Dear Mrs. Balogh,
Several of my friends once gave me tips on which books from your lengthy backlist I needed to try. The Dark Angel series was mentioned by almost everyone. Well, they can pat themselves on the back because this is a great start to a wonderful series.
Jennifer Winwood, newly arrived in London and betrothed to a handsome man she adores, is bursting with happy expectations. But she gets caught in the middle of a nasty feud between her fiancÃƒÆ’Ã‚ © and the Earl of Thornhill when each decides to use her to hurt the other. When the dust settles, she finds herself forced to marry the earl in a union that seems to have nothing but bitterness and despair to offer both of them.
I loved the hero. Loved his darkness. Loved the way he realized what an ass he was being and how he changed. The scene when he discovers just how much his little revenge scheme has cost Jennifer, physically, and what she was almost willing to pay to avoid marriage to him is wrenching. I also liked how Gabriel didn’t start out trying to ruin Jennifer, just get back at the villain. His motives were good even if they did backfire and he was immediately willing to make amends to Jennifer for what he’d caused her. I loved that he wanted to spend the rest of his life trying to make up to Jennifer for his assness.
I liked the heroine once she got over her Seventeen magazine obsession about when Lionel was gonna snog her. Loved how she rose to the challenge of flipping the ton the bird and how she matured as a person. Loved how she didn’t want to wallow in her hurt but was willing to make the best of the marriage she got.
The villain was such a slimy, sleazebucket. I really enjoyed watching him get his. The scene of his downfall was a bit contrived but I guess when you’ve got a 218 page limit, you have to employ that kind of thing.
For readers who haven’t tried your earlier trad regency books, this is a great one to start out with and it makes me thankful to have you as an author.