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on 23 April 2014
I love all JAK books and have read almost everything she has written with the exception of some older books I havent been able to lay my hands on. I have long accepted that she has a formula that works for her which is what we have come to expect.
Amity Doncaster ( I love the names she gives her heroines) rescues Benedict Stanbridge on a carribean island and nurses him back to health aboard a ship they were booked on. She heads back to England but he continues on to complete his 'first and last' job for the crown on his uncle's behalf. On her return, she finds her name linked to Benedicts' in a rumoured affair which leads to her kidnap by the serial killer who had murdered several women after dressing them up as brides.
On Benedicts return, they get engaged to throw off the killer and stop the rumours and end up assisting the last inspector put in charge of the case along with Amity's sister, Penny to solve the crime.
My thoughts:
Ok, there is no paranormal activity in this book which is nice, bringing back the era of Deception, Mistress and her other non-paranormal historicals.
My first issue is the opening scene where she rescues an injured fellow passenger just before returing to the ship which JAK has used in a previous book. Surely there is an opening she has not used before that will still reflect the innate strength of her heroine?
There is no clear pattern showing how Benedict connected Leona to the crime which is strange for the author as she often shows a logical path to solving her mysteries.
His brother and sister in law, infact and his parents felt like extras she threw in. I think they might as well have not appeared for all the good they did. Except for the part where the sister in law gave Amity information on his romantic history.
The mastermind was obvious as there was no other real possible spy and I began to suspect this long before the end.

All in all, an ok JAK but you might be disappointed if you've read better titles from her. If this is your first attempt at a JAK historical, go for it then read her older books. That way you will appreciate her more.
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on 29 May 2014
No connections were made at all to the other two books - the paranormal element, the other two women, the detective agency - nothing!

I gave the book a three star on that basis only as I was so peeved! Otherwise it was an entertaining book with all the usual elements of the Quick storyline - which, incidentally, are getting tired in their repetition.
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on 24 April 2014
Had to read this in one sitting,it proved to be a wonderfully captivating storyline. I just love her light touch in her wording and character profiles. A truly worthy modern successor to Ms Heyer's crown.
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on 13 July 2014
I really enjoyed this book and had trouble putting it down - but it was meant to be a ladies of Lantern Street story the third book of the trilogy - so I expected it to be about Clarissa Slate the last of the three friends who shared a house and worked for Lantern Strreet.-it wasn't! I expected some paranormal aspects - there weren't.In fact as far as I could see the story had no connection at all to the Ladies of Lantern Street.Presumably Clarissa's story will arrive at a later date.This story was about spies and a serial killer , with a strong leading lady and her sister and two heroes.The secondary characters of the sister and the police inspector did threaten to overshadow their counterparts at times but it was in all a very satisfactory read.
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on 24 April 2014
Read 5 chapters, got bored and skipped to the end and I was not surprised. I have always pre-ordered Quick's books but this is probably the last one. I just did not find the characters engaging enough to plod through the predictable plot.
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on 2 May 2014
While being part of a series, these books do stand alone, and after reading the second book, I eagerly jumped in to this book.

I again found myself disappearing in to a well written world, full of engaging characters that I felt connected with. I love the characters the author is creating for this series to be honest, I love how they're all quick thinking and strong and characters you can really get engaged by and enjoy reading about. You can really root for them and connect with them and feel for them.

There was another well written relationship, full of suspense and drama, which was highly enjoyable. This, along with the plot was the best part of the book. There where two major plotlines, both well written, full of intrigue and mystery, and again, hard to predict. There's more than one bad guy, and different characters have different agendas, so when you think you've figured something or someone out, you're proved wrong and what you think you know is blown out of the water. The plot was complex, handled and written well, and very strong.

The one bad thing about the book, is as I've seen other people mention, the pure amount of repetition. There's a lot of it, and it can get annoying, but to be honest I was so engrossed in the book and what was happening, it reached a point where I stopped noticing.
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on 10 May 2014
Amity Doncaster is a traveller who dares to go to places that Victorian women wouldn't think to venture. She's strong and resourceful, so it's not surprising that she deals with the seriously injured Benedict Stanbridge so competently.
After returning to England she's kidnapped by a serial killer, but escapes by the use of a fan that doubles as a weapon, and that's all before her life becomes entangled even more with that of Benedict Stanbridge.
I started reading intending to just read a few chapters before bed, but I didn't want to put it down and ended up staying up until 2am when I finally finished it.
There's the expected happy ever after, but I know I'll get that from an Amanda Quick book.
The cover of the US version is much better...
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on 1 May 2014
I was a little disappointed as I enjoyed the previous 'Ladies of Lantern Street' books but I knew from JAK's website before I ordered it that this was not one of them, (For the benefit of customers who are buying the UK edition this is not a 'Ladies of Lantern Street' novel, despite what is said on the cover. I checked this with JAK via her website and the UK edition is mislabelled, she hopes to get this corrected). Having said that this was a typical Amanda Quick historical with an intelligent and spirited heroine and a worthwhile hero. Yes, it is written to a formula, most romances are; for me that just meant I knew what to expect when I picked up the book and I wasn't disappointed. It's not the best book JAK has ever written, (I expect all her regular readers have their favourite novel), but it is a long way from her worst. I consider it money well spent for several hours of happy reading
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on 25 April 2014
I read this in more or less one sitting though didn't feel it quite up to JAK's usual standard.
My main grouse is the absence of any mention of Lantern Street. Was I reading so fast I missed it?
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on 7 May 2014
I was expecting this book to be about the Third Lady in the trio previously covered by The Ladies of Lantern Street. However, it is a book about someone completely different! Saying that, I loved the book. Amanda Quick is one of my favourite authors, and being one of Jayne Ann Krenz's other names, only enhances the experience.
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