Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sunday Salon: The Highest Stakes by Emery Lee

The love of all things equine first drew me to Emery Lee’s debut novel, “The Highest Stakes.”

The author’s ability to spin a story keep me entranced between the covers of this moving historical romance. “The Highest Stakes” is set in England during the mid-18th century. At that time, horse racing was a gentleman’s sport catering to the society of nobility.

This is the story of forbidden love, greed, hatred, revenge, and retribution with a good dose of history mixed in.

The story focuses on star-crossed lovers Charlotte Wallace and Robert Devington. After being orphaned at age 13, Charlotte goes to live with her uncle, Sir Garfield Wallace, and his family. There she meets Robert, a stable boy in her uncle’s employ.

Robert teaches Charlotte to ride and their love of horses, as well as for each other, blossoms. But their love is never meant to be it seems. No matter what Robert does to prove his love and worth, Charlotte’s uncle will not hear of their union. He is willing to sacrifice Charlotte’s happiness for a better status in social standings.

Author Emery Lee takes the reader on a journey of twists and turns, of highs and lows, and love and betrayal. Ever present in the backdrop is thoroughbred horse racing. From beginning to end, the author keeps you guessing and wanting for more.

You don’t have to be a horse lover or race enthusiast to enjoy this book. The story is written in the language of 18th century England. For the reader unaccustomed to reading the language it takes a little bit to get familiar with. However, once the reader does they find it adds so much flavor to the story and puts them in that era.

From beginning to end, author Emery Lee has a blue-blood winner with “The Highest Stakes.”

The Highest Stakes by Emery Lee * Sourcebooks * @2010 * ISBN: 978-1-4022-3642-6 * Paperback * 560 pages

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.


  1. This books sounds great-it is going on my wish list.

  2. You must love Dick Francis's mystery novels, all about the sport of horseracing. Nice review. Here's my Sunday Salon

  3. I'm with the premise of this book. Thanks, Mason!

    Mystery Writing is Murder

  4. Mason - Thanks for this review. I was thinking exactly what Book Dilettante mentioned - Dick Francis' wonderful horse racing mysteries. I'm a fan of historical novels, so this premise really does sound interesting.

  5. Esme, it is a delightful book with a little surprise at the end.

    Harvee, believe it or not I haven't read any of Dick Francis' novels. I'm not sure why I haven't. I'll pop over and check out your Sunday Salon.

    Elizabeth, I think you'll enjoy it.

    Margot, there is a lot of history in this book that I think you'll enjoy.

  6. As much as I love horses, I have never read about them! And now you give me a great way to combine my loves of "all things equine" and all things biblio.

    Thanks for the recommendation.


  7. Sounds like an intriguing book. I wouldn't have enjoyed living during those times. I like my control!

  8. Sounds like this book has a lot to offer, whether you're a horse lover or not. The story sounds intriguing.

    Straight From Hel

  9. Michele, this will definitely interest the horse lover in you.

    Jemi, I agree. I don't think I would have enjoyed living during that time either. I guess we would have been the rebellious type. :)

    Helen, it is written in such a way that you don't have to love horses or horse racing to enjoy it.

    Marvin, it is interesting book.

  10. Mason - Me again : ). Please stop by my blog. Something awaits you there : ).


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