The book starts out with Colin Eversea about to hang for murder, rescued at the last possible second. His rescuer turns out to be a woman named Madeleine Greenway. Madeleine wants nothing more than to be rid of Colin, and be given a handsome reward that will allow her to start a new life. Colin needs Mad's help to return to his family in time to stop his brother from marrying the love of his life, Louisa. Naturally, Colin and Mad find themselves succumbing to mutual attraction instead.
I liked that Madeleine was such an independent and capable character. She's a mercenary, a clever planner, and a survivor of great tragedy.
There's a kind of mystery to be solved following Colin's rescue, regarding who was behind hiring Madeleine and why someone then tried to have her killed. All of this made for a fairly interesting plot with a few twists I didn't really see coming.
I liked Madeleine's character, but I so wish the author had taken more time to delve into her background. Every time I was given a tiny hint as to the things that had happened to her or what she did in her line of work, I thought a huge opportunity had been wasted. There's a great three dimensional character here being kept flat because of a boring story. Colin's character was totally cliched and uninteresting to me, but again he could have been more. Had this book been more character driven, instead of plot driven, it could have been awesome.
I just didn't connect to the romance between Madeleine and Colin. Part of it was that their characters were underdeveloped. Part of it was an inexplicable lack of chemistry. But I think my biggest hang-up with their relationship was the Colin/Louisa conflict. By the I was 80% through the book and Colin was still determined that he wanted to marry Louisa, I was
If you want to read this as a historical suspense novel, or perhaps as a mystery, you might find it enjoyable. If you're looking for a character driven historical romance though, look elsewhere. This isn't a poorly written book, but it isn't at all to my liking. 2.5 stars.