I received a copy of When Love is Blind by Endeavour Press on NetGalley in exchange for a review.
Antoinette Burney, a more than promising music student, is disappointed and furious when the famous concert pianist Lewis Freemont failed her in an exam, telling her forthrightly that she would never make the grade as a professional pianist.
She felt she could never forgive him, but then fate cruelly turns the tables. Antoinette becomes the innocent cause of the accident that, in destroying Lewis Freemont’s sight, destroys his career as well. Horrified and remorseful, when Antoinette has the chance to make some sort of amends – by becoming Lewis’s secretary – she seizes it, and in the process fell in love with him. But what would he do when, asinevitably he must, he discovered who she really was?
Nothing quite beats an old school romance, even if it is exceedingly predictable and cliche. Despite anticipating a lot of the drama in When Love is Blind and guessing the outcome, I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Perhaps because it offered the perfect piece of escapism from the dreary, political turmoil of the real world and also the endless murder and crime that I had been immersed myself in during Thriller February.
There’s an air of sophistication to these characters that just isn’t around anymore in more modern based novels. I especially loved how Burchell made Antoinette a headstrong and capable female character. With some old fashioned novels, the women can easily get portrayed as quite helpless or as the damsel in distress. Yet, Burchell strayed away from that making Antoinette match Lewis in her talent. She’s a capable heroine that I really identified with and loved reading about. She made mistakes and watching her web of lies slowly spiral out of control and tangle was nail biting stuff, but I admired the way she at least tried to make amends for what she’d done and showed genuine remorse.
The romance was enchanting. It’s dramatic, yes, and it can at times be cheesy. However, I think that’s what made me fall in love with it. My adoration for Toni and my gradual appreciation for Lewis, who doesn’t start out as the most likeable character, grew quite subtly that I hadn’t realised how far invested I was until Toni’s job and possible romance with Lewis was at peril. It must be said that despite all of Lewis’ faults there is something quite heartwarming about the fact his love for her was stronger than the grudges he held.
On the whole, I loved losing myself in this tale and highly recommend it if you’re a fan of period pieces. This might be a novel from 1967, but I think it’s a lovely romantic story for the ages. Readers who might prefer a more modern take may enjoy Kat French’s The Piano Man Project which you can read my musings on it and find more about it here.