I first read this book a few years ago and buddy reviewed it with Holly here
. I've always been wanting to catch up with the series so I thought I'd go back and start from the beginning. I'm glad I did because Perils of Pleasure was as much fun to read the second time around.
Since I can't seem to form coherent sentences, please bear with me while I muddle through my thoughts. LOL
Since the time of William the Conqueror (1066AD), the Everseas and the Redmonds have been at odds. Some say it started with a pig, but no matter what, these two families are cursed to hurt each other at least once a generation. And who but the Redmonds can be at fault for Colin Eversea ending up in prison and set to hang? And the lone witness to attest to his innocence vanished in the dead of night - who can it be but a Redmond's fault?
Colin Eversea is the youngest son of his family. He's a charming man, always quick to get himself into and out of trouble. But this time trouble has caught up to him. And even when he's rescued at the last minute (as he's walking up to the gallows) trouble is still following him...and now his rescuer.
Madeleine was hired to rescue Colin from hanging. She did that. And instead of receiving payment, she gets a bullet for her troubles. Luckily for her, Colin knocked her down and saved her life. Now these two decidedly different people from different walks of life are on the hunt together - to find out who's trying to kill her, who hired her to save Colin and where did the witness to Colin's innocence go?
Perils of Pleasure worked for me on many different levels. First of all, despite the fact that Colin is a wanted man and these two are scrabbling around all over London in disguise, I found the whole thing very light-hearted. Part of that is Colin's charm and general outlook on life. Which is directly opposite Madeleine's. She's been through some hard stuff and she's done what she's had to to survive. She's not hard but she is practical and she hasn't had much room in her life for fun. With those two different personalities, the only thing keeping them together is the search for the truth. I liked that these two were uneasy allies at first. But the more that bad things happened to them, the more they learned they could rely on the other. And I loved that Colin saw Madeleine as a challenge. He's used to being able to charm his way out of everything and Madeleine doesn't cave to his wiles like other women do. But we the reader know how hard Madeleine is fighting to keep Colin at a distance. So delicious!
Now there are a few obstacles to these two ever being together. First, Madeleine is set to go to America. She wants to start a new life for herself and the fee she would get for Colin's escape was the last bit of moolah she needed to get away. Second, she is not from the ton. And third, Colin is in love with a woman who is days away from marrying his brother. So there's a time limit to them finding the truth and him getting home in time to stop the wedding. With these kind of impediments, a romance between Colin and Madeleine seems impossible. And that's what makes me love it! Despite all those problems, Colin and Madeleine fall for each other and they both fought it until they couldn't fight it anymore. *sigh*
The Perils of Pleasure gets a B+
from me. I highly recommend it.