Marlowe is a pickpocket, a housebreaker—and a better actress than any professional on the stage. She runs with the Covent Garden Cubs, a gang of thieves living in the slums of London’s Seven Dials. It’s a fierce life, and Marlowe has a hard outer shell. But when she’s alone, she allows herself to think of a time before—a dimly remembered life when she was called Elizabeth.
Maxwell, Lord Dane, is intrigued when his brother, a hired investigator, ropes him into his investigation of the fiercely beautiful hellion. He teaches her to navigate the social morass of the ton while his brother attempts to confirm her true identity. But Marlowe will not escape so easily. Instead, Dane is drawn into her world of danger and violence, where the student becomes the teacher and love is the greatest risk of all.
Marlowe, has always been a thief and housebreaker, and has always tried to prove herself as one of the “boys”. But there is a part of her life she doesn’t remember, when she was young and her name was Elizabeth, a life that is no longer hers. But during a housebreaking mission, she is taken against her will and placed in the hands of Maxwell, Lord Dane. Maxwell is furious at his brother for putting a scrawny and ill-mannered chit in his hands to take care of. That is the last thing that he needs. Maxwell, doesn’t think much of Marlowe, except she is a danger to society, and he has a hard time convincing her of the truth of her true identity. Marlowe has lived her life on the streets, but she suspects that she may be the woman they are looking for, a woman with a future, and she wants to believe in that future, and she can’t deny the attraction that she feels for Maxwell, but there is a danger to them being together, a man who would destroy her before he could ever let her go…
Wow!! That is all I have to say about this one. Shana Galen is such a talented writer, and I feel like every time I read her, I am amazed by how well I enjoy her stories. I would say she is a top favorite author of mine, and always has been since I first started reading her. I wasn’t sure what to think about this story before I started reading it, but once I got into the first chapter, I knew I was in for a fun and wild ride…and I was right. You never know what a story will bring out to the reader, but this story by far gave me thrills and laughter and pure excitement. After finishing this story I just want to do a little happy dance in the street under the moonlight LOL kind of crazy with the cold weather, but I had such a fun time reading this one, and it has been a while since I have enjoyed a book so much.
The story is pretty basic, at first you view it as an ordinary story, but somehow this story turned from ordinary to extraordinary. You don’t see it coming until you are fully entrenched. The story starts off with Marlowe on one of her pickpocketing days, and she was such a hoot, I loved her…I really found her amusing and quite entertaining. She definitely has spirit and isn’t afraid to show it. She hates her “bubbies” and thinks of them as useless, which was hilarious to me, on how she views her body. Like being a woman is a curse. But in her lifestyle choice, it is a curse. What she does, being a beautiful woman has little purpose, at least until she meets a man that makes her quiver in delight and desire. Maxwell, is a lord of the Ton, involved in politics, and thinks of himself as content. But when Marlowe is brought to him and he is forced to take care of her until she is ready to meet her parents, he must groom and teach her to be a lady, and Maxwell can’t think of a worst fate being placed upon him. I loved the sparks between these two, and boy can they fight. I loved their interaction and once they got past the whole kidnapping issue, and Marlowe came to terms with what was happening, their relationship really started to progress. Their connection was so different and I just had the hardest time putting this one down, the reader starts to see how perfect they are for each other in the end, because what they have together is what is more important than trivial things.
This author has succeeded in beginning a series with a solid beginning, a tale of adventure, passion, danger and fascinating twists and turns that will enthrall you completely. Entertainment and laughter on every page. A PURE DELIGHT!!
Marlowe reached for the dagger, but he was faster, grasping her hands and pinning them at her side. She lost her balance and settled on top of him, and he pushed her down so that she would fall forward if she tried to swing her legs out from under her.
“What, exactly, are you doing?”
She couldn’t answer, not with the dagger in her mouth, and she shook her head, shaking her arms to indicate she wanted to be freed from his hold.
“What’s the matter? Can’t speak with a knife between your lips? Hazard of your profession, I assume.” He began to rise, sliding her along his body, as he did so. Even beneath the layers of bedclothes, she could feel the strength and power of him. His hands, remarkably strong, held hers at her sides. Nothing she did would free them. He was far too strong. It was times like this she hated being a woman. Gideon would have freed himself easily. He was also tall enough that he wouldn’t have needed to climb onto the bed.
When the swell was sitting, with Marlowe conveniently in his lap, he leaned forward so his face was inches from hers. “Drop the knife.”
She wanted to tell him it was a dagger, a subtle but important distinction, but she couldn’t speak and hold on to her weapon. And she couldn’t think very well with her body pressed against his. Something about their positions made her skin tingle and her belly flutter. She should want to pull away. Instead, she fought the urge to push closer, to rock against him. What the bloody hell was wrong with her?
“Drop the knife or I’ll take it.”
She laughed. Just let him try.
To her surprise, he leaned closer, his lips moving so near to hers she could smell his breath. Like the rest of him, it smelled clean. She was so intent upon smelling his breath, so intent upon the heat of his body pulsing against hers, she forgot to move her head back, and she jolted in shock when his lips touched hers. What was he doing? Kissing her?
But then his teeth flashed and closed on the dagger’s blade, and she reacted too slowly. He yanked it from her mouth, and she had no choice but to let it go or risk the blade cutting the corners of her sensitive flesh.
“Bastard!” she yelled. He released her hands then, allowing the dagger to drop into one of his. She swung at him, and her fist collided with a satisfying thunk against his cheek. But her satisfaction was short-lived as he recovered easily and flipped her over. Suddenly, she was beneath him on the bed, and all the warmth from the bedclothes and his body were covering her. She bucked immediately, trying to throw him off, but he was solid and heavy, and when his hands grasped her wrists and pinned them to the pillow, she knew she was trapped.
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