What I like about Kat Martin is that she can write a good, seemingly straight genre book, and take it that little bit further into something more. Here in the sequel to ‘The Fire Inside’, a Regency romance is thoroughly intertwined with murder, mystery and the very likely incarceration of the central female character.
Jillian Whitney, well born but now broke, had found an unlikely heroic figure in her kindly guardian. Unfortunately, most of the ton interpreted their relationship as being that of a physical nature, and Jillian’s reputation was in tatters. Adam Hawthorne, the wealthy Earl of Blackwood, also thinks this of the relationship, and is in the process of trying to have her switch protectors when her guardian is killed.
Surprising them both with an altruistic streak, Adam takes Jillian in and offers her his protection while the murder is investigated. During this time the two get to know each other and grow closer. The situation is muddied by Jillian’s now ruined reputation, the proving of her innocence, and the effect any relationship between them might have on his family.
The secondary characters are as interesting as the main two, with Adam’s sister Maggie’s own romance and the relationship between brother and sister being an engaging secondary line to the main story.
Although this book is a sequel, it stands alone as a fully fleshed out story in it’s own right. If you enjoy a good murder mystery story, I’m sure you’ll enjoy this tale as much as readers of Regency romance will.