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review 2019-01-20 02:29
Thief of Shadows
Thief of Shadows - Elizabeth Hoyt

After reading Scandalous Desires, I really was looking forward to this one (and like S.D., the epilogue sets up book 5). I wasn't disappointed. Winter was everything anyone could want in one of the main characters. Isabel was a good character too, even if I took a little longer to warm up to her.
But back to Winter. He is an unconventional character in a historical romance. He's not of the nobility. He's the son of a beer brewer who runs an orphanage. He is poor. He is younger than Isabel. He is a virgin. I can't think of anything I didn't absolutely adore! Bottom line: he and Isabel are perfect together.
I enjoyed the secondary characters. I would have liked a bit more on the mystery of the "lassie snatchers," like was Roger in on it? And who murdered him? Maybe book 5 will tell that story?
Character guide and spoilers:

Isabel Beckinhall was married to a much older man when she was very young, he died leaving his mistress and son (Christoper) without. Isabel takes in Christoper. It turns out she's had many miscarriages and has been told she is barren.
Winter: single, runs the foundling home, teaches, virgin, ghost of St Giles (one of them).
Both Temperance (#1) and Hero (#2) find out they are pregnant.
Margaret (Griffin's sister) was in love with and pregnant by Roger Fraser-Burnsby. He's murdered in this book. Presumably by Ghost of St Giles. RF-B was friends with Viscount Adam d'Argue (might be an interesting character), Earl Kershaw, and Mr Seymour (killed by Winter in self-defense, was also responsible for abuse and enslavement of the poor girls).
St John is Lazarus's (Lord Caire of book 1) friend mourning death of wife, Clara. His book is next. He also happens to be the Ghost of St Giles. One of them.

(spoiler show)
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review 2019-01-05 16:41
Scandalous Desires
Scandalous Desires - Elizabeth Hoyt

I was so looking forward to the book. I was wondering how such an unlikable character would change and become someone I could like. The Mickey at the beginning was an asshole and the Micheal at the end was in love & a different person. I thought the insight into his childhood explained much of the person he became. Silence was the perfect fit for him; she complimented him and he her. I really enjoyed his growth in regards to his daughter.
And Silence saves herself after being kidnapped.
I got glimpses into the Home to and the patronesses. This ended in a cliffhanger with the Ghost of St Giles revealed (I was right BTW!). I hope book 4 picks up right where this left off. Just enough was given, that I think Isabel has depth and will be a good match!

Character guide- will have spoilers

Mickey O'Connor AKA Micheal Rivers- other thief and has 2nd identity at Mr Rivers, shipbuilder.
Silence- the youngest of the Makepeace children, the formerly Mrs Hollingbrook
Harry- one of Mickey's men and most loyal
Bert- see above
Charlie Grady- The Vicar of Whitechapel; distiller of gin (and caused major issues with Griffin in book 2) and Mickey's rotten father. Found out Micheal's mother only recently died. Kidnapped Silence and was killed (stabbed) by Silence.
Patronesses of the Home: Hero (book 2), Amelia (Caire's mother), Margaret (Griffin's sister), Phoebe (Hero's sister), Isabel Beckinhall (married a much older man when she was very young, now widowed), Lady Penelope (she doesn't deserve a book based on what was on the page here- shallow), and Artemis Greaves (I'm curious). 

(spoiler show)
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review 2018-12-29 15:22
Notorious Pleasures
Notorious Pleasures - Elizabeth Hoyt

Lady Hero was introduced in book 1. She was an interesting character. Maybe a little judgmental, but kind. Griffin, the younger brother, but also the financial manager of his brother's funds. Hero is engaged to Griffin's older brother Thomas (the Marquis of Mandeville). 
Hero and Griffin's first meeting was...interesting....and I have to admit if it had happened after they had already met, I might not have kept reading and thrown the book across the room. But it did work, this being their introduction, and then finding out the identities. Hero is very proper and was engaged to a very proper man. I didn't like Thomas when first met on the page and he never became someone of character IMO. 

His treatment of Lavinia for one. Secondly he fucking hit Hero! 

(spoiler show)

Hero's brother, Maximus, was one I didn't have an opinion on, but after his actions regarding Thomas- after he knew what he did to Hero; I decided I didn't like him.
Griffin's character was interesting. It made for an interesting dynamic with how he made his family's fortune and his brother's actions against that "industry." The epidemic of cheap gin was an issue. His was a character maybe I shouldn't have liked, but I did. 
Hero and Griffin really worked for me. I really liked this book and found it hard to put down. I also got to read more about Silence (and she's next!), Winter, and the Home. 
I wonder if the Ladies Syndicate for the Benefit of the Home for Unfortunate Infants and Foundling Children will be a "player" in future books? Margaret might become a donor.
Character guide- will have spoilers

WI #1: 
Temperance and Lazarus's story. Temperance has 2 sisters, 3 brothers. Oldest is Verity, Concord (runs the brewery), Asa (no one knows what he does), Winter (runs the foundling home, teaches, possibly in the "Ghost of St Giles"), Silence (married to William- his ship is lost at sea in book 2. He had his cargo stolen (all of it) in book 1. Silence, thinking to help, going to Charming Mickey (the person who stole the goods) to get them back. It works, but Silence had to spend the night with him. Nothing happened, but she had to make it look like it did. No one, not her family, believes her that nothing happened).
St John is Lazarus's friend, his wife (I assume), Clara is sick
NP #2:
Griffin (Lord Reading) and Lady Hero Batten's story.
Hero's family: Brother Maximus Batten- Duke of Wakefield (active in parliament and HATES gin)
Phoebe- 17 and is slowly going blind. Was told she wouldn't be having a Season. Please say she gets a story! Parents were murdered in St Giles.
Griffin's: Thomas, Marquis of Mandeville in love with an older, un-titled woman (Lavinia) and is an asshole about it. Sisters Caro (married) and Margaret. Mother (I don't remember if she was given a Name or not- but she is loving and supportive).

(spoiler show)
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review 2018-12-26 15:38
Not the Duke's Darling - Elizabeth Hoyt

Elizabeth Hoyt's stories are always so enjoyable and filled with strong female leads who aren’t afraid to be independent and go for what they want, even when what they think they want blinds them to their heart's true desires. This story centers around two families that were torn apart by tragedy and 15 years later two members of those families find themselves at a house party together. Christopher doesn’t remember who Freya is and she is quite put out about the fact he doesn’t remember her, even though 15 years ago she was just a 12 year old girl, and he was her grown brother’s best friend. She looks the part of a demure and polite companion, but when she spits vitriol at him every time they talk he can’t help but be drawn in to this curiosity of a woman. When she challenges him to a duel, he gets far more than he planned and from that moment on it is one steam filled moment after another while she tries and solves the mystery of where a neighbor's wife is being held captive. I enjoyed the story. I always enjoyed Hoyt’s take on Regency romance and this one doesn’t disappoint at all. Fun. Entertaining. Lively. Passionate. And full of adventure. I look forward to more.

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review 2018-12-25 00:00
Untitled - Elizabeth Hoyt Please see all of my reviews on my blog at https://www.robinlovesreading.com.

My Rating: 3.5 Stars

Freya de Moray is a warrior woman. She has had a tragic past, and is living under an assumed name. Freya is part of a secret order of Wise Women and also serves as a chaperone for employment. She is also driven by vengeance for her brother, plotting to one day avenge the downfall her family suffered. To her great surprise, she spots the Duke of Harlowe while at a house party. Let the plotting begin.

Christopher Renshaw, the Duke of Harlowe, has some plotting of his own in mind. He is being blackmailed and he is finally planning to put an end to it. But then Harlowe’s plans are derailed when he spots Freya at the party. Freya could be Harlowe’s very undoing, in more ways than one.

Although the premise was quite interesting, especially since Harlowe’s and Freya’s paths had crossed once before, the challenges they faced in this story were a bit distracting. The history of the Wise Women, Freya’s reasons for wanting revenge against Harlowe, and her methods prevented me from being as engaged in this story as I would have liked. Also, the whole Wise Women aspect, and the related practices, when relayed, were a bit off-putting to me.

That said, there was plenty of action as well as twists and turns to keep me riveted enough to want to see whatever resolution the various circumstances could lead to. Another interesting factor was that Freya and Harlowe had to fight intense feelings for one another, especially when they had impossible situations facing them. The conclusion was satisfying, and I do look forward to the next book in this series.

Not the Duke’s Darling is the first book in the Greycourt series. The next book is When a Rogue Meets His Match, scheduled for release July 30, 2019.

Many thanks to Forever for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.
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