Friday, March 7, 2014

Book Review: Passionately Yours

The youngest of the Hellions of High Street, Caro Sloane has watched her two sisters have exhilarating encounters with dashing heroes, and now she is longing for some excitement of her own. After all, how can she write truly passionate poetry until she has experienced a Grand Adventure? But that seems unlikely to happen as she'll be spending the next few weeks in the quiet spa town of Bath, where nothing grand or adventurous ever happens . . . until she and her new friend Isobel are nearly abducted while walking on a quiet country road-only to be rescued by Alec McClellan, the moody and mysterious Scottish lord she met at Dunbar Castle.

Alec has come to England to deal with a treacherous betrayal and fears that his half-sister Isobel is in peril from an old enemy. Does he dare share his secrets with Caro? The bold and brave beauty leaves him no choice, and together they are quickly caught up in a swirl of dangerous intrigue . . . where fiery desire between them may ignite into the greatest danger of all.

Hmmm this outing with Caro and Alec (who's romance began in Anna's book SINFULLY YOURS) was enjoyable, a bit far fetched and exciting. And with far less "ye gods" tossed around.


I ask for very few things in my historical romances honestly.  I want to be entertained, I want clever banter between the characters, I want chemistry and I want the author to either go full out with the accuracy or just toss it to the wind in favor of fun.  Cara Elliott delivers all of this and more in this last "Hellions of High Street" book.  Centered around Caro, the youngest of the Sloane sisters and an accomplished poet, as she struggles to find that SOMETHING that will make her poetry really come alive.

Alec, a Scottish Baron last seen skulking around in SINFULLY YOURS--trading barbs, quips and grumbles with Caro no less--returns to be just as grouchy growly and in general vexing.  Some of Alec's attitude did put me off--he has sudden turns of mood that seemed to come and go like shadows on a pond, but for the most part I thought he was a good foil to Caro.

Andover, who was courting Anna in the last two books and is now just a confidant and blissfully unaware sidekick to Caro's schemes, is also a good foil to Caro.  I'm glad Elliott made it clear early on that these two just enjoy each other's company because neither expects anything.  Isobel, Alec's younger (half)sister, was also a biddable secondary character.  She certainly rang the peal over Alec's head enough to make him rethink treating her like an invalid!

The ongoing plot of Alec's radical ideas (from SINFULLY) re-emerges to a shocking turn.  Trust the Scottish to turn Bath into a den of murderers, kidnappers, thieves and wild men.  Alec's past heartache also makes things difficult, but honestly I could care less about that part since he angsted over it too much and for no real reasoning to my mind.

Unlike the previous books Caro's sisters are not present throughout most of it.  There's the occasional letter from Anna, but not until the very end do they make an appearance and I think Caro was better for it.  Much like Alec with Isobel, Olivia and Anna didn't quite see Caro as grown up or mature, but she showed a definite practical streak against the villain!

In all this was a wonderful ending chapter to the Hellions books.  It was refreshing to read about three sisters who not only had a close bond, but who also refused to bend to the will of society.  Oh they had pretty enough manners, but they weren't called Hellions for no good reason!