Tuesday, September 15, 2015

A Noble Masquerade - Regency Meets Suspense!

 Kristi Ann Hunter is launching her first book, A Noble Masquerade this week,  and I had the privilege of reading an advance copy.  I found all the elements of a good story between 361 pages including romance, intrigue and a bit of old fashioned faith.

Lady Miranda dreads the approaching London Season. This will be her sister Georgina's first season and her fourth. As such, she is feeling the impending doom of spinsterhood. With this in mind, we begin our story with her chance meeting of Marlow, the new valet of her brother, Griffith, the Duke of Riverton.  Undone by this handsome valet, she encounters him quite by accident again and again.  He seems to be everywhere she turns. She is intrigued by him  yet keeps up appearances as mistress of the household for her brother.  

When Miranda was young, she began to write letters to the mysterious Duke of Marshington, a school chum of Griffith. It started innocently as journal entries where she had the freedom to confide her thoughts and dreams. The letters were never mailed. Ever efficient Marlow, finding one of these letters. mailed it quite by accident to the long lost duke. This is where the story gets hot. Nobody knows where the elusive duke is or how to reach him, yet Marlow seems to find the address and a week later a reply arrives. When she decides to respond to the reply she relies on Marlow to post it. Her feelings are swayed by him yet she is secretly delighted with the attention of the duke. Marlow is charismatic and well turned out but he is a valet. As suspicious valet nonetheless but he could hardly compete with a duke.

All is not as it should be when the season opens. Balls, parties and card games lead to day time visits to the ladies at home. Miranda's thoughts are on the letters and hopes of meeting Marshington face to face. When she does meet him it isn't at all as she dreamed of. Sparks fly when he is finally revealed to her. Her world is turned upside down as the game is up an underlying tale emerges that takes this story to another level. It is, after all set in the days of the Napoleonic wars and not all are loyal to the crown.  You will have to read the book to get any more information on this front!

There is a lot of chemistry among Miranda, Marlow and Marshington. To see it on film is one thing but to find it in a book is a good recommendation for the author.  

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