cover image Beyond the Sunrise

Beyond the Sunrise

Mary Balogh. Onyx Books, $4.99 (384pp) ISBN 978-0-451-40342-1

Balogh's ( The Secret Pearl ) new epic love story is a winner. In 1799 in England, the illegitimate 17-year-old son of an English marquess meets a 15-year-old French countess at a ball; they fall in love but--because of their respective social status--are forced to part. Eleven years later, they meet again at another ball, this time in Lisbon. Robert Blake is now a captain with the British army and widow Joana da Fonte is Marquesa das Minas. Although only one recognizes the other, both fall in love again. The part each plays in the French-Iberian conflict, however, appears to conspire against their happy ending. Their differing stations in life are also still an issue, as Robert warns Joana: `` . . . no bridge . . . can connect our lives . . . permanently. Neither of us would be happy in the other's world once the first gloss had worn off our passion for each other.'' The way in which Balogh resolves her story makes for absorbing reading right up until the end. (Nov.)