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Monday, May 11, 2009

Tantalizing Secrets by Lynne Connolly

Tantalizing Secrets by Lynne Connolly
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Historical
Length: Full (268 pages)
Heat: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 Books
Reviewed by Camellia

A murder… A lord’s desire…and her quiet, respectable life is gone forever.

Secrets Trilogy, Book 3

Arabella Mason is too busy investigating her brother-in-law’s “accidental” death to entertain thoughts of love. She’ll go to any lengths to ease her sister’s grief, even accept the help of the distressingly attractive Viscount Bredon, Peter Worsley. Instead of answers, the trail of clues only leads to more questions. Who was her brother-in-law, really…and why does Peter, who poses as her brother in public, make mincemeat of her resistance in private?

A successful politician and confirmed bachelor, Peter has bedded the loveliest women in society. He never imagined he’d wind up in a Leicester backwater, helping a pretty widow investigate his brother’s untimely death. As his suspicions of foul play grow stronger, the danger rises—and so does his desire for Arabella. One kiss, and she snatches away all his resolve, leaving him wondering which he wants more…

To find his brother’s killer? Or keep Arabella safe—and make her his?

Warning: Irresistible seduction makes this book a steamy read. Keep a man handy for emergencies.

Georgian love tangles plus an intriguing mystery entangle widow Arabella Mason’s and Peter Worsley’s lives with a multitude of other characters as they are caught up in trying to find out what really happened to Peter’s brother Gerald, Lord Bredon.

Arabella inadvertently sets the cat among the pigeons when she takes a letter written by whom she thinks is her dead brother-in-law to Ulverscroft Manor. A clergyman’s daughter and widow of a button manufacturer, Arabella lives a very proper life, but, with the delivery of the letter, she sends her life into a tailspin. She’s soon embroiled in affairs involving murder, greed, illicit liaisons, local gossips, and influential Lords and Ladies.

Peter Worsley, second son of Ulverscroft Manor, is rich and successful in his own right and has no desire to become Lord Bredon. In his effort to straighten out his older brother’s affairs and learn the truth about his death, Peter finds that Gerald was not only a wastrel and libertine but also a bigamist. Wealthy and politically influential, Peter has sown his share of wild oats in the Society of London and is well known in the Ton, but he is in strange territory with Arabella Mason.

The secondary characters, some to love and some to hate, play important roles in Arabella’s emotional awakening and in Peter’s metamorphosis from rake to a man truly in love. They are also involved in the untangling of a clandestine scheme at the button factory, a scheme that involves the truth of Gerald’s death. The abundance of secrets revealed makes captivating reading.

Lynne Connolly’s attention to details about Georgian mores and her delightful way of weaving a story together makes Tantalizing Secrets a fantastic novel. MOST ENJOYABLE!