Title: Passionately Yours
Series: Hellions of High Street #3
Author: Cara Elliott
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Release Date: March 4, 2014
Format: eARC via Netgalley
Buy Links: Barnes & Noble
Proper young ladies of the ton-especially ones who have very small dowries-are not encouraged to have an interest in intellectual pursuits. Indeed, the only things they are encouraged to pursue are eligible bachelors. So, the headstrong Sloane sisters must keep their passions a secret. Ah, but secret passions are wont to lead a lady into trouble . . .
With her older sisters both happily married, Caro Sloane yearns for a romantic adventure of her own. Unfortunately the muddy, sulfur-scented waters of Bath seem the least likely setting for love or excitement. But the aspiring young poet soon finds inspiration when she runs into a familiar-and achingly handsome-Scottish laird.
Visiting Bath with his sickly sister, Alec McClellan is shocked to be reunited with Caro Sloane. He hasn’t been able to forget the English beauty since their brief but exhilarating first meeting. But Bath is not nearly as serene as it appears, and soon Alec must protect Caro from a danger that threatens to extinguish the sparks flying between them. Little does he know that a bit of danger is exactly what Caro is looking for . . .
The story in a nutshell…
Alec McClellan and Caro Sloane cross paths with each other again, this time in Bath. Caro has accompanied her mother who is to take to the waters. With her two older sisters away with their husbands, she finds herself with a lot of time in her hands and itching for grand adventures that would hopefully inspire her muse to come out more. The last person she would have expected to see was Alec McClellan, whose clandestine support for a political movement in his country of Scotland has him going to Bath on business. But dangers abound and Caro for one is not fazed by them. Still, she and Alec both try to navigate these dangerous waters as well as their growing attraction and attachment to each other.
What worked for me?
I really liked Alec and Caro together. Their interesting in and of themselves individually but the scenes that I was most looking forward to are the ones where they are together. Sadly, they were fewer scenes of this kind than I would have wanted. Among those scenes where they were together, I particularly love when they talk about poetry.
Having said that, I think Caro is a really interesting heroine. She’s unconventional, that’s for sure. With a father who was determined to teach his three daughters the real ways of the world and who tagged them along his travels to exotic places when they were younger, I guess it’s no longer surprising that Caro turned out the way she is: a woman who’s independent, strong-willed, passionate, brave, a bit stubborn, and inquisitive. And I believe these are the characteristics that merit her so in Alec’s eyes.
What didn’t work for me?
I’m not sure if it was me or if it was the way the writer told the overarching mystery plot in the story but I never really did care much about that business about the intrigue surrounding Alec’s involvement with the Scottish movement. And the villain wasn’t much of a villain. I knew from the start he was bad blood and too one dimensional for my taste.
The characters were engaging enough but I sometimes felt like the plot, pacing, and some of the transitions were a bit disjointed and that prevented me from being wholly captivated by the story.
My over-all take on it?
It was still an enjoyable read although at times I would have wanted to squeeze more out of everything: the story, the character development, even the romance. Nevertheless, you have here an unconventional yet passionate young woman as a heroine, who’s not afraid to get her hands dirty and to fight for whatever she believes in so you have a winner in her.
Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review. Yes, these are my honest and personal thoughts on this book.
About the Author:
I began my writing career at age five with a number of lavishly illustrated Westerns, which were lovingly preserved for posterity by my first fan (Thanks, Mom!) As you can see, I believe in immersing myself in the mood and character of my stories!
I have since moved on to Regency England, an era that has fascinated me ever since I picked up a copy of Jane Austen’s Pride And Prejudice. (Sorry, no picture of me in my ballgown and tiara!)
Books have always been an important part of my life. I’ve always been a voracious reader, and I’ve always had a very vivid imagination . . . so much so that I think at times it worried my parents that I was so happy in my own little world, drawing pictures and creating stories. My teachers will also tell you that I was the class history geek, even in grade school. I don’t really know why, but I have always been fascinated with the past.
As an undergrad at Yale, I majored in art and went on to get a MFA in Graphic Design. So storytelling got put on the back burner for a while. But The Muse kept whispering in my ear, and one day I sat down at the keyboard . . . and realized that writing is what I love.
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Other books in the series: