This was one of those books where I had to slug my way through it. I don’t know why I had to slug but I did. I started and stopped this three times and finally finished it. Woohoo. I feel very accomplished.
One of the parts about this book that bothers me is that it’s first cousin romance. I’m not sure why this had to be the case. They grew up for the most part away from each other – so could they not have been childhood friends or perfect strangers? I suppose it is historically accurate as first cousin marriages took place among royalty of the time so why not the gentry, but it was more than a bit off putting.
Elinor is a dowdy bluestocking spinster. She acts as her mother’s secretary and artist as a way to escape the endless parade of pointless ballroom attendance. On a trip in France to study religious houses Elinor runs into Theo Ravenhurst. At first she doesn’t recognize him as her cousin, but pretty quickly that is sorted out.
As the two fight attraction, Theo is on a mission to recover an artifact that he purchased from a late Duke in the area. Theo manages to get himself, Elinor, and her mother invited to the new Duke’s chateau and conducts midnight searches. A near brush with death and subsequent flight throw the two into a night of wild passion but of course everything between them is so screwed up they only hear the words the other is saying not the meaning.
Rating: 2.5 Stars