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Written on Your Skin

3.83  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,658 Ratings  ·  141 Reviews

Beauty, charm, wealthy admirers: Mina Masters enjoys every luxury but freedom. To save herself from an unwanted marriage, she turns her wiles on a darkly handsome stranger. But Mina's would be hero is playing his own deceptive game. A British spy, Phin Granville has no interest in emotional entanglements ... until the night Mina sav
Mass Market Paperback, 357 pages
Published July 28th 2009 by Pocket Books
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Dec 18, 2009 Barbara rated it it was amazing
5 Stars...I LOVED it!!!

..."He had a great deal of potential, and her body wanted to realize it all for herself. He seemed to feel it as well, for his hand began to linger and his expression grew sober, despite the merriment all around. When the fiddle slowed, his hands did not release her. In the small space between their bodies, a current was building that brought her closer to him; she could not move away even if the world rushed in between them. A warm breeze scudded through the crowd, perfum
Aug 04, 2009 Rane rated it really liked it
Shelves: victorian-era
Life in a golden cage has worn thin for Mina Masters as she forced into a unwanted marriage, thinking to disgrace herself enough to avoid matrimony she sets her sights on the american Mr.Monroe who also happens to be a British spy Phin Granville. Phin charged to go after an arms dealer who happens to be Mina stepfather, but when he’s poisoned, it’s up to Mina to save him. After getting away, four years later, Phin has a title to rid himself and getting out of the game of espionage, but when a l ...more
Jane Stewart
Feb 04, 2012 Jane Stewart rated it did not like it
90% of the book felt like filler - ponderings, and descriptions. Plot developments not shown. Weak vague dialogue.

Mina’s stepfather Collins was doing something illegal in Hong Kong. Phin was working undercover to catch Collins. Someone poisoned Phin’s drink and he collapsed. Mina took him to a room to recover and helped him escape. Phin worked for Ridland at that time. Four years later Collins escaped British authorities. Ridland imprisons Mina in a locked hotel room thinking she can
Jul 30, 2009 Katie(babs) rated it it was amazing
My expectations are very high when it comes to a Meredith Duran books. The romances she pens do not have a simple storyline where boy meets girl, they go on an adventures and their happily ever is pretty much a given. Written on Your Skin is a gut retching journey, not only for the two main characters but for the reader. I hardly ever cry while I read and I did with Written on Your Skin. *Shakes fist at Meredith*. Written on Your Skin is a beautiful, all encompassing experience. Meredith makes s ...more
Feb 03, 2010 Samantha rated it it was ok
Shelves: historical
I hate to give this book two stars but it was really hard to get through. While it is well written and the author clearly knows what she is talking about it, it was boring. I don't know if it is because I read so many good reviews that I hyped it up too much in mind or what. I couldn't feel the romance in the book. It took too long for me to understand why the characters should be together. There was also alot of inner dialogue. I love to know what the characters in a story is thinking about but ...more
Aug 17, 2009 Verity rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.

This one was a tough one. Something about it just sits not-quite-right with me. I think part of it is that the author tried too hard to integrate this story with Bound by Your Touch. The timelines don't quite mesh. I actually grabbed BbYT right after I finished this one, to reread the scene where Lydia (the heroine of that book) met Mina (the heroine of this book). And the timeline is just all kinds of off. Their conversation would imply that Mina was still a prisoner in Phin's house, b
Kim H
Jul 31, 2009 Kim H rated it really liked it
Shelves: keeper
While I ultimately enjoyed this book, it's another one that I find difficult to categorize. I think Meredith Duran is a brilliant writer, but once again, I feel like she's holding back. I hate to keep harping about it, but Duke of Shadows was such an amazingly unique & original book, and as was (IMO) the case with Bound by Your Touch, Duran appears to squandering her talents on stories she should be able to write in her sleep.
I don't have a problem with spy romances per se. Certainly, I hav
Aug 01, 2009 Nisha rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who are looking for more from a romance novel
The writing is amazing and the characters are deep and plot is definitely unique. It's a great novel, if you are in a mood for something angsty and deep. Mina is hard to actually relate to, considering her thoughts and background, but she is quite likable, considering that she fought to be where she is but still has a heart. Phin, in all ways but one, is the perfect brooding man. His demons linked with his opium addiction. It is a theme that I would never consider workable, but obviously it did. ...more
As I write, I just finished this book and I'm already planning a second fix. I made the mistake of starting it this morning and there went my whole day. I managed to distractedly gulp down a breakfast cum lunch at dinner time. Finally I find a book that I’m not ashamed to mention in the same sentence as 'the Duke of Shadows'. Seriously, I was beginning to give up on Meredith Duran after 3 previous failed attempts. I was inclined to think that the first love had just been a fluke. So it feels gr ...more
Jun 30, 2015 Noura rated it it was amazing
It is seldom that you get a historical romance heroine that is intelligent, wily, determined, and so contemporary in her thinking without painting her as an annoying, over the top character that bulldozes her way through the males in the story. This story features such a heroine and i just love her! Mina Masters is very beautiful society miss, practical in her ways and cunning in getting what she wants underneath her fluffy-flighty exterior (It's refreshing to read a story that features a woman ...more
.þµŋψà. [Punya Reviews...]
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Suzie Quint
Oct 13, 2011 Suzie Quint rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: historical romance readers
I read a review of this that made me hesitant to read it. I should have just ignored the review. I love this book. I love that the heroine isn't the typical feisty heroine who gets in over her head and needs the hero to rescue her. She actually fights the hero to play an active role in her life because she doesn't want to be "protected." By the end, they see each other clearly and love each other not just for their strengths, but for their faults as well. That's damned seductive. The best Meredi ...more
May 04, 2010 Ilze rated it liked it
Shelves: meredith-duran
I was quite disappointed with this book, considering the high rating it currently has. I liked the 2 main characters but the other characters were totally undeveloped. The plot was quite convoluted and for most of the book I could not figure out what the characters were doing or why they were doing it. Things that should have been explained early on were finally mentioned near the end of the book (e.g. why Phin hated the dreaded spymaster). Way too many loose ends, non-sequiturs and red herrings ...more
Celestita Giron
Si me dan a escoger entre la lírica de sus libros históricos y los libros contemporáneos, me inclino ante los historicos. ¡Amo! como los narra, profundos y sentimentales. Esta autora describe la personalidad como si realmente hubieran existido personajes así. Y la lírica esta en su medida justa, ni exagerada, ni pobre.
Really high quality historical romance. Not surprisingly, both the characters and the story were well drawn out and developed. And even though the characters themselves had personalities and qualities that I couldn't relate to, they were both understandable and they felt real.
Emma Hillman
Jul 12, 2010 Emma Hillman rated it did not like it
Shelves: gave-up-on-it
DNF. I've been struggling for days now and I just don't want to pick it up again and finish it. I don't care what happens to the characters...and how bad is that?
Sep 28, 2015 Sunny rated it really liked it
I liked her a very great deal. I love a female entrepreneur (wish we had seen more of that part of her life) and adore a woman who gets ahead in part by playing just as dumb blonde as men automatically assume her to be. Clever girl.

He was all right, but I did not see any very great difference between him and several other of her heroes.

As always, there a few little bits of historic research woven into the story that were riveting. In this case, see page 80 in the paperback on what people in Th
Jun 02, 2011 Karen rated it really liked it
Duran's books have two elements I've come to expect from her and have quite enjoyed: first, she travels well beyond European shores (in this case, the book begins with the expat community of Hong Kong), and secondly, the mood of her stories tends to be a little darker than you might expect from the typical historical spy-romance. In this story, we have Phin-- a spy with a natural flair for his work who never wanted to be in the Game (he is not at all proud to know he has a talent for killing and ...more
Sandy Williams
Jun 05, 2010 Sandy Williams rated it it was amazing
I cannot say enough about this author. She's brilliant. Her stories are sweet, exciting, and excruciating and her writing is brilliant. I don't usually notice an author's writing unless it's bad. I'm the kind of reader who just wants to know the story. I want the words to disappear when I read. Meredith Duran's words don't disappear: they come alive. I can open to almost any page in her book and find a line or two of brilliance.

I'll be honest. When I began reading this book, I didn't think I'd
Oct 09, 2009 TheBookSmugglers rated it really liked it
Full Review Link

Written On Your Skin is the second book by Meredith Duran to be published in less than two months and it is equally as good, if not more, as its predecessor, Bound By Your Touch.

At its core Written On Your Skin is a simple story with a simple plot. Four years ago, in Hong Kong, A woman helps a man to escape certain death. He is indebted to her. Four years later, now in London, she requires his help in finding her mother.

What is complex is the characterisation of these two people.
Mar 04, 2012 Abby rated it did not like it
Shelves: romance
In brief: Hong Kong, 1880: Mina Masters is young, beautiful and utterly trapped by convention and social expectation. Her abusive step father, Collins, is involved in some illegal dealings. British spy and former mapmaker Phineas Granville is there to provide evidence and throw Collins behind bars ... Four years later the scene switches to England and Mina is again in danger from Collins. Phin reluctantly steps up to help her. Distrust and deception abound as these two try to reconcile their att ...more
Sara ♥
Aug 10, 2011 Sara ♥ rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance, historical, 2011
Oh, gosh. Mina and Phin. I remember liking them. I know I jotted down some notes about this book, but I can't find the scrap of paper! Grrr! Let me brainstorm a bit.

- Mina is white-blonde and acts like a ditz so people won't suspect how intelligent she is. She has an evil stepfather. They were in Hong Kong, for some reason, and Phin was pretending to be an American working undercover (he's a mapmaker-turned-spy-assassin) trying to get step-dad..... And he gets found out and almost dies (poison).
Feb 03, 2013 Jill rated it it was ok
This one just didn't do it for me. It rambled way too much, was confusing, and kept the reader in the dark for too long. I felt like it was trying to be smart, sophisticated, and witty, but fell far short of this lofty goal. Instead it was confusing, and well, rambling. The copy I had stated on the back that it was the sequel to "Bound by Your Touch," but really, Sanburne only show up a few times and it seems as though they are parallel in time, rather than this one taking place after BBYT, whic ...more
Apr 11, 2016 Natalya rated it really liked it
Shelves: nook
Another great male lead - physically memorable with his long eyelashes and feline grace. He has a tortured conscience of an ex spy which he tries to blunt with drugs and alcohol. He is a fine honed killing machine. She is his worthy match in her desperation, manipulation and play acting. She challenges him and absolves him. Duran throws away the conventions, take the sexual encounters, for example, instead of the expected pinnacles of success for the characters togetherness, they are exploratory ...more
Dec 28, 2015 Indigo_jo rated it it was ok
Verdict: OK, so-so, neither bad nor brilliant.

The cover is so romancy! I find this amusing. Anyway, I decided to branch out my romance reading from Tessa Dare’s excellent regency romances and came up with Meredith Duran’s spy/romance novel set in the 1880s.

I loved the female lead, Mina, who is a sharp, independent businesswoman under a disarming layer of frothy girlishness she uses to manipulate men. I found the male lead, Phin, to be a bit…meh? My total historical romance novel experience is li
Sep 15, 2015 Libre rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Im Nachfolger von Rühr nicht an mein dunkles Herz geht es um die Amerikanerin Mina Masters, die für die Rettung ihrer Mutter eine alte Schuld bei dem englischen Spion Phineas Granville einlösen möchte.

Der Schreibstil ist wie im Vorgängerband flüssig. Dieses Mal zieht sich die Handlung jedoch leider sehr hin. Der Zwang der Hauptfiguren ständig in Rätseln zu sprechen, wird spätestens ab der Hälfte des Buches lächerlich, wenn nicht gar nervig, und lässt das Lesen leidig werden. Obwohl sich die beid
Kristen Lacons
Oct 22, 2012 Kristen Lacons rated it did not like it
I could not, for the life of me, get into this book. I found myself drifting as I read sentence after boring, eventful sentence that once it finally got to an "action" scene I found it, at best, to be mildly gripping, however I had no idea what happened to cause the actions. The plot was lost on me (as I said I could not focus!!!) and considering all the fantastic reviews I'd heard about Duran and her writing, I was highly disappointed.
Kid Disaster
Aug 04, 2015 Kid Disaster rated it really liked it
omg -- i love it when a romance novel isn't trash! this was a great read, even if i didn't especially love Mina, her spy more than made up for it.

meredith, i'll be reading more of your novels!
Jill Myles
Jul 29, 2009 Jill Myles rated it it was amazing
Another success from Meredith Duran. Initially I had misgivings on Phin (who we knew to be an opium smoker) and Mina (who we thought was an idiotic flirt). But both characters are not what we assume them to be, and they are intense. Loved this. I thought this was a fair shot closer to the deep emotionalism of Duke of Shadows that Duran seems to do really well.

It really was a lovely read.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Mar 05, 2015 10:29AM  
  • Black Silk
  • Indiscreet
  • Untie My Heart
  • Revealed (The Blue Raven, #1)
  • His at Night
  • If His Kiss Is Wicked (Grantham, #3)
  • My Lord and Spymaster (Spymasters, #2)
  • Surrender of a Siren (The Wanton Dairymaid Trilogy, #2)
  • The Dream Hunter
  • Like No Other Lover (Pennyroyal Green, #2)
  • Lady Of The Knight (Knights, #3;  The Brocade #4)
  • My Dearest Enemy
  • Proof by Seduction (Carhart, #1)
  • To Have and To Hold (Wyckerley Trilogy, #2)
MEREDITH DURAN grew up enamored of British history. At thirteen years old, she made a list of life goals that included writing romance novels, trying sushi, and going to London to see Holbein’s portrait of Anne Boleyn. Now she is happy to report that all three goals have become her favorite things to do. When not studying, doing fieldwork in India, or working on her next novel, Meredith can be fou ...more
More about Meredith Duran...

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“—that if she touched him right now, their flesh would recognize each other. The wildest thought: these scars, his and hers, would speak to each other, communicating intimacies that could not be unshared.” 5 likes
“She had told herself she should be reassured by his squeamishness; a man who balked at scars would not give her new ones. Now she suddenly wondered if she’d had it wrong. A man without scars would always underestimate their value. He would not see them as marks of courage.” 3 likes
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