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2.8 out of 5 stars
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2.8 out of 5 stars
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When CM announced her retirement following the death of her husband a few years back, I was sad as she's done some brilliant books, and has always been an autobuy for me, but then last year (I think) she did that awful Viking book and now she's written this one, which is only ok. I am not being unkind when I say that perhaps she should take time out and enjoy her time with her 4 children, 9 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren (to whom she keeps making reference on her website), as this effort was SO not up to her standards.

When I say only ok, I mean that it is a decent enough read, but it is not the CM of old. There's not much of the fire and passion in her female lead as before, and this book has a dedication to a friend of hers, without whom she says that the book could not have been written. She goes on to repeat this, which should have been a warning that all was not as it seemed.

The tale itself is ok: Eve and two friends are being transported from London to Charleston, supposedly to marry wealthy plantation-owners, and the only requirement is that the girls be genteel ladies and virgins to boot. The ship on which they are being escorted to their fiancés starts to sink off Bermuda, and Captain Nick Scott goes to its rescue, intending to capture and loot its cargo, but when he sees a shark circling the helpless women, he chooses to rescue them instead of the bounty. Eve is meant to be a lady, but has the language of a scurvy seaman. Nick is pipped to the post for the treasure by a rival of his, Adam Bostock, who is also the man who had an affair with Nick's late wife. With this tidbit of information, I expected this rival to have a greater role in this tale, and to perhaps be a rival for Eve's affections, but this was a bit of a....red herring.

At the start of the book, Nick was in the middle of having sex with his feisty mistress, but had to leave her high and dry when told about the wreck, but once the women were ensconced in his home (barely a few hours later) he had suddenly tired of his mistress, who departed in a huff in a carriage, after being paid off, passing Eve and her friends en-route. Full stop. I had expected her to be a woman scorned, hassling Eve and trying to turn her against Nick, but nothing doing.

There wasn't enough angst between the leads, and their first full sex scene came after about 80% of the book had been read (there had been a few dalliances on the way, along with a daring-for-the-author scene where Eve attempts to self-pleasure in her bathtub, with Nick spying on her - the scene is abortive).

There was some slight intrigue, as Eve and her friends were not as they appeared, and a mixed race couple friend of Nick's briefly featured - something very daring for that time, but they were entirely superfluous to the tale. Yes, it ended with some bloodshed, some swordsmanship, but without a wedding, without emotional declarations of undying love, without explanations...disappointing. I think that this may well be the last book of `CM' that I read...if indeed she wrote it herself...
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awful plot, awful characters and the language - eurgh. These people are meant to be English during the reign of King George III (or thereabouts - it's colonial America when us Brits ruled it anyway).

However, the language is modern (they use Bloke, lass (he's Northern?), prick and other ridicolous lingo which Americans pick up from TV).

The heroine was raised in questionable (ill reputable?) surroundings (taverns?) and hence swears like a sailor. However, her swearing doesn't resemble anything that I'd expect from a English tavern maid either. And just because one is working class doesn't necessarily mean one goes into a mindless litany of profanity (she's poor not schizophrenic).

I don't expect complete accuracy but this was utterly appalling.

Ok - so story starts with 3 women (one of whom insists she's a lady) despite travelling alone (no maid or chaperon) to marry American plantation owners. There is a ship wreak and our tall, dark and handsome pirate hero saves the damsels in distress. During this highly dangerous escapade the hero loses any chance in salvaging the goods from the ship wreak but he steals a kiss from our fair heroine.

The heroine, despite being wet (in transparent muslin) surrounded by crude sailors and after a lengthy voyage is far more concerned in receiving an apology from her rescuer (for the stolen kiss) than washing off the sea water and changing into warm clothes.

The first few chapters are discussions regarding her insisting she's a well born lady, the hero unconvinced and the remaining characters vying for a ball. I gave up reading after that.
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on 22 April 2013
This was a free book that I purchased. I do enjoy good historical romances, especially with a happily ever after. This book ticked all the boxes for me. I loved the characters and I would love to read a book that was written about Adam and the sea wolf.

I would recommend this book to anyone who loves a sassy heroine, a rouge captain and appreciates a lot of raunchy
action.
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on 11 October 2013
Neither leads engaged me and I stopped mid-read. No urge to finish it just yet, but will probably do so at some point...
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