Smite Turner, the third Turner brother, is a damaged man. Ordinarily, that makes for some great romance writing.
In the third outing by Courtney Milan in the world of the Brothers Turner, the spotlight shines on middle brother Smite. In my review of Turner #1, I made mention of “[glossing] over the implications of severe neglect and outright child abuse also visited upon her children by the mother. Because it is upsetting.” Smite appears to have borne the brunt of this abuse, and I won’t go into it, because it is upsetting.
Anyway, as an adult, he is a magistrate, known for actually doing his job properly in a time when magistrate was a notional title, and the scars (metaphysical) from his childhood make relationships or cohabiting out of the question.
Usually at this point, we are introduced to a lovely young woman who cures the knight of tarnished armour with the power of her love and devotion.
Instead, we have a young lady of (surprisingly) good repute who piques our hero’s interest by parading in his courtroom as a variety of witnesses, ordered there by a shadowy underworld figure (the novel stretches credulity on this matter). They fall in love, of course, but Smite stays broken.
I kind of admire him (and Milan) for that.
Smite is an interesting character, but his romance failed to hold my interest. Maybe I just want my damaged characters to be healed and live happily ever after, with lots of tastefully raunchy vanilla sex, none of this realism stuff.