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on 19 February 2010
This book follows on from others by Elizabeth Boyle which introduced our heroine, Philippa/Pippin Gossett. Much time has passed and in this story Pippin is over forty and a widow. By means of flashbacks we learn about Pippin's encounters with Captain Thomas Dashwell, from a moonlit meeting on a beach when she was seventeen, to an affair four years later, and then to the events that separated them apparently forever - with Pippin marrying Lord Gossett.

When Pippin meets Dashwell again twenty-something years later she finds a rather different man than the one she remembers. Dash is now drunk on brandy most of the time and his life has been blighted by the fact that he lost her. As secrets are revealed and as the story gradually discloses the truth of their relationship, it seems that they are further apart than ever. Can they find happiness?

I found most of this story fairly slow, with the flashbacks more irritating than helpful. I had read much of Pippin's story in previous books and so knew why she married Gossett, although this wasn't made particularly clear in this book. However the final fifth of the book, when Pippin is kidnapped and is on Dash's boat, was really good fun and I enjoyed it very much.

I wasn't sure of Pippin's and Dash's motives for much of their behaviour previously. Both have behaved badly in some ways and there seems to have been a real lack of communication between them. I wasn't entirely convinced either that Dash would continue his life of sobriety. However having enjoyed the last part of this book makes me feel overall that it was a worthwhile read.

Originally published for Curled Up With A Good Book © Helen Hancox 2010
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VINE VOICEon 1 May 2009
Prim and proper Philippa, Lady Gossett has vivid memories of a dashing pirate, the kisses he stole and the love the pair shared together. Now, twenty years after she made the decision to marry another to save his life, she finds herself back in the company of Captain Thomas Dashwell.

The twenty years have not been kind to Captain Dashwell and he is embittered by the woman that broke his heart and betrayed him. Yet she has haunted his dreams since they were together and since he can't forget her, he'll just have to try and win her back!

This is, I believe, the final book in the Bachelor Chronicles series (after Something About Emmaline,This Rake of Mine,Love Letters from a Duke and Confessions of a Little Black Gown). This book does mention things that happened in the previous books in the series but probably does stand alone well enough.

The book is told with the use of flashbacks but this doesn't stop the story from flowing nicely. The flashbacks were beautifully written and you really felt the emotions from Dash and Pippin as they desperately tried to stay together. Despite changing over the twenty years, I also liked the 'present day' scenes and both Dash and Pippin didn't lose their sparkle with age!

I have to admit I was torn between giving this book 4 or 5 stars. It really was an excellent book but the ending just didn't have the same emotional impact as the rest of the book for me and so I decided to go with 4 stars. Despite that, it's still an excellent book and one that I really couldn't put down. It's emotional, romantic and a really good read. Definitely recommended.
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