by Julie Beard

December 2003
ISBN: 0-425-19439-6
Reviewer Graphic Button Berkley
Mass Market Paperback

The Midnight Angel travels London’s streets, shrouded in darkness. His shadowy countenance hides his identity, but he is well-known among the ladies of the evening. He is said to be either a savior of fallen women, or a clever procurer who entices women away for his own dark purposes. Whatever his plans, he is undeniably well-versed in London’s underworld.

Lady Lydia Beaumont has an unconventional marriage. Her dying husband was one of society’s most notorious rakes and his rescue of common-born Lydia was the talk of the ton. He made her his countess and dowered her with his fortune - all without benefit of the marriage bed. As his health continues to diminish, Lydia is devoted to him - and her causes - with his blessing. She is deeply disturbed to learn that his daughter, unknown to him all these years, has been abducted. As she tries to solve the mystery, it becomes evident that even her many resources will not be enough. She will need more help - from the Midnight Angel and her long-lost love, known about town as Lord “Clue.”

The Midnight Angel has all the makings of a splendid historical romantic suspense. However, some of the elements are resolved fairly early in the book, leaving only the unmasking and capture of the kidnapper for the very end. While this may not matter to some readers, I found myself wanting to extend the tension a bit longer. The reason for the abduction and the true villain of the story were very intriguing, as were some of the secondary characters. Lord “Clue” bears a striking resemblance to another famous literary sleuth, and has a number of devils to overcome. I recommend it more for the fans of author Julie Beard and her style, than for the romance or mystery elements.

Reviewed in November 2003 by Paula.

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