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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Pursuing Love by Karen Hall

Pursuing Love by Karen Hall
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Historical
Length: Full (282 pages)
Heat: Spicy
Rating: 4 Books
Reviewed by Camellia

A reformed thief, Sharyn Winslow is determined to save her school for women But when doing so means she must work with the policeman who helped send her to prison, will she keep up her guard against him or surrender to the passion he ignites? A determined detective, Nick Tyler needs to solve one more case to insure his promotion to inspector and vindicate the murder of his parents. Working with the troublesome Sharyn Winslow is the last thing he wants. Will he follow the path to success or let her penetrate his long guarded heart?

Having survived life in an orphanage, life on the mean streets, and prison in late 1700’s London, Sharyn Winslow does not intend to let financial problems or the detective that helped put her in prison destroy her Lilac Street School. The old fear and distrust of “peelers” make her heart rate speed up, but she knows it is not the only reason when she is once again involved with Detective Nick Tyler. He has no business being so disgustingly handsome while still being so intimidating.

Detective Tyler, one of the most effective in controlling crime, prowls the mean streets of London. After the murder of his parents, he left college to be a policeman. A smoldering anger fuels his determination to succeed in his fight against crime on the streets and against corruption in the police department. When the judge says he must work with Sharyn, he put on his best “peeler” armor, but his heart cannot be shielded. As he sees all her efforts to help women who have been in prison and orphan children, he has a hard time believing “once a criminal, always a criminal” that his immediate supervisor Dobbins preaches.

Pursuing Love teems with interesting characters that stir the emotions as they influence Sharyn and Nick’s relationship. Little Jack and Lacy Allen (Lightfingers) reach out and tug at the heart. Lacy’s secrets, survival instincts, and street sense create a sub-plot that becomes extremely important to the main plot.

Karen Hall infuses Pursuing Love with social ills of late eighteenth century London—poverty, theft, abuse of power and authority, and women’s struggle to be recognized as intelligent, capable individual—not just chattel or someone to be taken advantage of. Even better, she gives the reader a stunning surprise at the climax of the story—which makes for good reading!