Kurland, Lynn. The More I See You. New York: Berkley, 1999. ISBN-13: 978-0-425-17107-3. Print List Price: $7.99.
This is the first of Kurland’s de Piaget books I read, and I found that while it did have some of the same magic and worldbuilding as the MacLeod book I read, I found myself a bit confused at some points, due to the fact that the de Piagets started off as a much less linear/chronological than the MacLeods, and her helpful family tree only assisted in confusing me a bit more. And at various points in the book, I found the story dragging and becoming tedious, to the point where I almost gave up on it once or twice.
Jessica didn’t really grab me as a heroine. I never really understood what there was about her to like, other than the fact that, to medieval lords, she’s something of a novelty, with her ideas for human rights and such. Plus, she spent quite a lot of the book getting injured or captured.
But Richard is a redeeming feature in a novel that could have otherwise been rather forgettable. I love how complex he is as a character, especially the fact that Kurland didn’t try to make him into an anachronistic feminist, the way some historical heroes are. He is chivalrous, yes, and he is never physically violent towards women, but prior to falling for Jessica, he has very traditional values about women’s roles in society, and it takes meeting Jessica to accept that women don’t have to be limited to activities like cooking and sewing.
I also found myself wondering if there was any further resolution between Richard and Hugh. After Hugh’s final confrontation with Richard where he tried and failed to kill Jessica, they seem to just part ways and Hugh is never heard from again. And how does Lord Henry de Galtres, who one would assume is a modern descendant of one of them, fit in? Was Jessica being invited in the present time in the beginning by her own descendant?