Thief of Shadows by Elizabeth Hoyt
Book Four of the Maiden Lane series
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication Date: June 26, 2012
Rating: 4 stars
Source: Publisher - won THIS giveaway
***Warning: this is an adult book, and for the eyes of mature readers***
Summary (from Goodreads):
A MASKED MAN . . .
Winter Makepeace lives a double life. By day he's the stoic headmaster of a home for foundling children. But the night brings out a darker side of Winter. As the moon rises, so does the Ghost of St. Giles-protector, judge, fugitive. When the Ghost, beaten and wounded, is rescued by a beautiful aristocrat, Winter has no idea that his two worlds are about to collide.
A DANGEROUS WOMAN . . .
Lady Isabel Beckinhall enjoys nothing more than a challenge. Yet when she's asked to tutor the Home's dour manager in the ways of society-flirtation, double-entendres, and scandalous liaisons-Isabel can't help wondering why his eyes seem so familiar-and his lips so tempting.
A PASSION NEITHER COULD DENY
During the day Isabel and Winter engage in a battle of wills. At night their passions are revealed . . . But when little girls start disappearing from St. Giles, Winter must avenge them. For that he might have to sacrifice everything-the Home, Isabel . . . and his life.
What I Liked:
I did like this book, but not as much as the odd numbers of this series. The protagonists had strong personalities in this book, and definitely fit well together. I usually love the hero, and in this case, it was no different with Winter Makepeace.
Winter is different from the other heroes of the series, because he isn't a lord, or a Duke, or some rich and mighty noble. He's a poor schoolteacher and orphan home manager. He has so much depth, but in a different way from the other male protagonists of the series. His background isn't troubled or dark (though he thinks it is), but he is filled with angst and bitterness from his work as the Ghost. Winter is so complex; he feels he has to save everyone, but he can't save himself from his depressive ways.
Isabel is a feisty heroine, and a good match for Winter. She is different from the other heroines, save Hero, because she is a lady of rank. Maybe this is my problem with the even numbered-books? They're of ladies of rank, not poor ladies. But then. Book Five deals with Lady Margaret, so maybe not. Anyway. Isabel is a widow, and she has her own problems. I like her with Winter.
The chemistry and romance between these two are different, because of Isabel's situation, and Winter's situation (not telling!). But, I found it at times endearing, and a tad irritating. It didn't take away from my overall opinion of the book though.
Another fabulous ending! I already knew the ending to this particular book, as I read Book Five before I read any of the other books. It was an excellent ending, and I am happy that this book was so fulfilling!
What I Did Not Like:
This book wasn't my favorite of the series. Like Book Two, I didn't really connect with the heroine. I didn't really feel Isabel as a person, and I didn't really like her intrusiveness. It just didn't work for her.
I was also a tiny bit bored at times. Winter isn't your, um, typical male, so the chemistry between the two characters is different. Sometimes, it's a good different, but other times, not really.
Otherwise, I really liked this books :)
Would I Recommend It:
YES! It's not my favorite (that would probably be Book One, Book Three, or Book Five), but I really liked this book. As always, this series is a fine example of amazing historical romance.
4 stars. This one was excellent, as was the rest of the series, but it wasn't my favorite. It's definitely a great addition to the series though!