Review: An Impetuous Abduction by Patricia Frances RowellMonday, June 9, 2008 13:00
An Impetuous Abduction is a Regency romance which gets off to a fast paced start, as Persephone Proserpina Hathersage is carried off by a rough fellow with an eye patch and a hook for a hand. He calls himself Lord Hades, as befits someone who has kidnapped Persephone (or Phona), the daughter of Demetra. Lord Hades is not who he appears to be, and his actions will have major consequences for him and Phona both. This was an entertaining romance, which I read quickly, despite some questions and concerns.
For the first half of the book, this was a “Cabin Romance” with only Phona, Hades and Hades’ servant Aelfred together in a remote location. These kind of set-ups can be fun, as they provide a lot of time for the hero and heroine to get to know each other. After Phona is returned to her parents, we return to Regency Ton setting. I wasn’t sure if I liked this development, but in the latter half of the book, Rowell shows quite a deft hand with the humor. I very much enjoyed the depiction of Phona and Hades’ families.
Ms. Rowell blogged recently about her inspiration for the book, which was, not surprisingly, the Greek myth of Persephone and Demeter. Her author’s note at the end of the book was very interesting as well, about the theme of the mother/daughter relationship in her novel as well as the original story. Phona’s mother Demetra, is an immature beauty who constantly gets her way through tears and the vapors. She is a bit annoying, but it is clear that she genuinely loves her daughter. Phona has always felt dominated by her mother’s personality and intentions. I actually felt that Phona was the least interesting character in the book. Perhaps because she has always faded into the background due to her mother, I didn’t feel a distinct personality until later in the book, which affected the romance at the beginning. I wasn’t sure what attracted Hades so.
Hades (and we do find out his real name later), was a tormented hero, more vivid than Phona. He is a good man, caring and charming, but he fears that Phona will never be comfortable with the loss of his hand. His struggle made sense to me, and the angst was never taken too far. They had good chemistry (despite Phona’s blandness), and the romance developed at a good pace. Good love scenes too.
I did have some questions about the timeline of some of the events. It was unclear how long ago Hades had lost his hand. If he had lost it long ago, I’m not sure how Phona wouldn’t have clued into his identity sooner. I also wanted to know when certain accusations against Hades had taken place. I’m trying not to be spoiler-y here, but I kept wondering, because certain things seemed odd in light of other events. Rar, I’m being too vague. But overall, this was a solid romance which kept my interest and has me curious to try other books by Rowell.
Moments after Persephone Hathersage stumbled upon a band of thieves, the terrified young lady was spirited away on horseback! But trepidation soon gave way to scandalous desire when her brooding captor tenderly nursed a feverish Phona back to health.
Spellbound by the battle-scarred blackguard who kept her confined in an ancient fortress, Phona knew any impropriety with this nameless rogue would tarnish her reputation forever, not to mention plunge her into even further peril! However, appearances could be quite deceiving….
Read an excerpt here