Audio Review: The Husband Hunt (Madison Sisters, Book 3) by Lynsay Sands

husband huntHeroine: Lisa Madison wants to get married and she wants to be married to Robert Langley, her best friend’s older brother. However he’s clueless. He does not see her as a woman. She’s about to get his attention!

Hero: Robert Langley rescues Lisa from near ruination at a madam’s establishment. Somebody wants to compromise her beyond repair – and the madam says the fellow is a gentlemen. This villain is possibly one of the many suitors surrounding Lisa. He’s going to have to keep an eye on her. No telling what trouble she’ll land herself in if he doesn’t.

Review: Lisa is a TSTL heroine. She can be a real featherbrain and does stupid things in the name of stubbornness and naiveté. She needs a lot of people to explain to her how things work and why she shouldn’t do certain things. Was she asleep in the schoolroom the entire time? Seriously. However, as someone who generally doesn’t like to read the unrequited-I’m-in-love-with-my-friend’s-brother (or brother’s friend) it read well to me. Robert is slowly dragged out of his shell and into the full light of his feelings. I liked that aspect a lot.

Narrator: Jaime Birch was a great narrator. I enjoyed listening very much and would listen to another by her.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

Buy: The Husband Hunt

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Review: Worth Any Price by Lisa Kleypas

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This story by Kleypas is an exciting adventure from start to finish. It all starts with a manhunt… or should I say a woman-hunt? Nick Gentry is looking for the wily Charlotte Howard. He has a small portrait of her in his pocket and his brother-in-law’s backing to get him into the Earl of Westcliff’s home where he’s tracked Charlotte. The Earl notices something fishy about the Viscount John Sydney and sets about unveiling the man’s secrets.

Meanwhile, John Sydney aka Nick Gentry, is prowling the premises for Charlotte and comes upon a young lady on top of a stone wall starring out across the grounds. Her foot is caught in her dress and Nick springs into action to save her… only to find the appealing woman in his arms is the very woman he’s been paid to track down.

Against all better judgment, Nick decides he can afford to stay and watch the lovely and lively Lottie. He comes to the startling conclusion that he wants her for himself and Lord Radnor can go hang before he’d ever bring to the obsessed creep a treasure such as her. Just as passion is sparking between Nick and Lottie, Westcliff pounces with the truth of Nick’s identity.

Frightened but determined, Lottie vows she will never go back to Lord Radnor. Westcliff offers to marry her to keep her away from Nick and provide protection, but Lottie turns him down. Instead she offers herself up to be Nick’s mistress which he refuses because he’d also rather have her as his wife…

I’m classifying this novel under virgin hero, not because Nick was a virgin in his relations to Lottie but because we see him lose his virginity to the Prostitute Gemma, well I suppose she was the Madam of the brothel.

This book would be rated higher, but I was a little disturbed by Radnor’s obsession with trying to break Charlotte as if she were a horse. I also didn’t like learning that her parents were okay with her being locked in a room alone with Radnor while he forced her to sit on his lap and answer to him while he touched her inappropriately… and while there was no full blown rape in the story, this qualifies to me as rape and is marked as such.

Luckily for readers Nick is a dominating force and dispels upsetting Radnor’s presence pretty easily. Oh and this is the first time I’ve seen a shower scene in a historical but Kleypas explains in her author notes why she included it based on her research. It’s solid so don’t let the idea of inaccuracy turn you away from reading this book.

Interesting term found within the prologue: buttock-and-file whore which is an old term for a street prostitute who was in connection with a pickpocket or also pickpocketed her customers. So you would pay, pay again involuntary, and perhaps gain a new venereal disease. Cool.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy: Worth Any Price (Bow Street, Book 3)

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Review: The Raven Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt

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I have wanted to read this book for a while. I can’t tell you how happy I am that I finally did read this book! As I closed the book, I was gushing. There were so many aspects of this story that I liked, it’s hard to find any to point out as negatives, but there are two side plot arcs that could have been left well enough alone and the story would have been tighter focused and undiminished.

As both arcs together make the bigger blackmail arc in the story, I’ll just detail them really quickly. One was the woman who slept with Anna’s late husband, and wanted that information hidden. The other was the lover of the woman who wanted his pockets lined. Of the two, the male lover blackmail arc was completely superfluous and unnecessary.

What I liked:

  • Anna working as Edward’s secretary.
  • Edward’s internal monologues.
  • Anna masquerading herself and claiming Edward at a “luxury” brothel.
  • Edward’s proposals.
  • The sex. Hot stuff, I tell you.

Anna is a respectable widow. Her late husband a complete scoundrel and adulterer. She can’t have kids, or so she thinks (as is the way with most romance novels – the heroes just have mightier seed – it’s a fact!).

Edward’s late wife died in childbirth. He found out after he married her just how much he disgusted her. He won’t make that mistake twice. He’s currently wooing a baron of an old family line for his daughter, and reassuring himself more than once that the daughter wants to be wed to him. This side arc makes sense for the time period, but it was just another unneeded obstacle in the story.

Meanwhile, Anna has gone to work for him. From the moment he meets her officially, he can’t take his mind off of Anna. She’s invaded his senses so much, he runs to London to seek release in a high end brothel so he won’t ruin her respectability. Little does he know… evil grin.

In parting I want to add just how much I loved the wren and raven symbolism and it’s correlation to the fairytale posted at the beginning of every chapter.

Review: 4 Stars

Buy: The Raven Prince