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Thursday, October 6, 2011

Priceless Deception by Jennifer Anne Coffen

Priceless Deception by Jennifer Anne Coffen
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Historical
Length: Full Length (352 pages)
Heat Level: Spicy
Book Rating: 3.5 books
Reviewed by Camellia

“The French Blue diamond must be destroyed.” Haunted by the words of her dying father, Lady Madeline Sinclair arrives for the London Season with more than parties and the latest fashion on her mind. She has sworn a vow, and the beautifully headstrong and fearless Madeline will allow nothing to distract her…until she meets the infamous Lord Colin, Duke of Douglas, a man known for his scandalous past engagement. With a dark grin and stormy eyes, he threatens to make her forget her duty, along with her manners.

Bound together by the mysterious diamond, Madeline and Colin soon succumb to the passion raging between them, even as the diamond eludes their grasp. But the true threat lies in the hands of an enemy whose dangerous obsession with the past has the power to destroy them both.

Priceless Deception is a Regency adventure with all the usual trappings along with fun, humor, and some really scary, life-threatening happenings plus a love that must navigate the troubled waters of dealing with an unfaithful fiancĂ© that returns, of an unwarranted inherited bad reputation, and greed that’s run amok before finding safe harbor.

Lady Madeline Sinclair returns to London to do what she promised her father she’d do as he lay dying. What a stir she causes among the Ton. Unaware of her parents’ scandal when she was a baby, Madeline is not particularly interested in the gathering whispers about her and what must surely be her inherited proclivities. Mothers of marriageable age daughters are uneasy. Madeline is a natural beauty and a new face to London Society for the Season. Moreover, her Aunt Cecilia (in financial straits) is desperate to find both Madeline and her own daughter Helena husbands. In true Regency form Aunt Cecilia sets about her task with determination but the two girls give little to no help. They have different agendas from Cecilia.

Helena doesn’t want the wealthy Lord Vickem who wants her and Madeline is totally focused on finding the cursed French Blue Diamond and destroying it just like she promised—even if it means breaking and entering a London house where she and her parents had once lived. Many of the ensuing events are predictable, but Ms. Coffen adds a special touch of humor and fun to what is going on making delightful reading.

Lord Colin the sixth duke of Douglas, who now resides in this London house, is intrigued with the intrepid young woman who maneuvers her way into his home and dares the wrath of London society to carry out her mission. For the first time since the “Juliana hoopla” Colin comes alive with interest in what is going on around him. The cinnamon-haired green-eyed enchantress with an air of innocence about her makes Colin’s blood heat—life is worth living again.

Jennifer Ann Coffen creates some antagonists that make one shudder. The lascivious, greedy Lord Rockford, the smelly miscreant Daniel Moore. And the conniving Juliana send chills up the spine. On the other hand, some of her other characters bring humor that tickles the funny bone. Her weaving together of fear, fooling-around, fun, and frivolity then enhancing it with a charming love story makes Priceless Deception sparkling, fast-paced reading that keeps one turning pages.