Born of Persuasion

Born of Persuasion. Price of Privilege Series #1   -     
        By: Jessica Dotta

Born of Persuasion 
Jessica Dotta
Tyndale House Publishers

The deeper you wade into some stories, the more complex the riddle grows...does that not sound utterly intriguing? After reading the book description and the author's bio, I had very, very high expectations for this book. In the end, I am completely confused about what I think of it.

The year is 1838, and seventeen-year-old Julia Elliston’s position has never been more fragile. Orphaned and unmarried in a time when women are legal property of their fathers, husbands, and guardians, she finds herself at the mercy of an anonymous guardian who plans to establish her as a servant in far-off Scotland.

With two months to devise a better plan, Julia’s first choice to marry her childhood sweetheart is denied. But when a titled dowager offers to introduce Julia into society, a realm of possibilities opens. However, treachery and deception are as much a part of Victorian society as titles and decorum, and Julia quickly discovers her present is deeply entangled with her mother’s mysterious past. Before she knows what’s happening, Julia finds herself a pawn in a deadly game between two of the country’s most powerful men. With no laws to protect her, she must unravel the secrets on her own. But sometimes truth is elusive and knowledge is deadly.

The mystery was intriguing, but confusing...sometimes in a good way, and other times not so much. I was never sure which characters to like...or which characters I was supposed to like. (For instance, I sort of liked Edward...much more than Mr. Macy, anyway, who from the beginning I found to be really creepy. And yet, even so there were little glimpses of Mr. Macy that I liked.) Am I the only one who wanted to know more about Mr. Greenham? For some reason he was one of the characters I was interested in the most.

There was a sort of mastery and power about this book that I haven't come across often, but some things just puzzled me. I never really connected with Julia; Rissi mentioned on her blog that Julia seemed more like the narrator than the protagonist. For a story written in first person, I felt like the reader didn't get to really know Julia very well, and sometimes the story seemed a little stagnant, although it picked up in the end.

As the reader, many questions are left unanswered, and I am looking forward to the next book. However, this novel was a little dark (It's not compared to the Bronte's Gothic novels for nothing) and I didn't care for the stormy romance with the mysterious man- but maybe that's just my taste in books.

Rating: 7 

I received this book for free in exchange for my honest review.


  1. Sorry you didn't love this one, Hayden. However I totally get what you're saying. As a mystery, this book was quite masterful. Just the same, if readers want a more character-driven novel, this is not for them - it doesn't reveal enough.

    PS: Thanks for the shout-out! :)


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