WHAT AN EARL WANTS
Mistress of her craft Michaels uses her signature wit to introduce the characters and initial plot, and then spins a multilayered tale that slowly becomes darker and darker — until the reader is hooked by the myriad twists and turns leading to the dénouement. Here is a novel that holds attention because of the intricate story, engaging characters and wonderful writing.
Since their mother shot their father and ran off with her lover, the Redgraves have lived scandalous lives. When her parents are killed in a coaching accident and her half-brother becomes the Earl of Saltwood’s ward, Jessica Linden is determined to remove him from the arrogant Gideon Redgrave’s grasp. Instead, she is drawn to Gideon by the hint he drops about her parents’ murder. Gideon is shocked when Jessica appears immune to his charms, and intrigued by her streak of independence. That she is curious about her father’s death is even more important to him. They slowly unearth disturbing information about a possibly defunct Hellfire Club whose members are dying in suspicious accidents. The mystery evolves — and so does their attraction. (HQN, Dec., 344 pp., $7.99)