by Elizabeth Batten-Carew

May 2004
ISBN: 1-58608-448-8
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Vanessa has always loved the story of Cinderella and her Prince Charming. The idea of a fairy tale happy ending appealed to a young Vanessa who was plagued by a bitter stepmother and self centered older step-sisters. Now an older and wiser Vanessa has put aside her fairy tale in favor of making her own happy ending. Now, an out of work executive assistant, Vanessa makes one little mistake that could cost her everything.

Vanessa is persuaded to make use of a discarded invitation and rented costume to attend a masquerade ball. Dressed as Cinderella, complete with glass slipper earrings, she intends to make her dreams come true if only for one night. However, Vanessa is mistaken for the original invitee, embroiled in a scandalous scene on the terrace, and kissed to within an inch of her life by the best looking Prince she’s ever seen.

In true Cinderella fashion, midnight rolls around and Vanessa takes off through the bushes, fearing her party crashing will be discovered. But it was all worth it as far Vanessa is concerned. To make things even more interesting, Vanessa accepts a job offer the next morning only to find out at the interview that her boss, Nicholas Powers, a.k.a. Prince Charming, is the man whose kisses kept her up most of the night. Even worse, the Prince has pulled out all the stops in his search for his Cinderella. Vanessa will be in a bunch of trouble if she can’t sidetrack Nick’s investigations.

Masquerade of Love was a humorous, sweetly romantic read. While it started out quite promising, I was left with a sense of dissatisfaction by the end of the book. The dialogue between the characters came across as though it were forced and stilted. The love scenes lacked any real passion and the heroine was a bit too neurotic for my tastes.

Reviewed in July 2004 by Cynthia.

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