This is a dense, lushly romantic story. However, since I assign stars based solely on how much I enjoyed a book, I have to give this one only three. It's an engaging premise, and there's a lot of plot, but the first half -- as Meriel and Dominic were getting acquainted was just too slow. I skimmed huge parts of it. I must give MJP credit, though, for managing to handle having a mute heroine so adeptly. I didn't feel that I was missing out on dialogue.
Things pick up in the second half, and I thoroughly enjoyed that part.
I also have to give MJP credit for doing something that romance novels rarely do to me: I shed a tear of two over the (secondary) romance of Kyle and Constancia.