Tag Archives: Elizabeth Hoyt

Release Day Review- The Duke of Pleasure by Elizabeth Hoyt

duke-of-pleasure

Title: Duke Of Pleasure (Maiden Lane Series, book #11)

Genre: Historical Romance/Georgian

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing, Nov. 2016

Source: Free for Review From the Publisher

Pages: 337

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon.com:         

IN THE ARMS OF DANGER Bold. Brave. Brutally handsome. Hugh Fitzroy, the Duke of Kyle, is the king’s secret weapon. Sent to defeat the notorious Lords of Chaos, he is ambushed in a London alley-and rescued by an unlikely ally: a masked stranger with the unmistakable curves of a woman.

IN THE HEAT OF DESIRE Cocky. Clever. Courageously independent. Alf has survived on the perilous streets of St. Giles by disguising her sex. By day she is a boy, dealing in information and secrets. By night she’s the notorious Ghost of St. Giles, a masked vigilante. But as she saves Hugh from assassins, she finds herself succumbing to temptation . . .

ONE KISS WILL CHANGE THEIR LIVES FOREVER When Hugh hires Alf to investigate the Lords of Chaos, her worlds collide. Once Hugh realizes that the boy and the Ghost are the same, will Alf find the courage to become the woman she needs to be-before the Lords of Chaos destroy them both?

***

Elizabeth Hoyt is the Queen of Dark Historical Romance.  This book is number eleven in the series and number twelve will be arriving in 2017.  That she can continue to keep us poised on the edge of our seat and gasping as we turn pages rapidly to find out what will happen next, is attributed to her fine command of the genre and her expertly rendered prose. Once again we are treated to fabulous entertainment. There is action, adventure and sizzling sexuality. This book will leave you enthralled with these characters for days.

Hugh Fitzroy, The Duke of Kyle is a warrior. He left his unfaithful wife and two sons for 3 years and only returned when she died.  He loves his sons and is trying to erase their fear of abandonment.  He is also charged, by the King, to unearth the identities of the monstrous cult called the Lords of Chaos.

Alf, has been disguised as a boy all her life.  This is the way she has survived in the slums of St. Giles. She is clever, athletic and is known to ferret out the most secretive information. For these reasons Hugh hires her to help find out who attempted to kill him. But Hugh does not know that Alf is a woman nor does he know that she is the celebrated avenger The Ghost of St. Giles. Although Alf looks like a youth, she is a woman of twenty-one and is instantly enamored with Hugh.

“ He turned his face a fraction and then she was drawing from his mouth. Inhaling all his hurts, all his needs, all the hopes he could never dream. This Man. This man she couldn’t have for her own.”

This is a standalone book with characters from previous books in the series as well as characters introduced who will appear in the next book, Duke of Desire. This is an outstanding addition to what has become a classic series of the genre.

The Maiden Lane Series by Elizabeth Hoyt:

  1. Wicked Intentions (Temperance and Lazarus)
  2. Notorious Pleasures (Hero and Griffin)
  3. Scandalous Desires (Silence and Mickey)
  4. Thief of Shadows (Isabel and Winter)
  5. Lord of Darkness (Megs and Godric)
  6. Duke of Midnight (Artemis and Maximus)
  7. Darling Beast (Lily and Apollo)
  8. Dearest rogue (Phoebe and Trevillion)
  9. Sweetest Scoundrel (Eve and Asa)
  10. Duke of Sin (Bridget and Val)

Once Upon a Moonlit Night (e-book only, novella)

  1. Duke of Pleasure ( Alf and Hugh)

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Release Day Review- Once Upon A Moonlit Night by Elizabeth Hoyt

Title: Once Upon A Moonlit Night (A Maiden Lane Novella)

Once Upon A Moonlit Night

Genre: Historical Romance/ Georgian

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Forever, July 5, 2016

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: Not available (Kindle 529 KB), $1.99

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from Amazon.com:

Hippolyta Royle is running for her life. Pursued by hounds on a cold rainy night, the heiress flags down a passing carriage and throws herself at the mercy of the coach’s occupant. Whoever this handsome traveler may be, he is her only hope to escape a terrible fate. But should he agree to escort her to safety, he’s in for much more than he bargained for . . . At first Matthew Mortimer doesn’t believe Hippolyta’s story, that she’s a fabulously wealthy heiress who’s been kidnapped. He assumes she’s a beggar, an actress, or worse. But once his new travel companion washes the mud from her surprisingly lovely face, and they share a breathtaking kiss, there is no turning back . . .

**

If you are a Maiden Lane Series reader then you know that Hippolyta was kidnapped by the Duke of Montgomery in the previous book, DUKE OF SIN.  This book opens with Hippolyta’s escape in the night.

If you are familiar with Ms. Hoyt’s Maiden Lane Series then you will agree with me that this just has to be a terrific read. I’m here to tell you that it certainly lives up to all expectations.  So why only a 4.5 star rating and not a 5 star rating? Because I’m being nit-picky! I loved this story, her daring escape from her kidnapper, the interaction between Hippolyta and Matthew and their progress from adversaries to lovers. But…I would have loved more, more, more.  Not that there isn’t Hoyt’s beautiful characterization and a thoroughly charming story. It is just that I never wanted it to end.

There are some side characters from previous books but they are icing on the cake for series readers and if you are new to the series you can start here and not be lost.  In fact I recommend you take the plunge with this reasonably priced novella and then I guarantee you will want to read the series.

.

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Advance Review- Duke of Sin by Elizabeth Hoyt

Title: Duke of Sin (Maiden Lane Series, book #10)

Duke of Sin

Genre: Historical Romance/ Georgian

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Grand Central, May 31, 2016

Pages: 368

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from Amazon.com:

A MAN OF SIN

Devastatingly handsome. Vain. Unscrupulous. Valentine Napier, the Duke of Montgomery, is the man London whispers about in boudoirs and back alleys. A notorious rake and blackmailer, Montgomery has returned from exile, intent on seeking revenge on those who have wronged him. But what he finds in his own bedroom may lay waste to all his plans.

A WOMAN OF HONOR

Born a bastard, housekeeper Bridget Crumb is clever, bold, and fiercely loyal. When her aristocratic mother becomes the target of extortion, Bridget joins the Duke of Montgomery’s household to search for the incriminating evidence-and uncovers something far more dangerous.

A SECRET THAT THREATENS TO DESTROY THEM BOTH

Astonished by the deceptively prim-and surprisingly witty-domestic spy in his chambers, Montgomery is intrigued. And try as she might, Bridget can’t resist the slyly charming duke. Now as the two begin their treacherous game of cat and mouse, they soon realize that they both have secrets-and neither may be as nefarious-or as innocent-as they appear . . .

**

This is book #10 in the Maiden Lane Series and it is a standalone novel and you could start here but for an especially satisfying treat why not start with the beginning of the series.  Still, if you are so inclined this book will get your blood pumping for whatever Ms. Hoyt can bring to life and you will not be lost if you read this one first.

Bridget Crumb is the bastard daughter of an aristocratic lady.  She is aware of her station in life and she owes whatever success she has received to her birth mother who has helped her to find a suitable position.  Therefore she is anxious to help her birth mother by retrieving evidence from Val’s house that he is using to blackmail the lady. But in her efforts she also discovers other evidence of his blackmailing and she is also determined to help that person also. But she sees in Val what she considers hints of humanity and is attracted to him

Valentine Napier is a criminal.  He is a blackmailer, murderer and thoroughly dissolute example of a human being.  Hoyt does a remarkable job of delving into the whys and wherefores of his psyche, what has led him to be this devastation of a man.  He is also handsome and can be charming and these are some of the reasons Bridget finds him so compelling.

I didn’t find Val totally redeemed in this book.  That is the usual outcome in Historical Romances.  There is no great epiphany on his part even though Bridget falls in love with him and tries to become his conscience. For this Hoyt is to be lauded.  She has given us a truly unlikable character who has some soft spots, he is not ALL bad and evil.  It is harder to understand Bridget who is the moral compass in this story and yet she persists when indicators show she should step out of the picture.

That this story arouses emotion, is full of desperate moments and superbly developed characters is reason to read and enjoy.  That it is also unique to the genre is reason enough to give it 5 stars.  To miss out on this book, or even this series is to truly be missing a milestone in Historical Romance.

For more on the Maiden Lane Series:

http://www.elizabethhoyt.com/maidenlane

 

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Recent Release Review- Sweetest Scoundrel by Elizabeth Hoyt

 

Title:  Sweetest Scoundrel (Maiden Lane Series, book #9)

Sweetest Scoundrel

Genre: Historical Romance/ Georgian

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Grand Central Pub., Nov 24, 2015

Pages: 359

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 5+

Description from Amazon.com:

SHE’S TAKING CHARGE Prim, proper, and thrifty, Eve Dinwoody is all business when it comes to protecting her brother’s investment. But when she agrees to control the purse strings of London’s premier pleasure garden, Harte’s Folly, she finds herself butting heads with an infuriating scoundrel who can’t be controlled.

HE’S RUNNING THE SHOW Bawdy and bold, Asa Makepeace doesn’t have time for a penny-pinching prude like Eve. As the garden’s larger-than-life owner, he’s already dealing with self-centered sopranos and temperamental tenors. He’s not about to let an aristocratic woman boss him around . . . no matter how enticing she is.

BUT LOVE CONQUERS ALL In spite of her lack of theatrical experience-and her fiery clashes with Asa-Eve is determined to turn Harte’s Folly into a smashing success. But the harder she tries to manage the stubborn rake, the harder it is to ignore his seductive charm and raw magnetism. There’s no denying the smoldering fire between them-and trying to put it out would be the greatest folly of all . . .

**

Another delightful addition to the Maiden Lane series.  Eve Dinwoody has a secret in her past that still causes her anxiety.  Asa Makepeace has a past that is also fraught with problems and a present that continues with problems.  Problems that may cause his death or Eve’s death.  She is a sheltered woman and he is a rogue businessman.  Two who are polar opposites.

Hoyt always gives us a gritty interpretation of the Georgian era in Britain. This series delves into the dark side of the era with erotic images and nefarious characters; always well written.  With bigger than life heroes such as Asa and realistic heroines such as Eve, two troubled characters who find love with each other. The love scenes are definitely erotic.  The side characters, human and animal, are well drawn and add to the plot. The sprinkling of characters from previous books is welcome and adds a sense of family to the plot.

I highly recommend this book as a standalone novel but I also suggest you treat yourself to this wonderfully written series.

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Release Day Review- Dearest Rogue by Elizabeth Hoyt

Title: Dearest Rogue (Maiden Lane Series)

Dearest Rogue

Genre: Historical Romance/Georgian

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Vision, May 26, 2015

Pages:347

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating:  5

Description from the author:   

 HE CAN GUARD HER
Lady Phoebe Batten is pretty, vivacious, and yearning for a social life befitting the sister of a powerful duke. But because she is almost completely blind, her overprotective brother insists that she have an armed bodyguard by her side at all times—the very irritating Captain Trevillion.

FROM EVERY DANGER
Captain James Trevillion is proud, brooding, and cursed with a leg injury from his service in the King’s dragoons. He can still shoot and ride like the devil, however, so watching over the distracting Lady Phoebe should be no problem at all—until she’s targeted by kidnappers.

BUT PASSION ITSELF
Caught in a deadly web of deceit, Captain Trevillion must risk life and limb to save his charge from the lowest of cads—one who would force Lady Phoebe into a loveless marriage. But when Trevillion rescues her, bringing her to his seaside home in Cornwall, Phoebe begins to see the tender man beneath the hard soldier’s exterior—and a searing passion that puts both their hearts at risk.

**

In this, the latest installment in Hoyt’s Maiden Lane Series, we are not treated to as much of the underbelly of that nefarious ST. Giles area of London as in previous books in the series, but there is still much adventure and action.  Lady Phoebe Batten is twenty-one, raised in a sheltered environment and has slowly been going totally blind since she was fifteen years old.  She has been cosseted and protected by her brother the Duke and as such she can be naïve and willful.  Captain James Trevillion  has been hired by the Duke to guard Phoebe when she is out of the Ducal residence.  This constant guard is often annoying and feels restrictive to Phoebe.  Even after a kidnapping attempt she is still  struggling to be free and independent.

Ms. Hoyt captures the readers attention immediately with her ability to create heart stopping action.  Then the reader is forced to rapidly turn pages to find out who the villain might be and will so much interaction between James and Phoebe lead to romance. Red herrings abound and not everything is what it at first appears.

I have enjoyed all of the Maiden Lane Series novels and this one is no exception.  There are wonderfully developed characters both protagonists and side characters.  We are given glimpses of characters from past books and introduced to new characters who will get a book in the future. Captain Trevillion we have met in the past and reading his story has been very rewarding.  This is a standalone novel but I do recommend the entire series.

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Recent Release Review- Duke of Midnight by Elizabeth Hoyt

Title: Duke of Midnight

Duke of Midnight

 Genre: Historical Romance (Georgian)

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing, Oct. 2013

Source: purchase

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from Amazon.com:

WHEN A MASKED MAN . . .

Twenty years ago Maximus Batten witnessed the brutal murders of his parents. Now the autocratic Duke of Wakefield, he spends his days ruling Parliament. But by night, disguised as the Ghost of St. Giles, he prowls the grim alleys of St. Giles, ever on the hunt for the murderer. One night he finds a fiery woman who meets him toe-to-toe-and won’t back down . . .

MEETS HIS MATCH . . .

Artemis Greaves toils as a lady’s companion, but hiding beneath the plain brown serge of her dress is the heart of a huntress. When the Ghost of St. Giles rescues her from footpads, she recognizes a kindred spirit-and is intrigued. She’s even more intrigued when she realizes who exactly the notorious Ghost is by day . . .

DESIRE IGNITES A DANGEROUS PASSION

Artemis makes a bold move: she demands that Maximus use his influence to free her imprisoned brother-or she will expose him as the Ghost. But blackmailing a powerful duke isn’t without risks. Now that she has the tiger by the tail, can she withstand his ire-or the temptation of his embrace?

**

There is nothing to say but that Elizabeth Hoyt has done it again.  This sixth installment in the Maiden Lane Series is chock-a-block full of Hoyt’s brilliant characterization and drama filled plot.  Maximus, the Duke of Wakefield, is filled with a sense of duty, honor and guilt over perceived a wrong doing and obsessively seeks revenge  to give himself peace.  Artemis is on a mission to free her wrongfully confined brother and needs help.  They are thrown together and fall into a romance that neither wants but that neither can deny.  This is a sensuous story of love and sacrifice that will keep the reader turning pages deep into the night.

This is a standalone novel but I suggest you read the entire series for insight into all the characters and a real treat.

The Maiden Lane Series:

  1. Wicked      Intentions (Temperance & Lord Caire)
  2. Notorious      Pleasures (Hero & Griffen)
  3. Scandalous      Desires (Silence & Mickey)
  4. Theif of      Shadows ( Winter & Isabel)
  5. Lord of      Darkness (Megs & Godric)
  6. Duke of      Midnight (Artemis & Maximus)

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Review- Lord of Darkness by Elizabeth Hoyt

Title:  Lord of Darkness (Book #4, Maiden Lane Series)

Lord of Darkness

Genre:  Historical Romance

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Grand Central Pub., 2013

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from amazon.com:

He lives in the shadows. As the mysterious masked avenger known as the Ghost of St. Giles, Godric St. John’s only goal is to protect the innocent of London. Until the night he confronts a fearless young lady pointing a pistol at his head-and realizes she is his wife . . .
Lady Margaret Reading has vowed to kill the Ghost of St. Giles-the man who murdered her one true love. Returning to London, and to the man she hasn’t seen since their wedding day, Margaret does not recognize the man behind the mask. Fierce, commanding, and dangerous, the notorious Ghost of St. Giles is everything she feared he would be-and so much more . . .
When passion flares, these two intimate strangers can’t keep from revealing more of themselves than they had ever planned. But when Margaret learns the truth-that the Ghost is her husband-the game is up and the players must surrender . . . to the temptation that could destroy them both.

**Godric St. John, The Ghost of St Giles, is definitely a hero.  He has championed and avenged the downtrodden.  He has a tortured past and has grieved for his true love lost to a wasting disease.  He has been blackmailed into this marriage with Megs and for two years since their wedding day, has not seen her although she writes to him from his country estate frequently.

Megs, has also lost her true love to murder.  She comes to London for two reasons, to find her love’s murderer and to seduce her husband into giving her a longed for child.

The story is beautifully played out with both our hero and heroine heartbroken and discovering that they can love again.

This is a most unique and delicious series and this, the fifth book, is as wonderful as the ones that went before.  Hoyt has a mastery of plot and characters that invites the reader to experience the atmosphere of eighteenth century London.  The couple comes together in a most believable manner; both reluctant at first and then discovering a passion that they thought would never exist between them.  I highly recommend this novel and this series to all those who like a dose of realism with their historical romance. There is catch-your-breath action and sizzling romantic sensuality.  Each book can stand alone but do treat yourself to this entire series.

The Maiden Lane Series:

  1. Wicked Intentions (Temperance & Lord Caire)
  2. Notorious Pleasures (Hero & Griffen)
  3. Scandalous Desires (Silence & Mickey)
  4. Theif of Shadows ( Winter & Isabel)
  5. Lord of Darkness (Megs & Godric)
  6. Duke of Midnight (coming Oct. 2013)

 

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Review- To Seduce A Sinner by Elizabeth Hoyt

Title: To Seduce A Sinner (book #2, The Legend of The Four Soldiers Series)

Genre: Historical Romance/Georgian Era

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Forever, 2008

Source: purchase

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from amazon.com:

Jasper Renshaw, Viscount Vale, has a problem: he needs to marry and produce an heir to the title. All Jasper wants is to find a lady who will put up with him long enough to wed so he can retreat to his life of debauchery–a life that keeps the haunting memories of his past at bay. Knowing that Jasper is under pressure to marry, Melisande Flemming grasps her fate with both hands and volunteers to wed him. Although Jasper is initially only interested in producing an heir, he soon becomes entranced by his wife–prim and proper by day, wanton by night– and vows to learn her secrets.

Melissande, however, is determined to keep her husband at a distance. She has loved, and lost, before, and will do anything to keep him from learning her terrible weakness: she’s secretly been in love with him for years. But to her chagrin, her husband pursues her, wooing her as if she were a paramour, not his lady wife. As Melissande and Jasper embark on a passionate game of cat and mouse, secrets from the past begin to resurface…. threatening to tear them asunder.

**

Once again Hoyt has master crafted a tale that grows from a marriage of convenience to sublimely sensual devotion, at the same time intriguing us with a mystery and secrets that could prove disastrous.  For the hero, Hoyt crafts a character study in Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as it might appear in the Georgian Era.  It is also a glimpse into the social mores of that era.  There is action and pathos and sizzling sensuality.  There are references and some  graphic description of torture and violence that some may find disturbing although integral to the story.

The ending was a bit of a letdown.  I thought it could have been handled differently although it did fit in with the story.  Elizabeth Hoyt is a master story teller and although I have read this book out of order in the series, It was not necessary for me to have read what came before in order to enjoy the read.  I can’t wait to read the rest of this series.

The Legend of the Four Soldiers Series:

1. To Taste Temptation (Smauel Hartley’s story)

2. To Seduce a Sinner (Jasper Renshaw’s story)

3. To Beguile a Beast (Alistair Monroe’s story)

4. To Desire a Devil (Ranaud St. Aubyn’s story)

 

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Review- Thief of Shadows (#4, Maiden Lane Series) by Elizabeth Hoyt

Title:  Thief of Shadows (Book #4 Maiden Lane Series)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Grand Central, 2012

Source: Purchase

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from amazon.com:

MASKED MAN . . .

Winter Makepeace lives a double life. By day he’s the stoic headmaster of a home for foundling children. But the night brings out a darker side of Winter. As the moon rises, so does the Ghost of St. Giles-protector, judge, fugitive. When the Ghost, beaten and wounded, is rescued by a beautiful aristocrat, Winter has no idea that his two worlds are about to collide.

A DANGEROUS WOMAN . . .

Lady Isabel Beckinhall enjoys nothing more than a challenge. Yet when she’s asked to tutor the Home’s dour manager in the ways of society-flirtation, double-entendres, and scandalous liaisons-Isabel can’t help wondering why his eyes seem so familiar-and his lips so tempting.

A PASSION NEITHER COULD DENY

During the day Isabel and Winter engage in a battle of wills. At night their passions are revealed . . . But when little girls start disappearing from St. Giles, Winter must avenge them. For that he might have to sacrifice everything-the Home, Isabel . . . and his life.

**

Not only is Winter leading a double life in this installment of the Maiden Lane Series but I am led to think he has a serious split-personality disorder.  He seems to divide his personality into the bookish, mild mannered Winter Makepeace and the roguish Ghost of St. Giles.  Perhaps I’ve got it wrong and he is more a Georgian Era Batman. Any way you look at it he makes for a good read.

Others have liked that Winter was virginal and Lady Isabel was the experienced lover.  I wasn’t as fond of this aspect.  Just personal preference I think.  Lady Isabel was the aggressor and seducer but Winter was long overdue for sexual ruination historical style.

I enjoyed this installment of the series as well as those that came before.  Elizabeth Hoyt has given us a superbly constructed series that creates  a feeling of historical accuracy as well sizzling romance in each book.

I  recommend this book and each in the Maiden Lane Series. (Reviews on this blog, insert “Elizabeth Hoyt” in the “Search” box in the left hand column.)

Maiden Lane Series:

#1 Wicked Intentions

#2 Notorious Pleasures

#3 Scandalous Desires

#4 Thief of Shadows

#5 Lord of Darkness (coming Feb. 2013)

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Review- The Raven Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt

Title: The Raven Prince

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt

Publisher: Warner, 2006

Source: Secondary market purchase

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from amazon.com:

Widowed Anna Wren is having a wretched day. After an arrogant man on horseback nearly crushes her, she arrives home to learn that she is in dire financial straits.

THERE COMES A TIME IN A LADY’S LIFE

The Earl of Swartingham is in a quandary. Having frightened off two secretaries, Edward de Raaf needs someone who can withstand his bad temper and boorish behavior.

WHEN SHE MUST DO THE UNTHINKABLE . . .

When Anna becomes the earl’s secretary, it would seem that both their problems are solved. But when she discovers he plans to visit the most notorious brothel in London, she sees red-and decides to assuage her desires . . .

**

As with any Elizabeth Hoyt novel I have read this one is also well written.  Ms Hoyt can breathe life into her characters and we can see them carrying out the story in our mind’s eye.

The earl is insecure about his looks because he has a pock marked face.  This causes him to doubt that anyone can love him.  Anna is capable of looking beyond his disfigurement to see the honorable man but Anna thinks that she is too far below his station to even think of a romance.  The brothel masquerade is her solution to her desires.

This is a very good read but I have to confess I did have trouble wrapping my mind around a regency era gentlewoman wantonly comporting herself in a brothel.  So if you can suspend disbelief in this instance then this book will probably rate even higher with you than it does with me.  All in all a good story.

 

 

 

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