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Through the Smoke Paperback – 15 Oct 2013

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Product details

  • Paperback: 316 pages
  • Publisher: Montlake Romance (15 Oct. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1477808760
  • ISBN-13: 978-1477808764
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.5 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 126,817 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Brenda Novak Bio

It was a shocking experience that jump-started Brenda Novak's career as a bestselling author--she caught her day-care provider drugging her children with cough syrup to get them to sleep all day. That was when Brenda decided she needed to quit her job as a loan officer and help make a living from home.

"When I first got the idea to become a novelist, it took me five years to teach myself the craft and finish my first book," Brenda says. But she sold that book, and the rest is history. Her novels have made the New York Times, USA Today and Borders/Waldenbooks bestseller lists and won many awards, including two Rita nominations, the Book Buyer's Best, the Book Seller's Best and the National Reader's Choice Award.

Brenda and her husband, Ted, live in Sacramento and are proud parents of five children--three girls and two boys. When she's not spending time with her family or writing, Brenda is usually working on her annual fund-raiser for diabetes research--an online auction held on her Web site ( every May. Brenda has raised over $1 million to date.

Product Description

About the Author

New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Brenda Novak has penned over 40 novels. A two-time RITA Award nominee, she's won The National Reader's Choice, The Bookseller's Best, The Bookbuyer's Best and many other awards. She runs an annual on-line auction for diabetes research every May at To date, she’s raised over $1 million. Brenda considers herself lucky to be a mother of five and married to the love of her life.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rashika on 3 Dec. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
It took me a long time to decide on a rating for this book. I wanted to give it a 5 and a 4 and a 3, which made choosing the closest `half' star a whole lot harder.

My friends who read this book absolutely loved it and while I had a great time reading it, it just didn't enchant me. I think that was one of the reasons I ended up giving it a 3.5, I expected so much from this book and while I got it, the book didn't captivate me.

The strongest points of this book for me were the characters and the romance. Novak did a wonderful job developing both.

Lord Druridge lost his wife in a fire. He wasn't particularly heartbroken about that because there was no lost love between them, she had lived to make his life hell even going as far as to go get pregnant with someone else's child and calling it his. Because of this the majority of people believe that he was the one who started the fire that killed his wife. Even though he doesn't remember what happened that night, he is pretty sure that that isn't true but if he doesn't prove it, he will be punished for a crime he didn't commit.

I loved how the author didn't try to pretty up his character. He owned a mining company and he didn't really go out of his way to be nice to them. In fact for the most part they barely registered on his radar, because yes he was above them in status so he didn't really have to care about them. That doesn't mean he is dense and perceives himself to be the center of the universe. He just realizes that he is from a completely different world from them. He was raised to value honor and duty and he remains true to that for most part of the book. He isn't a perfect character and he isn't meant to be. He is human, he feels pain, anger and betrayal just like everyone else but he is also strong.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Sharon L on 24 Oct. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Before I start this review I need you to understand something, while reading this book a few things happened to me:
I walked on the street with my nose stuck to me phone (where I read the book), I lost sleep, I got on the right bus but missed the right station to get down on and held to walk all the way back, I was late for class, I missed some classes and I hardly listened in the ones I was in.

In short, I was so immersed by the book I forgot about the people around me and the things I needed to do, my full attention was on the book (thus all those mistakes I made).

It has been a long time since I was this caught up in the book- up until now I was sure it was my great discipline and self-control, I was fooling myself to think so.

Brenda Novak says in the introduction how she wrote this book inspired by the gothic feeling of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. Only time will tell if she accomplished her goal. But your humble servant here thinks she did but she also managed to create something entirely her own!

This historical romance is written so very beautifully, and sometimes it had maintained a gothic feeling, but even when it didn't it was still chilling heart wrenching or heartwarming and completely terrifying, especially the last few chapters that had me so nervous and afraid!

I have to give you a fair warning- unlike Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights or any historical romance that was written at that time, this book, influenced by these day and age, had sex in it. At first I found it somewhat weird, since I thought that if the author aimed at a certain style she would not write such thing.
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Format: Kindle Edition

When I was about 50 pages into this book, I was almost certain that I was reading one of those books written during the 1990's where it was assumed to be okay if the "Main Guy" acted in a manner that was less than honorable. You know those days when the hero took the heroine's virginity via rape or other dishonorable actions? Apparently this book was published in recent years, but it read as though it was published at least a decade ago.

This book's storyline revolves around Truman Stanhome, Earl of Druridge, and his efforts to learn the truth behind the night his pregnant wife, Katherine, who was carrying a child which was not Truman's, was killed in a fire in his home - Blackmoor Hall. Druridge himself was saved by his cousin and heir, Wythe. Since the night of the fire, Druridge has been thought by some to have instigated the fire to get rid of Katherine and the babe she was carrying. In fact, Katherine's parents are pushing for Druridge to face the gallows and he is considering a Marriage of "Inconvenient" Convenience to the daughter of a very influential duke in order to have the duke's backing on his behalf.

My reasons for not being able to recommend this book:

#1 - When Druridge decides to question a young lady from the local village - book store owner, Rachel McTavish, regarding what her dead father may or may not have known about the fire, he attempts to bribe her by offering to provide her with a physican to care for her mother who is apparently at death's door. Rachel refuses. Druridge doesn't provide the physican until Rachel relents and comes to his home riding five miles in the snow on a donkey. Of course, it is too late, the mom dies. Way to go - Big. Hero. Druridge.
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