Thursday, 22 September 2011

Tantalizing Secrets by Lynne Connolly

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?

Peter is one of three male friends who have grown up together and as adults became known for their bedding of many beautiful women. With Nick and Severus happily married, Peter is the last one to walk down the aisle. He’s a politician, and happily so, because it means he can live his own life, free of having anything to do with any titles when the time comes. Until the death of his older brother, who led a double life.

Peter wants to find out who killed his brother, because the verdict of accidental death didn’t sit well with him. Why would his brother, who was afraid of heights, fall from the top of a tower? Why would he even go up that spiral staircase in the first place? Something was wrong, and I joined Peter and Arabella in discovering what had really happened and why.

Arabella had been married to an older man. Now a widow, she throws herself into making sure her sister has support during her grieving process, and at the same time fighting off the attentions of a creepy man who made my skin crawl. With Peter pretending to be Arabella’s brother for the purposes of investigating his own brother’s death, and Arabella’s real brother, back from his travels, acting as Peter’s secretary, the plot thickens and more characters come into play.

With the shocking and truly rude appearance of a certain woman in Peter’s past, I was left open-mouthed at her audacity and felt for Arabella and her sister here. Peter was put in an awkward position as well, and I feared for the longevity of Peter and Arabella’s new relationship.

We are about to become three.

“I suspect it’s very hot over there.”
Peter suspected it too.

…her hooped petticoat belled up and swirled behind her…

Peter frowned and toyed with his tea dish in its saucer, the only sound in the room the scraping of china against china.

He glanced away, and Arabella knew he was feeling more than he was allowing himself to reveal to them.

…like some gate of hell.

…a blaze of greedy orange flame.

With deception, greed, jealousy and double-crossing on the long list of good points for reading Tantalizing Secrets, you might want to also add love, beauty, great imagery, fantastic plot, gripping scenes…oh, the list is endless. I’ve never been disappointed by a Lynne Connolly Regency and I don’t think I ever will. She’s superb in this genre. An absolutely stunning historical author, in my opinion. Buy any one of her Regencies today. You won’t regret it if you’re a Regency fan.

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