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Posted May 2, 2013
The characters were well written; however, the book was little hardnto follow. I was confused when I first started reading the book, I feel like I should have read the first book prior to trying to read this book (I would have probably understood what was going on at the beginning instead of having a hard time getting interested in the book-keep in mind I didn't realize this was a series until I had started reading the book). Overall, the book was well written-it could have had a prologue to fill you in, if you hadn't read the first book.
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Posted July 29, 2013
Posted March 12, 2013
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This sweet romance centers on the story of Felicity, a headstrong young woman who defies the conventions of Regency England to run off with a (male) friend to live an adventurous life in Italy. The story drops you right in the middle of the action, with Felicity overhearing a murder plot. Fearing what will happen next, Felicity disguises herself as a boy and plans to return to England with her friend in order to escape a man she no longer trusts. But the ship captain, the clever Hugh Mountbank, is an acquaintance, and he sees through her subterfuge immediately.
What follows is a series of dramatic escapades as Felicity and Hugh find themselves allied (sort of) to help keep Felicity’s family safe. As they are continually thrown together, both characters explore their attraction to the other. The only question is whether they will drop their guard enough to defeat a mutual enemy.
There’s a lot to like in this novel. Felicity is a wonderful character: lively and unconventional, but adamant about defending her loved ones from her own follies. While some of her actions seem a little too extreme to be believed for the time...such as when she runs off to the continent with her rakish friend, unchaperoned for much of the time. While the reader is told that Felicity’s and Adam’s friendship is never more than that, by the standards of the time, she’d be completely ruined anyway, even though her family works to cover up the most embarrassing details of her actions.
That said, such behavior fits Felicity’s personality very well. She is portrayed as rather heedless of the consequences of her actions, and it takes the repeated advice of several family members (as well as the intervention of Hugh) to get her to be a little circumspect. And her spunk is refreshing — she helps dispose of a body and gets into a physical confrontation with a baddie because she isn’t a shrinking violet, which I really appreciated. The hero, Hugh, is a bit overbearing at first, partly because we see him through Felicity’s distrusting eyes. But he grows more likable and multifaceted as the story progresses. By the end, their attraction feels very realistic.
There were a few issues with the novel. First, it really plunges the reader into the middle of a few situations, where some explanation would have helped a lot. The author references characters and events that happened in the past (I believe in other books in the series), so if you haven’t read them, you just have to keep the names straight until you catch up. Also, there are a ton of secondary characters (mostly siblings, aunts, and uncles)...and it seems like nearly all of them were or are still deathly ill with some unnamed ailments. Cecilia? Sick. Adam? Sick. Jane? Sick. Felicity’s mama? Sick. Eleanor? Maybe sick...I can’t remember. But you get the point. That’s a whole lot of sick for any story *not* set during a plague.
These issues are a bit vexing, but if you can handle the constant illnesses, and if you can tread water until all the backstory gets filled in, the novel is a fast-paced, sweet and enjoyable read with some intrigue, and the unusually vibrant main characters set it apart.
Posted March 12, 2013
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