My name is Kimberly and I'm the reader/reviewer behind Wit and Sin. Wit and Sin is a website that provides honest reviews and publicity. I primarily read and review Romance titles, but I also review Urban Fantasy, New Adult, Young Adult, Mystery, and Non-Fiction titles. In addition to Wit and Sin, I am a reviewer for Joyfully Reviewed (pen name: Shayna) and Romance Junkies (pen name: Lily).
Dearest Rogue has everything I look for in a romance – smart characters, a passionate love story, engaging dialogue, a vibrant supporting cast, fast-paced action, and an overall story you just don’t want to end. Elizabeth Hoyt is a historical romance virtuoso and her writing shines in this eighth Maiden Lane book.
Phoebe is like sunshine; she brings brightness and warmth to all those around her. She’s also blind and living in a time where society in general is more apt to try and take advantage of her or see her as less than she is. Because of this, her brother tries to wrap her in cotton and make sure that no harm will ever come to her. But Phoebe is a lively, curious woman who can’t thrive in a cage, and she doesn’t take kindly to her brother restricting her movements even more and making the dour Captain James Trevillion her guard dog on top of it. Only having Trevillion around isn’t exactly the hardship Phoebe thought it would be. Trevillion is serious and protective, to be sure, but the wounded former dragoon is also the man who definitely made this reader swoon with his love for Phoebe. Trevillion sees Phoebe for the vibrant, intelligent, sensual woman that she is and the two of them bring each other to life. Trevillion’s time as a dragoon gave him a purpose and was a welcome distraction from the ghosts of his past. With Phoebe in danger, however, he’s very worried he’ll fail her and that just about broke my heart. It was lovely to watch him heal with Phoebe’s help. The two of them simply fit like lock and key.
It’s no simple matter for Phoebe and Trevillion to get their happily ever after – the differences in their age and social class can’t simply be ignored in the eighteenth century – but Ms. Hoyt is never one to go the traditional route when crafting her romances, and I’m glad of it. Trevillion and Phoebe’s romance just about made me melt – it’s passionate, charming, emotional, and captivating all at once. Only sheer exhaustion kept me from reading Dearest Rogue all through the night. As it was, I picked up the book and finished it immediately upon waking, unable to resist the lure of Phoebe and Trevillion’s romance.
Outside the romance there is the not-so-small matter of who is trying to kidnap Phoebe and why. Though readers will likely guess who is behind the kidnapping attempts, that doesn’t make the storyline any less interesting (in fact, I’d say it’s more so because of this). The kidnapping plotline brings with it appearances from past Maiden Lane heroes and heroines. I loved revisiting the men and women who endeared themselves to me in past books and it was a true delight to get a peek into their lives now. Dearest Rogue also furthers readers’ acquaintance with Valentine Napier, Duke of Montgomery, an intriguing, scene-stealing manipulator who is impossible to resist.
The Maiden Lane series is filled with wonderful stories that I absolutely love and I can’t pick just one to be my favorite. That being said, Dearest Rogue definitely ranks as one of my favorites in the series. The only issue I had with the book is that it left me wanting to dive right into the next story, Sweetest Scoundrel. Ms. Hoyt sure knows how to tease readers, because I know I’m not the only one who’ll be clamoring for more after the introduction of Eve Dinwoody (heroine of Sweetest Scoundrel). While I wait, I’ll be sure to re-read Dearest Rogue. In fact, upon finishing I was already looking forward to diving into Phoebe and Trevillion’s book again – it’s just that addictive.
FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.