Author: JILLIAN STONE
Source: My Personal Stash
Genre: Historical Romance
Length: Novel, Mass Market Paperback
Reviewed by: Artemis
London, 1887. Part stoic gentleman, part fearless Scotland Yard man, Zeno "Zak" Kennedy is an enigma of the first order. For years, the memory of a deadly bombing at King's Cross has haunted the brilliant Scotland Yard detective. His investigation has zeroed in on a ring of aristocratic rebels whose bloody campaign for Irish revolution is terrorizing the city. When he discovers one of the treacherous lords is acquainted with his free-spirited new tenant, Cassandra St. Cloud, his inquiry pulled him unexpectedly close to the hear of the conspiracy -- and into the arms of a most intriguing lady.
Cassie is no Victorian prude. An impressionist painter with very modern ideas about life and love, she is eager for a romantic escapade that is daring and discreet. She sets her sights on her dour but handsome landlord, but after she learns their meeting was not purely accidental, she hardly has a chance to forgive her lover before their passionate affair catapults them both into a perilous adventure.
I love this story - plain and simple. Mischief, mayhem, explosions, sex!
I adore the cover. Who is this guy - he is gorgeous! And where can I get one?
deep breath That being said. I wasn't sure I was going to like this book: New author, a storyline I wasn't sure about, a hero that was more beta than alpha, and I don't really care for artsy/fartsy characters. Boy was I wrong - I was caught hook, line and sinker in no time.
I especially enjoy when an author uses common language from the era. It creates a more interesting and believable story, and it makes me learn new words. One of my favorite passages:
Zeno forced a grin. "Wha' me? Nah, just coppin' a taste. I'd get the nobbler if the abbess ever caught my wanker in this gorgeous tosser."
The book isn't written entirely this way, but I thought it gave a good example of the street language. Something else I also enjoyed is the manner in which Ms. Stone wrote her sex scenes. Not "in-your-face" explicit, but very sexual and heated.
I adored Zeno and Cassie. Cassie is a young widow. She wasn't married very long, actually still a newlywed when widowed, and she strikes out on her own. The chemistry between these two ignites the pages within the delightful tale of an Irish revolution. The secondary characters of Yard Men, Rafe and Finn, Cassie's parents and Zeno's housekeeper (just to name a few) add additional color to the story. Being set near the end of the 19th century, inventions make their proper appearance - What great beginnings for the Special Unit. My Bond Girl is purring.
The second book in the series, A Dangerous Liaison with Detective Lewis is already waiting for me on the coffee table.