Lady Claire has not had an easy life, and things are getting even more difficult. She marries a man who changes into a verbally abusive stranger; then she's kidnapped. Overhearing that the men plan to kill her, Claire escapes, only to be conked on the head and placed on a boat. Hugh Battencourt is waiting on the beach to intercept a female traitor who has a list of English spies working in France. His orders are to capture the spy, get the letters, then kill her. When he sees Claire on the beach, he believes that he has caught his woman, giving Claire the all but impossible task of convincing Hugh that she is a loyal English subject. In spite of Claire's mal de mer, Hugh finds her extremely attractive, and Claire also has a tendre for her captor. Filled with adventure and unforgettable characters, this Regency is a fine follow-up to Robard's Scandalous (2001). ((Reviewed September 15, 2002)) Copyright 2002 Booklist ReviewsReview by Publishers Weekly Reviews
Moving effortlessly from a merchant ship on the high seas to the glittering ballrooms of London, this exhilarating 19th-century romance is full of swashbuckling suspense and sexual sparks. Hugh Battancourt has all the makings of a true romantic hero he's chivalrous, strong, daring, mysterious and even considerate. He's also just made the biggest blunder of his espionage career: he has abducted 21-year-old Claire Banning Lynes, an unhappily married beauty, and accused her of spying for the French. Although his senses tell him he's got the wrong woman, it takes a lot of convincing and a little seduction on Claire's part to assure him of that truth. In the midst of sorting out Claire's identity and warding off a band of French merchants and soldiers, Hugh and Claire fall in love, but can a married lady and a world-weary spy find happiness together? Adultery is often frowned upon in romances, but Robards (To Trust a Stranger; Scandalous) addresses the topic without making either of her protagonists appear underhanded or unsympathetic. While the sexual chemistry between Hugh and Claire crackles and a handful of secondary characters including Hugh's crusty but caring henchman and Claire's bold little sister charm their way into readers' hearts, the plot winds a predictable path to a satisfying yet saccharine denouement. (One-day laydown Aug. 27) Forecast: Robards should receive frequent flyer miles for all the times her books have traveled up the bestseller lists. This book, the second in her Banning sisters trilogy, will undoubtedly journey to the top of the charts as well. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Distressed when her wealthy and aristocratic new husband turns out to be a dissolute wastrel, Claire Banning vows to make the best of her life, until a near-fatal accident and the dashing Hugh Battancourt change everything.Review by Publisher Summary 2
Distressed when her wealthy and aristocratic new husband turns out to be a dissolute wastrel, Claire Banning vows to make the best of her life, until a near-fatal accident transforms her life when she is rescued by Hugh Batlancourt, a handsome stranger and secret agent for the Crown. Original.Review by Publisher Summary 3
Claire Banning fulfilled every debutante's dream when she married a rich nobleman. Soon, however, the celebrated beauty realizes she wed a dissolute wastrel. Bitterly hurt and desperately lonely, Claire vows nonetheless to take her expected place in society. Then on a journey home to her husband's estate on the coast of Sussex, she is abducted, and her life -- and her heart -- are changed forever. Hugh Battancourt -- a dark and dangerous nobleman who long ago turned his back on the ton and now leads a life secretly dedicated to his country's service -- is determined not to be swayed by his prisoner's beauty as they share a cabin on a ship bound for France. Lives depend on his retrieving from her a letter full of secrets she intends to turn over to the enemy. But even as Claire and Hugh engage in a battle of wits and wills, captor and captive find themselves drawn irresistibly to each other. Is it possible, Claire wonders, that she could discover the true meaning of love that has eluded her with this handsome stranger? One who will lay his life on the line in order to protect her from someone who is intent on placing Claire in the path of danger? With this sensual and entrancing tale, bestselling author Karen Robards continues her wonderful trilogy of three sisters taking their rightful place as the belles of Regency England's ton.