Avon, Jun 2004, 5.99, 384 pp.
In 1818 London, North Sheffield, although she was born on the wrong side of the sheets, Octavia Vaux-Deventry attends a gala. Twelve years have passed since North left his beloved Vie and he still cannot resist her. Still he nods no when she walks towards him as he does not want her hurt by an association with him especially as she is engaged to the kind Lord Spinton. North knows his lifestyle of stopping criminals makes him even more unsuitable for a Duke's granddaughter like Vie is.
Spinton is concerned over the notes that Vie has been receiving that seem increasingly ominous. Without Vie's permission, he shows North the letters. North says they seem harmless and rejects the case. She knows she will keep her vows to her deceased grandfather and her dead mother to marry Spinton, but still loves Norrie. She receives a new note; a concerned Spinton shows it to Norrie, who decides to investigate. To do so Norrie says he will act as a suitor trying to steal Vie away from Spinton so that they can be seen together in public. Soon love blossoms, but honor keeps both from proceeding with what they truly want.
This is an interesting private investigative Regency romance starring two wonderful protagonists and a strong support cast especially her fiancÚ and her cousin. Especially well done is Spinton, a good man who does not deserve to be hurt. Though the hero has trouble locating the villain while his brother and the heroine have no problems locating the killer, fans will enjoy this fine historical and look forward to future stories starring the lead male's brothers.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner