I’ve got to hand it to prolific writer Karen Swan for always delivering the goods. I don’t know how she does it—well, maybe I do a little, read on—but in her latest one, THE SPANISH PROMISE (2019, Pan Macmillan), she again succeeds in capturing her readers with an encompassing tale of Spanish ancestry and the after affect of secrets long forgotten. Or are they really? You don’t have to be Nostradamus to know exactly where this one is headed. We all know that towards the end the truth will finally be revealed and in effect set every one free. There’s a gimmick to these types of read. Take a smart but clueless when it comes to love heroine and put her in an unfavorable situation, most preferably overseas, and watch her crumble then flourish as she finally confronts whatever she has to confront. It’s the rule of the game in romantic sagas, and believe you me this one is no different.
If I sound a bit like a know-it-all I apologize. I have nothing but good will regarding these reads. They help me escape from whatever gets my goat, and I’m always grateful for that, especially when a title like THE SPANISH PROMISE hits my Kindle. The central character is what you call a lovable mess. She is good at her job (a wealth counsellor. In other words, she helps people deal with a sudden load of cash) but when it comes to her own personal life, well, everything is in chaos. She’s about to get married to a guy she does not really fancy. The one she so very much digs does not want anything to do with her (even after a hot session of lovemaking, I might add). But most importantly, she keeps finding herself caught in vulnerable, if not embarrassing, positions that only make things worse for her.
Thank goodness her personal predicaments are only half of the plot since everything else is greatly focused on a rich man’s will. This guy has a big secret to share and in no time do the flashbacks involving another heroine, one that is as feisty as she is beautiful, are on the go. To say that these parallel lives are equally strong would be a false statement on my part. Truth be told, I much preferred those remembrance parts than any of those present-day plights involving all. Call it a far more original tale perhaps, who knows. But I found myself turning the pages even more quickly whenever flashbacks beckoned.
Still, everything in THE SPANISH PROMISE is top shape, from the tight narrative to the Spanish setting, not to mention the romantic liaisons that keep the story moving along. If not only for those, there are enough of twists and turns to satisfy any jaded reader who might be looking for something extra. Karen Swan has got another best-seller in her hands.
THE SPANISH PROMISE is available in Canada wherever books are sold. The rest of the world will have to wait until July 11 to get their hands on a copy. My thanks to NetGalley and the publishers for this ARC.