Review: His Lordship’s Secret (His Lordship Mysteries #1) by Samantha SoRelle
Alfred Pennington, the Earl of Crawford, knows someone wants him dead. An illicit boxing match seems the perfect opportunity to hire a champion fighter to watch his back, but Alfie is shocked to recognize the beaten and bloody challenger as his childhood friend, Dominick, one of the few people who knows the truth about Alfie’s past.
Life has been hard for Dominick, so he can’t believe his luck when Alfie—now with fine manners and a fancy title—offers him a chance to escape the slums in order to catch a potential killer. That’s difficult enough, but not falling in love with the refined, confident man his friend has become may prove trickier still.
The investigation draws the two men closer than ever, but it becomes clear that their years apart may prove too much to overcome. As the danger mounts, can they find their way through the past to a future together? Or will hidden secrets cost them their happiness… and their lives?
His Lordship’s Secret is the first novel in the His Lordship’s Mysteries series.
Dear Samantha SoRelle,
I enjoyed this story more than I thought I would, but also please beware that so far there are four books in these series and I am not sure if the fourth one is the last one. I only read the first one so far and it does not end in any cliffhanger, more over it looks like the same couple will investigate different mysteries in every book, but I am always wary as to how an author will handle the actual relationship, because it is very rare that I have seen that there is enough to maintain tension for so many books. Especially because I thought that the main couple did not really have all that much tension between them in this book already, although I did like both characters.
Alfred aka Alfie (this is mostly how he is called throughout the book) came into nobility in an interesting way. I should say that the circumstances of his past is the only thing that I found it hard to swallow in a historical romance/mystery. Note that I am not questioning the *possibility* of such thing happening. All kind of weird stuff happened through the history and maybe a similar story did occur, BUT I am questioning the believability of it.
To make a long story short, it jerked me out of the story a little bit. As I said, I really liked adult Alfie and I thought he tried to make the most of what he was given and grew to be pretty decent person, but his past and the initial change in his circumstances is just not something I believed in and it actually is quite important for the story, so it is mentioned multiple times and I just did not buy it.
The historical setting overall actually gave me quite a decent sense of time and place. The author mentions some research she did at the end of the book, but even without reading her note, one can feel that the setting was written with authority. I will always feel that I lack authority to judge how well the language suited the time period, but overall I did feel that I got transported to a different time so kudos to author for that.
I thought that the mystery itself was really good. I thought the author did well in making not one but two characters fake suspects in Alfie’s shooting. Okay maybe the first one I stopped suspecting early enough, it was too obvious, but I thought that the second one was a very real possibility almost till the very end. I cannot say that the real murderer completely avoided my suspicion, there was one clue that definitely made me stop and ask myself, oh, can it be that this person actually did it, but I could not come up with any motivation so I just moved. It was well done, I thought.
As I mentioned previously I did not find that the main guys had all that much chemistry. I think partially it is because we did not see much building of the relationship. I mean they investigated the mystery, that was good and gave them a chance to get to know each other better, but it felt like mostly they reconnected because they were such good friends during their rough childhood. It felt as if they fell in love as soon as they reconnected and it did not quite work for me.
I did like it enough to buy a second book.