I really enjoyed this one. I read it in a day (gotta love romance novels for giving me a breather between huge fantasy novels with world-ending stakes) and definitely felt all the feels. In fact, I found myself slowing down in some parts, rereading paragraphs and pages to savor the emotions. Especially the moments of heartbreak. Why do I love to savor those so?
This was my first book by Lorraine Heath, and it probably won’t be my last, because I did enjoy it so much. But. I do have a few quibbles:
First, the writing was overdone and threatened to trip up the storyline in places, and the sex scenes were sort of cringe. That could be me though. I generally prefer sex scenes that are fade-to-black with writing that isn’t quite so overwrought. I considered putting it down in the first 15% or so, until it hooked me, because of the writing. Once I was hooked, though, it became easier to ignore the bits that annoyed me about the writing.
Second, what the heck was up with that time skip? Things are cruising along and then suddenly whoops Griff and his brother are taken to the Tower because of his father’s treason and we get a “ten months later” and are supposed to buy that Griff went from spoiled second son to suspected traitor to penniless dockworker to scarred proprietor of his new club? There’s no way he acquired all of his scars in ten months, much less completed building his club. I don’t think it’s even physically possible.
I did enjoy our glimpse into the Duke of Kingsland’s side of things at the end – he’s like a blank wall for most of the book and the reveal of the motives behind some of his actions was delightful. I look forward to reading more about him in the future.
The chemistry between Kathryn and Griff was undeniable from the first pages, though obviously it changed after his return from exile, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading their love story, with all its ups and downs.
*Thanks to NetGalley and Avon for providing an e-arc to review.