When I started reading it the first thing I suspected is that is very similar to [b:Shanna|896621|Shanna|Kathleen E. Woodiwiss|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1327869967s/896621.jpg|695105] and after finishing it, I had it confirmed.
Obviously, this story is NOT a photocopy! It is good, it is still fresh and it is HOT! *wink*
Alec/Cole at the beginning is a high-stung English, but as the story proceedes he's doing a fast growing up! I like him though. I liked how he was capable to remain himself, even in front of very difficult situation he found himslef in: from rich to indentured servant in an almost blink. He's not afraid of hard work, he's not so haughty to avoid slaves, he's good with children.
Cassie is sometimes incredibly strong, sometimes too naive for everyone's good. She's in a difficult situation: her father is mentally sick, but she must avoid anyone outside the estate finding it out, else she'l have the estate taken out of her hands, her slaves sold to other, more cruel owners, her married off to somebody... a very dire stiuation! She's a good person: her slaves are treated good, her indentured servants too. She shares her food and medicine with everybody on her estate without distinction. But she's also young and naive...
Obviously, when she buys Alec, she does it because she think that otherwise he will die and she's not going to allow it. She nurses him, but when he awakens and tell her who he really is, she doesn't believe him. But as she gets to know him better, she changes her mind, and tries to help him prove it and, in the meanwhile falls in love with him. He too is not immune to her: what starts as lust, grows into love.
But there are others to consider: the neighboring estate owners. Some are good people, but there's one family that is really awful. And the hair wants Cassie and doesn't understand why she doesn't want him.
So all kind of problems arise: she has to maintain the ruse that her father is abroad and not sick; that Alec is only her indenture servant when he's her lover; that she's just a weak female following her father's directived about managing the esatte when she's a clever manager herself...
Sometimes she is a very mature and intelligent, but sometimes she's jut plain naive. Alec too... Just one example: she and Alec make love outside, in the barn, sleep all night long in her bedroom... and neither think that somebody could be spying them!
One complaint: the back-story in England is barely touched. I would have preferred to get more information of how Matthew find out about Philip's treachery. This part was just overlooked and I missed it. I think the book could have been much more rich if this was included.
The chemistry between Cassie and Alec is hot, hot, HOT. Pamela Clare knows how to write a sex scene!!! :D