Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel!
Welcome also to Series Sunday!
We have recently finished the Julia Quinn Bridgerton series as well as the newer connected books that Ms. Quinn has written. We are now working our way through The Bachelor Chronicles – a series that has been written by Elizabeth Boyle. As I mentioned last week, I ran into Ms. Boyle at a book signing last fall, and she started me reading her books again after a bit of a break. Once we finish with this series, I’ll be giving away a selection of books by Ms. Boyle!
Confessions of a Little Black Gown by Elizabeth Boyle
Publisher: Avon Historical Romance
Release: Mar 31, 2009
Source: I purchased this book to read and review
She spied him in the shadows….
And in an instant, Thalia Langley knew the man before her was no saint. He might claim to be the Duke of Hollindrake’s unassuming country cousin, but no man that handsome, that arresting, could be anything but…well, he simply must be an unrepentant rogue. His cat-like grace and power leave Tally shivering in her slippers at the notion of all the wicked, forbidden things he might be capable of doing….to her
Indeed, Lord Larken is no bumbling vicar, but a master spy there in his majesty’s service to find – and murder – a notorious pirate freed in a daring prison escape. Devoted to the Crown, Larken’s not about to let an interfering (and not entirely innocent) Mayfair miss disrupt his ruthless plans. Yet how can he be anything but tempted by this lady in a little black gown…a dress tantalizing enough to lead even Larken astray.
Confessions of a Little Black Gown is another book in the Bachelor Chronicles series that Elizabeth Boyle has been writing over the last few years. This is the second book that I have read recently by Elizabeth Boyle and I’m really enjoying this series of books!
Lord Larken is coerced into going undercover as The Duke of Hollindrake’s country cousin. He is a former agent of the crown who was taken out of the field as he was becoming more and more unstable – according to his superiors. Now these superiors need him for another job, and are not giving her any choice. As a child, he was a witness to his father’s murder and is determined to discover who his murderer was. Larkin has had a hard life and it’s not about to get any easier as he is tasked with not only capturing a notorious pirate but murdering him. This pirate was once one of his best friends.
He thinks he assumes the demeanor of a bumbling country vicar, but Thalia Langley sees through him from the start. Thalia is the sister of the Duke of Hollindrake’s new wife. Thalia’s sister, Felicity is a force of nature, the creator of the Bachelor Chronicles and determined to make a name for herself as a successful matchmaker. Felicity sees the job arranging for Milo Ryder aka Lord Larkin’s marriage as a feather in her cap. She sets Thalia to seeing to grooming Mr Ryder/Lord Larken for presentation to potential brides. Thalia keeps seeing two separate people – the bumbling vicar, and the dangerous, attractive man that she is drawn to. No one else see anything other than a kindly vicar, much to Thalia’s dismay. Meanwhile, Thalia and her cousin, Pippin are hiding Captain Dashwell, a pirate, in the house, disguised as their companion. They broke Captain Dashwell out of jail and are hiding him until he can be taken to the coast to escape back to America and also so that Pippin can spend more time with the man that she loves.
This sets up the story and I don’t want to give away much more! This story has alot of characters that should be difficult to keep straight. Ms. Boyle’s style of writing and creating characters allows these characters to be distinct individuals. They are connected to previous books and I imagine are setting up information for future books, but this book is easily read as a stand-alone without any information from other books.
The characters that Ms. Boyle creates are delightful. The are truly good, or very bad. Villains are deserving of our scorn, and conversely, the “good guys” are deserving of our cheers. Thalia is a highly principled individual, but determines who deserves her regard. Captain Dashwell is seen as a criminal set for hanging by the crown, but she sees him as misunderstood and sets out to save him from a hanging and protect him until he can escape to his ship. Lord Larken has had a tough life and is in need of the proverbial “good woman” by his side. Thalia is unconventional, yet she seems to “fit” Larken. He isn’t looking at her as someone who needs changing, although he does try to protect her on several occasions!
I have several more of this series on their way to me and I look forward to reading more of what Ms Boyle has written in this series. Although I seem to be reading this series out of order, I’m looking forward to finishing it!