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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Midsummer Night's Sin by Kasey Michaels

Midsummer Night's Sin by Kasey Michaels
Publisher: Harlequin
Genre: Historical
Length: Full Length (379 pages)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 books
Reviewed by Camellia

Meet the Blackthorn Brothers—three unrepentant scoundrels infamous for being mad, bad and perilous to love.

Handsome as the devil and twice as tempting, Robin "Puck" Blackthorn lives for the pleasures of the moment. His only rule—never dally with an innocent woman. But when an encounter at a masquerade ball leaves him coveting the one woman who refuses to succumb to his charms, Puck realizes that some rules were made to be broken….

Scandalized to discover that the masked man with whom she'd shared a dance—and a forbidden embrace—is in fact the ton's most celebrated rake, Regina Hackett vows to keep her distance. Yet when her cousin vanishes, it is to Puck that Regina must turn. And as they embark on a dangerous journey through London's darkest alleys, Regina will discover that beneath Puck's roguish facade lies a man who will stop at nothing to protect her—or to convince her to take a chance on an unrepentant sinner.

Regina Hackett and Robin Goodfellow Blackthorn (Puck) meet at a taboo mask ball and become embroiled in a search for missing girls, one of whom is Regina’s cousin Miranda, whose blood is all noble—not diluted like Regina’s that is polluted with blood of her rich but crude tradesman father.

Regina knows she is a commodity to her father who plans for her to marry a nobleman and have sons so Reginald Hackett can say his grandsons are lords of the realm. Of course, Regina’s lady mother, who drinks excessively, despairs of her daughter’s shortcomings and blames them all on Mother Hackett and the Hackett genes. When Regina makes a miscue, she says it is Mother Hackett’s fault (rather like “the devil made me do it”). However, she is reared with luxuries, fine clothes, and sent out into Society with the adventurous Miranda for the Season. Miranda’s risqué plan gets her into a heap of trouble and Regina into a relationship that is not at all what her father had planned—but, oh, what, an experience for Regina!.

Puck is one of the bastard sons of Marquess Blackthorn. His personality fits his nickname for he is mischievous, lovable, happy, charming and makes people feel good about themselves. He keeps his intelligence under wraps most of the time and is not allergic to using his influence and money to get what he wants. He loves a challenge and Regina does become a challenge. He sees her not-yet-awakened passion, her determination, and her intelligence and cannot refuse her entreaties to make love with her. She is precious to him.

Conflicts, clandestine plans, mystery, and suspense pile up and get entangled as Regina and Puck delve into the sordid business of human trafficking. Some of the forays have a touch of human but pulse-pounding close calls and vicious traffickers that have no respect for human lives make A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S SIN compelling.

Kasey Michaels captivates with delightful dialogue and amazing humor that ranges from sublime to ridiculous as she reveals Puck’s joy for life and the awakening of Regina to womanhood. She makes the characters vibrantly alive and unique. Even the secondary characters have distinctive personalities. Regina’s mother becomes a different person when she is free of her oppressive husband and even stops drinking. Puck’s brother, Black Jack and his men grab the reader’s attention as they become involved. They add new, intense twists and turns to the plot as the reader gets pulled into the rough London dock district and into old roman caves. Of course, Regina’s father brings an even more disturbing element to the happenings.

A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S SIN deals with the horrific issue of human trafficking but it also lets the reader in on a sparkling, sizzling love story that overrides all else. Good Reading!