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Book CoverGwen’s review of One Touch of Scandal by Liz Carlyle
Historical romance released by Avon 28 Sep 10

Sybil and I were trying to figure out if this book was historical or paranormal.  We landed on “historical with important paranormal elements.”  How’s that for decision making?  Solidly in the middle.

In spite of our collective irresolute tendencies, I have decided that this could best be described as a good historical romance that uses the paranormal to help tell the story and move the plot forward.  Ahh, decisiveness. 

In One Touch of Scandal, Liz Carlyle has written a mid-Victorian era historical that has a hero with ESP and a heroine in a very serious pickle.  Hero, Adrian, belongs to an ancient organization that supports  and protects women and children with the Gift or those who are descended from people with the Gift. Heroine, Grace, is a governess who is suspected of murdering her fiancee/employer.

Adrian and Grace come together in a very believable and interesting manner that I won’t spoil for you.  In fact, that statement of believable and interesting could be said about the book.  The ending is a little sugary for my taste, but I still enjoyed it.

I am happy that both Adrian and Grace are flawed people who are sincerely trying their best to live with the hands dealt them.  I also like that they don’t have prideful TSTL moments.  It’s nice to read about a couple that I can identify with, not that I want to shake and say, “Get out of your own way, you idjit!”

The murder and suspense elements in the book are quite good.  There is a plot twist that is a ton of fun to read and downright scary good.  Loved it.

The only reason I’m giving this a B+, and not an A, is the ending.  It was good – just a bit saccharin for me.

If you’re a Liz Carlyle fan, you need this book.  If you like a little paranormal spicing up your historical, you’ll love this book.  It’s the start of a new series that I think will be tremendous fun to read.

Gwens IconGrade: B+


Desperation drove her into the arms of a devil…

Grace Gauthier had taken a position as governess hoping to find security and peace in a life that had very little of either. She’s always yearned for a good marriage, a family, and a home, but it was not to be. And when the brutal murder of her employer leaves her unprotected and alone—as Scotland Yard’s prime suspect—she has no one to turn to except the mysterious and reclusive Lord Ruthveyn.

A dark-eyed Lucifer, Ruthveyn guards his secrets carefully. His shadowed past as the Queen’s most trusted agent in India is the stuff of whispered rumor, as is his mixed ancestry. Deeply moved by her plight—and haunted by her beauty—Ruthveyn is determined to save Grace by unmasking a killer. But his growing passion for her soon places his own heart at risk and threatens to expose his dark gifts—and his dark society—to the world…

Read an excerpt here.