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on August 18, 2014
Setting: 1821-22, India and various locations in England
Genre: Romantic adventure
Lord Hugo Duran, a thoroughgoing reprobate, though under sentence of death, agrees to try to find the golden leopard, an idol that had been stolen from a small principality in India by an Englishman. He has one year to do this before the sentence is carried out. He returns to England with Shivaji, the royal assassin, and sees Lady Jessica Carville, the daughter of an Earl, with whom he'd had a brief affair 6 years prior, before his return to India. She agrees, despite their history and her mistrust, to help him find the leopard. He plans to find a way to escape during the course of their search.
The characters are interesting. Duran is a lying, manipulative scoundrel, but his charm and hidden emotions make him likable. Jessie is hard, cold, and ambitious, but she's hiding vulnerabilities that make you feel for her. Shivaji is calm, and coolly accepting that fate has set him the task of killing Duran, but you have to like him as well. All 3 of these main characters grow over the course of the story.
This is a well written story. I chuckled, I teared up, and it almost triggered my claustrophobia. It kept me awake until I finished it - really, I tried to go to sleep, but my dreams of what might happen next kept waking me.
I definitely recommend this adventure.
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on March 1, 2017
A sexy mystery that made me sigh with longing. Twists and turns so that as so as you think you have it figured out the whole thing changes. And the sex as sex always is was so much better because it was filled with love.
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on November 28, 2012
Lynn Kerstan writes historical romance for those of us who love a really good story set in an authentic and identifiable historical period - in this case the Regency. Her characters are flawed, imperfect and really wonderful. Duran is a triumph of a bad boy hero, somehow likeable & sympathetic despite all we know of him. And Lady Jess is headstrong, difficult,struggling to be herself in a very unsympathetic world. Somehow they match. The adventure, with its roots in exotic India, which plays out in everyday England is compelling. I didn't know how the author was going to make it come out all right, so I had to keep reading!
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on April 10, 2013
I feel like I've read all the good 19th century historical authors out there, so to come upon a new one who's published a bunch of books is just marvelous! This was my first foray into Lynn Kerstan's novels, and I'm totally hooked. Loved the hero and heroine, loved their unpredictable and unexpectedly cute banter, loved the story and the fact that it just kept getting darker and darker through the whole thing. Yes, true conflict! So many historical romance heroes and heroines have no impediment to their HEA, and this one was serious and good. Highly recommend for fans of Connie Brockway, Sherry Thomas, Courtney Milan, Carolyn Jewel et al.
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on December 4, 2012
I loved this book! It had everything you need in a good read: romance, action, sex, and adventure. The characters are rich and well-developed. You will enjoy the fast pace of this book. It is definitely a page turner. The story will leave you begging for more from the author. Luckily she has Heart of the Tiger and the Silver Lion. I get a sneak peak at Jessica and Duran again. Definitely a good edition to my collection. I give it a 5 out of 5. Great read!
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on January 6, 2013
I really liked this book, except I'm not fond of extremely detailed sex scenes. No problem, just scan over, as long as the book itself has a wonderful story with very interesting characters that were well developed, with a few twists and turns. Otherwise, if the story had not been interesting, this would have been deleted due to the sex scenes. After all, as adults, we know what goes on behind closed doors, or in this case while in a carriage.
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on May 8, 2013
I thought this was a great book: the story was amazing with several plots going on at the same time, loved Jessie and Duran, the hero and heroine, enjoyed the many secondary characters. The suspense kept me going to the very end of the book, trying to guess if and how Duran would get out of his death sentence. Enjoyed the book immensely and I'm going to look for more books by this author.
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on November 3, 2002
This is just a great action adventure romance, with exotic settings, intense scenes, and an undercurrent of humor that helps relieve the tension. Duran is a hero to die for, and Jessica is a heroine women can identify with-- strong yet vulnerable. Their romance is torrid, and so are the adventures they get into together.
The plotline involves rare antiquities, and I found this glimpse into the world of the collector fascinating. But most of all, I loved the complex and tempestuous relationship between a desperate man and the only woman who can save him. There is torment and sacrifice and triumph in this book, and plenty of passion too!
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VINE VOICEon March 21, 2003
It could be because this book is part of a series, but I got the feeling as I read that there were things missing. Of course it could also have been because she lost track of her plot and did n ot tie up all the loose ends.
The books alternative between sweet romance and very sensual, and the heroine is not someone I ever get to really know and like.
That could be because the hero Hugo is the central character in the book from the opening pages, but I never really understand what she sees in him. He is an excellent character, if a bit uneven in places, and not the total Alpha male who ravishes everything in sight.
Still I cannot figure out why he would ever have left her so shamefully-even the reasons given do not ring true considering how much chemistry the two of them evidently have in bed.
Some of the subplot with rescuing the sister from a bad marriage is quite heavy handed and you can see the ending coming a mile off.
A lot of it reads like a pastiche of other books like Collins' Moonstone and several bad Hollywood films. I wouldn't mind seeing Hugo again in another novel (or in my local bar!!) but the rest left me cold.
An entertaining and fast read, but don't expect any depth or real suspense.
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on December 8, 2012
Lynn Kirstan is highly knowledgeable about the historical setting of
her book. She is also a wonderful author of this sort of mix of adventure,
romance, and keeps the story moving swiftly. I have read all three books
in this series and marveled at her story telling techniques.
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