I was lucky enough to win a copy of Shehanne Moore’s new release Loving Lady Lazuli in a recent giveaway. Here’s a little about the story:
Ten years ago sixteen year old Sapphire, the greatest jewel thief England has ever known, ruined Lord Devorlane Hawley’s life. Now she’s dead and buried, all the respectable widow, Cassidy Armstrong, wants is the chance to prove who she really is.
But not only does her new neighbor believe he knows that exactly, he’s hell-bent on revenge. All he needs is the actual proof. So when he asks her to choose between being his mistress, or dangling on the end of a rope, only Sapphire can decide…
What’s left for a woman with nowhere left to go, but to stay exactly where she is?
And hope, that when it comes to neighbors, Devorlane Hawley won’t prove to be the one from hell.’
Loving Lady Lazuli is a tense, character driven historical romance which gives the reader a unique perspective on life and love in Regency England. The power of society and its harshness when crossed is implicit from the first chapter. Lord Devorlane Hawley returns to his ancestral home ten years after he left in disgrace. Now the unexpected fifth Duke of Chessington he wants revenge for his ten years of exile where severe mistreatment changed him from a naive youth to a cynical man.
The prodigal is thrown into an unexpected home-coming party. Bored a young woman attracts him. Is she the girl who caused his disgrace a decade ago? Cassidy fears her secret is uncovered and leaves the party abruptly. With the threat of the noose for being a jewel thief hanging over her Cassidy (Sapphire) tries to find the documents that prove her claim to Barwych hall.
Their relationship is laced with misunderstanding, humour and poignancy. Both distrust, threaten and cheat each other. Devorlane demands she becomes his mistress for his silence and help. Cassidy (Sapphire) agrees until she discovers his life threatening secret and reclaims the advantage. The historical attraction between Devorlane and Cassidy (Sapphire) rekindles and ignites despite his hateful behaviour and her scheming. When their passion overwhelms secrets emerge which affect them profoundly and make them face their emotional involvement.
Memorable characters give this unusual historical romance a realistic edge which make Loving Lady Lazuli a passionate, enthralling read.
I won a copy of this book from the author in a giveaway.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Shehanne Moore is a Scottish author, who writes gritty, witty, as much risky as risqué, historical romance, set wherever takes her fancy. Stories that detail the best and worst of human behaviour, as opposed to pouts and flounces. For years she worked at various things, while pursuing her dream of becoming a published writer, so she was gobsmacked to sell her book, The Unraveling of Lady Fury, written in three months, to U.S. publishers, Etopia Press, six days after subbing it.
Shehanne still lives in Scotland, with her husband Mr Shey. She has two daughters. When not writing intriguing historical romance, where goals and desires of sassy, unconventional heroines and ruthless men, mean worlds do collide, she fantasizes about cleaning the house, plays the odd musical instrument and loves what in any other country, would not be defined, as hill-walking.