(Rengency Reformers #2)
Author: Jenny Holiday
Length: 287 pages
Entangled/ Select Histoical
Rating: 4 Stars
Danger and desire are explosive in the newest romance from Select Historical!
She would never bow to any man...
Trevor Bailey is on the cusp of opening the greatest hotel in London. His days as a gutter snipe are behind him, as he enjoys a life of wealth, society, and clandestine assignments as a spy in the service of the Crown. Until one tumultuous night churns up the past he'd long left behind...
Turned out by her employer for her radical beliefs, Lucy Greenleaf reaches out to the man who was once her most beloved friend. She never expected that the once-mischievous Trevor would be so handsome and gentleman-like and neither can deny the instant attraction.
But Lucy's reformer ways pose a threat to the hotel's future and his duties as a spy. Now Trevor must choose between his new life and the woman he's always loved... -Goodeads
The Likelihood of Lucy as a story, is an exercise in plot superfluity.
The story of Trevor and Lucy's hardscrabble childhood on the streets of The Seven Dials, their respective betterment of circumstance, the unfortunate night of Lucy's sacking, and their subsequent reunion, makes for more than enough of a "sweeping saga". There is absolutely no need for Lucy's obsessive loyalty to the dead feminist, Mary Wollstonecraft, that seems to be more of a bane than a salve to her already precarious existence. Likewise,Trevor's half-hearted forays into the world of espionage, when he is a hotelier, a mining magnate, and has rather lucrative shipping endeavors, prove just as annoyingly pointless.
Given the fact that this is a Regency Reformers novel, there is a bit of cause related story to be expected. The problem here lies in the fact that the characters of Lucy and Trevor are so well suited for each other, and their storyline so complete, that it leaves no room for the all important "causes" to which the two are attached.
What does stand out about this read however, is the wonderful continuity of Trevor and Lucy's story; across both time and chapters. Lucy shines as both Trevor's "reason to be" and a wonderful leading woman in her own right. The latter is best exemplified in her role as manager of Trevor's hotel, The Jade.
Trevor is a wonderful leading man in every respect. He proves time and time again, from childhood on, that he is capable of the selfless, all enduring love that all women crave. His being only for Lucy. His one and only goal has always been, and continues to be, seeing to it that Lucy is safe and happy. Whatever the costs. His ability to treasure Lucy without objectifying her, is a welcome breath of fresh air to the modern reader.
This review would not be complete without a nod to Earl and Countess Blackstone, who readers first met in The Miss Mirren Mission, book one of this series.
Kudos are also due to one Viscount Galsmith, baddie extraordinaire.