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Theft of Shadows (Signet Eclipse) Mass Market Paperback – 5 Feb 2008

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4 reviews
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Historical Romance With a Paranormal Twist 24 Feb. 2008
By Tamela Mccann - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Naomi Bellis's Theft of Shadows is chock full--lady robbers, dashing noblemen, secret societies, the ton, demons--you name it, it's probably there. Which is not to say it's a hodgepodge by any stretch; Ms. Bellis has a definite plan and a fairly good plot in this historical paranormal romance.

Gabriel d'Aubrigny is returning to England to earn his fortune after the years of the Terror in France and his family's exile in Austria. Unfortunately, things go wrong from the moment his ship pulls into port. He's attacked almost immediately and brought back into the employ of The Master, a mysterious man who wants Gabriel to keep an eye on the equally mysterious Sebastian Balthazar, confidante of the prince. At first Gabriel declines the offer, but when he is robbed by a female thief of his remaining funds, he finds himself reluctantly back in his old spying trade. Only this time, Gabriel discovers that his family's ancient Gift of magic has been roused, and he will have to learn to tame it if he's going to bring the evil Balthazar to justice. Not to mention, of course, the need to claim the beautiful Anne Tremaine, who just happens to be the thief who took his family's money and also has an agenda to bring down Balthazar.

Ms. Bellis has a pretty good sense of style in her writing, and she does keep her plot moving along well. While her characters are indeed likeable, the story is rife with cliches: the handsome, almost penniless member of the aristocracy; the mysterious "Master" who calls the shots; the valiant best friend; the fiesty young woman who has fallen on hard times and is deceiving all, but only with the best intentions. Still, the paranormal twist to this novel set in the early 1800s is a good plot device that keeps this novel from being a run-of-the-mill romance. I believe that Ms. Bellis has a talent that will keep her fans eagerly awaiting more.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Return of a favourite prodigal in excellent new book by Bellis 11 Feb. 2008
By Catherine Cardiff - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I was thrilled to see Gabriel - a personal favourite of mine from Bellis' cracking good first novel, Step Into Darkness - get his own story in her third book, Theft of Shadows.

With wit, sarcasm, and elan, Gabriel leaps sword-first into danger the moment he steps back onto English soil. Determined to go straight, he is instead catapulted by an unhappy encounter with a masked thief into the clutches of Sir Alaric, the King's spymaster, and dragged back to the double life he escaped six years before. Only this time, an old, dark magic threatens to master him as well.

Hiding under the guise of a quiet society widow, Anne Tremaine rides out to rob travellers, risking discovery and death to finance her desperate quest. When her plan brings her into conflict with the handsome chevalier, they are drawn to each other despite their secrets and deadly goals.

Sexual tension runs high from the moment of their first meeting. Once again, Bellis proves that she excels at crafting erotic love scenes that are highly physical yet sensitively drawn.

Theft of Shadows is lively fare, combining deception and danger with a sexy battle of wits. Bellis uses her obviously deep knowledge of the time to paint a believable background for her characters, and cloaks her dark mysteries in the strictly controlled movements of late eighteenth century Society. She is equally adept at describing the flash of jewelled society and the dank horror of a haunted crypt. With a nod to her gothic roots, Bellis' deft descriptions evoke just the right atmosphere without overloading the reader's senses or descending into parody.

This third installment brings in characters from both of her previous books. Bellis' use of recurring characters and historically accurate settings creates the impression of an integrated, complex society that supports her stories well. Even when dealing with magic and demonic forces, her characters have understandable, realistic motivations and actions. Both major and minor characters, the heroic and the mundane, have very human desires that move them off the page and into our imaginations.

Naomi Bellis was recently profiled in Canadian Living magazine, who called her "a woman to watch." I couldn't agree with them more.
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Bellis writes a winner again! 11 Feb. 2008
By Diana Friesen - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The passionate and independent Frenchman, Gabriel d'Aubrigny, returns to England in hopes of leaving his past as a spy behind him. Things turn bad immediately when he is robbed by a beautiful, spirited highwayman who takes his family's gold and even his horse. Gabriel is forced to return to his former employer, a mysterious spymaster, for temporary work while he searches for the thief. He is given a dangerous quest to find the man suspected of using dark magic against the Crown.

Anne Tremaine has a mission of her own and a wealth of secrets. After robbing a handsome traveler, Anne poses as a wealthy widow to hunt for an old enemy. While travelling in London Society, Anne meets Gabriel again and soon neither can ignore the passion that flares between them. Both Gabriel and Anne struggle to complete their quests, hoping that their dark secrets won't tear them apart, or get them killed in the process.

Gabriel has been my favorite character since Step into Darkness, and in this book Naomi Bellis does not disappoint by bringing this complex and wonderful character alive once again. The plot of this book pulls you along with its rich weaving of intrigue, action, and magic with a passionate love story. I think this may be Bellis' best novel yet!
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Great book 21 Mar. 2013
By K Stevens - Published on
Verified Purchase
I really liked this book, it was really good. It catches your interest fast and it's hard to put down.
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