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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Review and 24 HOUR GIVEAWAY: Viscount Breckenridge to the Rescue!

Viscount Breckenridge to the Rescue: A Cynster Novel (Cynster Bride)Title: Viscount Breckenridge to the Rescue
Author: Stephanie Laurens
Page Count: 448 pages
Publisher: Avon
Genre: historical romance
Copy for review provided by the publisher in anticipation of an honest review


You are cordially invited to the wedding of Miss Heather Cynster . . . but not before she encounters kidnappers, danger, and a daring rescue at the hands of Viscount Breckenridge.

Determined to hunt down her very own hero, one who will sweep her off her feet and into wedded bliss, and despairing of finding him in London’s staid ballrooms, Heather Cynster steps out of her safe world and boldly attends a racy soiree.

But her promising hunt is ruined by the supremely interfering Viscount Breckenridge, who whisks her out of scandal—and straight into danger, when a mysterious enemy seizes her, bundles her into a coach, and conveys her out of London.

Now it’s up to the notorious Breckenridge to prove himself the hero she’s been searching for all along . . .
This book was a first for me in several ways- my first historical romance in awhile, my first book by Stephanie Laurens, my first Cynster novel, etc. etc.  I'm happy to say that I don't plan on being a stranger to this series any longer though, as it was a fun, exciting, and sweet story from the beginning to the end.

The overall premise of the story is interesting- upon being discovered by Breckenridge at a soiree of dubious...reputation...Heather is bustled out before she can get into any trouble in her search for a husband that she loves and respects who will be worthy of her love and respect and sweep her off her feet.  Unfortunately for her, or fortunately depending on how you look at it, trouble finds her in the form of a mysterious carriage where she's grabbed off the street and bustled out of London.

This is no ordinary kidnapping, though, as Heather's accomodations are quite posh, all things considered.  It plays out like a grand adventure to her and to all parties involved, with everyone wanting to know the identity of the mysterious killer more than anything else.  The fact that Heather is sort of on the shelf, but not really, is enough to address issues of reputation and notoriety that might be a problem for her once this situation is all resolved.  Throughout the whole ordeal, Breckenridge is there to protect Heather and make sure she gets the answers and closure she needs; we as the readers know this is because he loves her beyond reason and good sense.  Heather coming to that realization is an integral part of the story development, however.

These two definitely have to grow together and fight for their eventual happiness, and not just from abductors and mysterious villains either.  They have to figure out who they are and what, precisely, scares them about being committed to another person, and they have to do it all before it's true late.  The ending chapters illustrate vividly that nobody every truly knows how much time they have left and that sometimes delaying and dithering can cost a person more than he or she could imagine.  There's no time like the present!

Having not read any of the other Cynster novels, of which there are (happily) apparently many, I wasn't familiar with any of the side characters or backstory that went into this installment, but through it all the themes of family and loyalty were very strong.  Both the hero and heroine (Breckenridge and Heather, respectively) value those things strongly, and the need to have them infused in every facet of life shines through throughout the story.  I enjoyed my first foray into this family's history and am looking forward to reading more.  Plus, what's up with the laird and his crazy mother?  Hopefully we'll find out more about that in future installments.

Overall Grade: B+
Thanks to the awesome people at Avon/HarperCollins, there is an awesome prize up for grabs TODAY ONLY!  One commenter on this post will win SIGNED PRINT COPIES of Stephanie Laurens's entire Avon backlist!  

Here are the rules of engagement:
-U.S. only please.
-This giveaway is open for 24 hours ONLY and closes at midnight tonight!  The winner will be announced tomorrow!
-To enter, leave a comment with a way to contact you.  No contact information = no entry.
-Don't forget, HarperCollins is also giving away a $100 Amazon gift card to one commenter on the entire tour! 

Those are the facts- enter away and good luck to everyone!  If you can't get enough of the giveaway excitement, check out my currently open giveaways- win 
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