Five books into her Maiden Lane series and Elizabeth Hoyt is still on top of her game! Godric St. John married Lady Margaret to help her out of a toug...moreFive books into her Maiden Lane series and Elizabeth Hoyt is still on top of her game! Godric St. John married Lady Margaret to help her out of a tough situation and it seemed to fit for him. Megs would live in the country away from him and he could continue with his nightly duties as the Ghost of St.Giles. This works well until Megs, and part of his family, descend upon him and turn his life upside down when Megs tells him he wants a child. Having married and lost the great love of his life, Godric is not too keen of this plan but concedes to it with a bargain of his own. Megs being around causes new feelings to emerge, not just for himself but she also makes him confront his issues with his family. Megs for her part, also lost the great love of her life and does not want to feel when she is with Godric but as his secrets are revealed, the true force of their relationship is tested.
I have been a huge fan of this series and I was not sure what to expect from this book but I should never have doubted. I loved it. Godric is strong, patient and sexy and I loved seeing his flaws come out and be played out and strengthened with the help of Megs. Megs is full of life and happiness and is determined to have a child with her husband, no matter the cost. I did get a bit frustrated with her during her first bedroom encounters with Godric as she had a hard time letting go of her past, yet she expected Godric to do that with his own past. But Godric cleared up that matter quickly and I loved that! We again get a bit of a mystery in St. Giles but it did not take away from the growing love between Godric and Megs, if anything it helped force the feelings front and center. The St. Giles storyline is a bit similar to the previous book but it did allow up to catch up with almost all the previous couples as a result (no Mickey and Silence though). Ms Hoyt expertly weaves in the characters for the next book, Duke of Midnight, and I already want that book now! The love scenes are passion filled and you could really see how they helped this couple find the love that they thought they would never have again. This is a passionate, lovely, emotional romance that is one of my favorite reads so far this year (as if there really was any doubt). 4 1/2 stars
Review copy provided by Grand Central Publishing via netgalley(less)
Winter Makepeace is pleased to finally have a new building for his Home for Unfortunate Infants and Foundling Children but he is still a bit restless...moreWinter Makepeace is pleased to finally have a new building for his Home for Unfortunate Infants and Foundling Children but he is still a bit restless so when he hears of a 'lassie snatcher' he sets about to find out all he can and stop them. As his alter ego, the Ghost of St. Giles, he learns what he can about the orphaned girls being forced to work in horrible conditions with no fresh air and rotten food. As he tries to save these girls, his day job starts to give him a distraction in the form of one Lady Isabel Beckinhill. Some members of her Ladies' Syndicate for the Benefit of the Home for Unfortunate Infants and Foundling Children feel that Mr. Makepeace is not an appropriate headmaster for the foundling children now that they have wealthy matrons supporting them and Isabel is chosen to teach Winter the refining points of being a gentleman. However, as these two do not always see eye to eye, passions rise between heated banter and Winter tries to keep a rein on his inner demons and protect all the innocents of St. Giles without giving in to his desires.
Isabel Beckinhill shocks herself when she suddenly rescues the mysterious, supposedly deadly, Ghost of St. Giles. But just as quick as they can sew him up he is gone, leaving a lasting impression behind. When her instructional meetings with Winter start awakening her passions, she starts to question how Winter seems to be missing when he should be present and the Ghost is around instead. A daring escape finally forces her to confront the Ghost and together they answer questions and give into the blazing passion between them. But with Isabel having a sad secret and Winter unable to give up being the Ghost, how will this unlikely couple find happiness?
Sigh, what a book. Winter. He seemed so uptight in the previous books but trust Elizabeth Hoyt to turn that all around and make a delicious, sexy, strong, loyal, protective hero. And to top it all off... ***minor spoiler--he's a virgin!*** Swoon. And Isabel, again I wasn't too sure about her in the previous books, but she turns out to be the perfect woman (slightly older!) woman for Winter. I loved watching Winter wrestle with himself as he tries to protect all those that can not protect themselves in St. Giles. As he believes that this is his life work, he knows he has no time for a wife and family but then there is Isabel at every turn, tempting him, making him question if it is right for one person to uphold all this by himself. When he finally lets Isabel in, it is forever and he will stop at nothing to convince Isabel of that fact. Elizabeth Hoyt has one again proven why she is on my auto buy list--she can take a woman not well liked, who seems cold and bitter (there is a side story with a young boy that is so well done) and shape her into a warm, caring, lovable heroine who will do whatever it takes to be with the man she loves. And while Ms Hoyt is crafting this heroine, she delivers a hero who is the perfect balance, who brings the love and passion and even some daring stubbornness to meld together beautifully all while set amongst the dirty side of London, away from the balls and glitter, make you feel like you are there with them. This is another passionate winner from the obviously talented, top of her game, Elizabeth Hoyt and I am so happy there is more to come in this Maiden Lane series! 4 1/2 stars
I received this eARC from Grand Central Publishing via netgalley.com (less)
Silence and Mickey. If you have read the previous two books in Elizabeth Hoyts Maiden Lane series (Wicked Intentions and Notorious Pleasures) I need n...moreSilence and Mickey. If you have read the previous two books in Elizabeth Hoyts Maiden Lane series (Wicked Intentions and Notorious Pleasures) I need not say more as fans have been waiting for this story since our couples first life changing meeting in Wicked Intentions. Now there is always that lingering question...can a book with so much anticipation live up to the hope readers have been clamoring for? Oh, yes. Yes, yes, yes. Ms Hoyt knocked it out of the park with this one.
Mickey O'Connor, notorious river pirate, caused Silence Hollingbrook to question her love for her late husband after Mickey forced Silence to leave his palace in a state of disarray after she came to bargain back her late husbands goods from his ship that Mickey stole. After she returns home, untouched, her husband refuses to believe her and he later dies at sea leaving a huge sense of loss upon Silence. When a baby girl is left on her doorstep, she throws all her love into caring for little Mary Darling and when she awakens one day to find her gone she panics until she receives a note from Mickey stating that he has something she wants. All the little pieces click into place as to who Mary Darling truly is but this is her daughter now and she knows she will do everything in her power to get him back...even if it means going back to Mickey and sacrificing her fragile reputation again.
Mickey truthfully could care less about his little daughter...her mother was just a whore and of no importance but Mickey has many enemies and his number one enemy wants the little baby to hold over Mickey's head. And to get to Mary means the evil Vicar needs to go through Silence and that is just unthinkable to Mickey. No women has ever gotten under his skin like Silence has from there one meeting nine months ago and he knows he must protect her at all costs and the only way to get her to stay with him, is through Mary Darling.
The transformation of Mickey O'Connor, river pirate, into a man that cares more about life than just money and power is excellent. It didn't happen overnight, it was a gradual, very believable process. I loved Mickey. His demons from his past will break your heart and make you understand how and why he grew up into the man he did. I was a bit surprised at the little twist in the middle of the book..it threw me off for a bit but it was a perfect solution that played out in the end. And even with all the pirate jargon talk (I did have to read a bit of it out loud to make sure I was reading it right), I really fell for Mickey, pirate and all.
Silence. I really wasn't sure how she was going to be able to handle this strong, bossy, snarly man but she surprised me. Her 'mama bear' instincts kicked in and she stood her ground with Mickey and refused to bend to her rules. It lead to quite a few humorous situations with Mickey roaring at her and Silence just smiling and saying no, thank you. It sort of reminded me of Beauty and the Beast when Belle first arrives at the Beasts castle so of course that made me smile. But watching Silence fall in love with Mickey was delightful. She knows it just isn't right but she again surprised me when she followed her heart instead of doing what her family asked of her at one point but then standing her ground in the end.
Overall, definitely one of my favorite historicals I have read this year. It will grab you from the beginning and keep you flipping the pages all the way through the heart pounding ending. And the epilogue will have you clamoring for the next book, Thief of Shadows, right away again. Thank you Ms Hoyt for stepping up and delivering a absolutely wonderful story that will leave many smiling faces and sighing hearts in its wake and be enjoyed for years to come!(less)