One of my very favourite HR storylines is that of the long-gone fiance. You know, the one who is betrothed to the heroine while she is little more than a child, and comes back years later to discover how much she's grown up in his absence.
I REALLY liked this book. I was predisposed to like the story, but the writing was what clinched it for me. The detail, the clothing, the descriptions, the dialogue. Oh, the dialogue! It is simply WONDERFUL. The expressions used by the characters, their turns of phrase and slightly flowery language evoke the time period beautifully. The Georgian period is my favourite and it has been sadly, sadly neglected with the current glut of Regency romances. You can tell how much knowledge of/research into the period was done here; the author has done an excellent job.
The Hero redeems himself quite nicely (and I must admit that I didn't really like him at the start), and the heroine is likeable and very clever. They have nice chemistry together and the steamy bits are, well, pretty steamy. Ms. Vane has a way with those scenes that was a bit different and quite refreshing, imo.
There were a couple of parts I found a bit clunky right at the beginning, where it looked
like the author was setting up her story within the confines of the novella format. Does that make sense? It seemed that a character did one of those speeches where they have to info dump to the reader while talking to someone else (who already knew the info because they were there). Happily, it was only at the beginning. I think if ABoP was a novel the author could have taken the time to show us the history, but because this was a novella she couldn't. The quality of Ms. Vane's writing and the story itself took over shortly after that and I was hooked.
I can't wait to read Ms. Vane's next book, A Wild Night's Bride, which comes out in April. I'm also hoping there's a full-length novel in her future. She's definitely an author to watch.Thanks to Victoria Vane for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.