Written On Your Skin: C+
Mina Masters & Phineas Granville, Earl of Ashmore
Historical - Victorian
The society beauty who saved his life...
Beauty, charm, wealthy admirers: Mina Masters enjoys every luxury but freedom. To save herself from an unwanted marriage, she turns her wiles on a darkly handsome stranger. But Mina's would-be hero is playing his own deceptive game. A British spy, Phin Granville has no interest in emotional entanglements... until the night Mina saves his life by gambling her own.
The jaded spy who vowed to forget her...
Four years later, Phin inherits a title that frees him from the bloody game of espionage. But memories of the woman who saved him won't let Phin go. When he learns that Mina needs his aid, honor forces him back into the world of his nightmares.
In lives built on lies, love is the darkest secret of all...
Deception has ruled Mina's life just as it has Phin's. But as the beauty and the spy math wits in a dangerous dance, their practiced masks begin to slip, revealing a perilous attraction. And the greatest threat they face may not be traitors or murderous conspiracies, but their own dark desires... (back cover)
This is the sequel to Bound By Your Touch and Ms. Duran's third novel. I have only read her first, The Duke of Shadows, and if I'm remembering correctly, it was an enjoyable read.
This one was a little harder for me to get through.
Sometimes, I read something and I wonder if I'm just not smart enough to comprehend what's happening. There were times when I was reading this story and I thought, my goodness, what on Earth is happening?
Essentially, Ms. Duran's writing is complex and all-together good, but is sometimes a little superfluous. The narration is roundabout and I'm not quite sure if this is because the characters happen to be super complex and I am just... not. This is highly plausible, and if this is the case, it's no wonder the wording of the novel took me a while to get through.
Whether this is the case or not is rather irrelevant here. When it comes down to it, the superfluous writing made it hard for me to truly get into the story and more importantly, to stay with the story. Most of the time, I manage to finish romances in one-sitting. This story took me days to get through, and even though everything else was fine, I cannot say that I felt a kinship with the story.
In the end, that's what matters to me. I want to feel as though I'm walking away knowing the characters and their story without a haze of mild confusion.
Bottom line: Read but only if you're smart.