Grant Morgan is one of London's most eligible and unattainable bachelors. He's also a powerful member of the Bow Street Runners, and when he's called to the waterfront late one night to investigate a drowning victim, Grant is stunned to recognize the face of Vivien Rose Duvall, a well-known woman of the night. He's even more startled when he realizes that she's alive. With no one to care for her, Grant carries Vivien to his home and revives her, only to learn that she is suffering from amnesia.
Vivien hesitantly accepts her handsome rescuer's claim that she is his mistress, despite her misgivings about her true identity. Nevertheless, she can't deny the marks on her throat that prove her near-drowning in the Thames was not an accident, and now she must trust the man who claims her as his paramour, for her life is in danger. As Grant searches for Vivien's attacker, the two find themselves falling in love, all the while struggling to stay one step ahead of the evil forces that will stop at nothing to see Vivien dead.
Kleypas's characters are not your run-of-the-mill Regency fare--Grant lacks a noble lineage while Vivien's "membership" in the demimonde is unusual to say the least--which makes them even more fascinating and thoroughly absorbing. Toss in a puzzling mystery to solve and an intriguing look inside the workings of the famous Bow Street Runners, and you've got a novel well worth reading. No wonder Lisa Kleypas's books are consistent bestsellers--you won't be able to put this one down.--Lois Faye Dyer
From Publishers Weekly
Untypically, this Regency features lower-class protagonists: a rough-around-the-edges Bow Street runner and a notorious, unlikable courtesan. Grant Morgan, once a poor orphan, has become rich in the service that was the precursor to London's modern-day police force. (Runners worked both for the Bow Street magistrates and as independent detectives.) When he rebuffs the advances of flame-haired beauty Vivien Duvall, she retaliates by spreading vicious, demeaning rumors. He then finds her half drowned, almost strangled to death and suffering from traumatic amnesiaAand he takes revenge by convincing her they're lovers. This way, he can bed her easily while searching for her assailant. But is she really who he thinks she is? The questions of exactly who it is that he has slept with and who hates Vivien Duvall enough to try to kill her are quite intriguing. Kleypas (Then Came You) writes a spirited tale, clearly enjoying her characters, but she may unsettle fans of the genre with her willingness to stray from its conventions. Not only does she present a d?class? world, but Regency misses don't normally say "Ick!"
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.