Queue My Review

September 6, 2008

Review: The Edge of Desire by Stephanie Laurens

Filed under: Review — Tags: , , , , — jjmachshev @ 8:30 am
The Edge of Desire by Stephanie Laurens

“The Edge of Desire” is Stephanie Laurens‘ sixth book of her ‘Bastion Club’ regency novels. In short, the heroes of these novels have returned from the Napoleonic wars and found themselves prime bait for the matchmaking mamas of the ton. They formed their own club (hence the name) and decided to make their own decisions regarding their future wives as they have each now succeeded to their titles and need to marry to carry on the family name. I’ve read each of her Bastion Club novels and I think this one is my favorite so far.

Christian returned from the war to discover the woman he loved hadn’t waited for him as she promised. He feels anger and bitterness that she broke her vow to him and has done his best to avoid contact as much as possible — until he receives a visit from her, asking for his help. As much as he would like to turn her away…he just can’t.

Lady Letitia would rather handle problems by herself. But when her despised husband is murdered and suspicion falls on her beloved (and missing) brother, Letitia knows that only Christian can help her now. She’s well aware of what he thinks of her and knows that this would be the perfect opportunity for him to gain revenge for her ‘desertion’, but the honor of her brother and family is at stake. There’s nothing she won’t do to gain Christian’s assistance.

I, like many of Laurens’ fans, had begun to feel her novels had become stale, that I was reading the same novel over and again, just with different characters. I’m glad to say that with only a few exceptions, this novel has the mystery and pacing and fire of her earlier works. Ms. Laurens is a master of description, at times she tends to go a bit overboard, but she sets a stage that allows the reader to practically ‘see’ the balls and gowns, and houses and streets of London. This pacing of this novel was also much better than previous ones. The intricacies of the relationship and the mystery were slowly unfurled at an even pace throughout the book. There were only a few times that I felt any kind of lag in the plot.

My only real complaint, and how shocking is this, is her handling of the love scenes. She writes with passion and sensuality as she always does, but I also felt she was a bit too ‘flowery’ in this book. It came dangerously close to ‘purple prose’ and it felt like her editors had requested her to make the love scenes longer, so she added adjectives. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still hot. It just felt more forced than her earlier works (and this is just my opinion).

In any event, if you like regency romances and you haven’t read Stephanie Laurens, I really think you should. As her wildly popular ‘Cynster’ novels are now all first released in hardcover, these Bastion Club novels are the only paperback-first releases left for her fans. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Christian and Letitia and the battles they faced together and within themselves to finally come together after all their struggles and sacrifices. I’m also eagerly awaiting the last book of this series where the mystery of Dalziel will finally be revealed. His book, which according to her web site is entitled “The Mysterious Dalziel,” is to be released in Fall 2009. It’s already on my ‘buy’ list.

Until next time…


Reviewed by Julie


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