he'll have neither until he can force two stubborn old men to face the obvious truth.

This was an okay read but not a keeper. I loved the opening of the book, it really hooked me, but somewhere along the line the original magic got lost. It didn't seem to me like the hero and heroine spent all that much time together, possibly because there was always so much going on around them. Because of this I just didn't get a chance to know or feel anything for the characters. It's not that they were unlikable or annoying, they just didn't engage me. They were beautiful, brave and honorable - blah, blah, blah - but they weren't all that original or special and were almost a bit on the "too perfect" side. And the dialogue (after the first few chapters) just didn't move me - I didn't laugh or cry. Also, I knew where the story was leading very early on because I was told who the bad guys were and exactly what their whole devilish plot was about so the following war/adventure story was a bit of a chore to get through. And the last thing I wasn't crazy about was the heroine's pet ferrets. I thought they were unnecessary because they didn't provide any humor, and although they did help bring out Patrick's sensitive side, I felt they weren't necessary for his character's growth. They were portrayed as snippy, temperamental creatures without much allure. I've said before that I wish there were pets in every book but in this case they were more of any annoyance than anything. And I like ferrets! My Mom has a cute, shy, little guy who has never snarled or bit anyone even when he's had good reason. All this stuff combined made for a very slow read.

There were things I did like about this book or else I never would've finished it. I'm a real sucker for a Scot's accent and I always like a strong warrior who still manages to retain his sensitive heart and this story had plenty of both. And I'm sure you'll like this book if you're really into action-adventure "me & you against the world" plots and don't mind near perfect characters. There was nothing offensive about it, it just wasn't my cup of tea. I think this just confirms something about my tastes, I'm not crazy about action-filled romances UNLESS the characters wow me with their charming personalities. Only a selected few have managed to work for me because the adventure almost always overwhelms and ruins the love story for me. Some I can think of that worked were: Diana Gabaldon's OUTLANDER (although I stopped there, couldn't get into the 2nd one), Justine Dare's FIRE HAWK and Patricia Ryan's SECRET THUNDER.