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A Criminal Affair

by Wendy Burdess

      Lady Charlotte Hamilton is dreading marrying ghastly Lord Frederick Farrell, but has no option.  Her father’s unwise investments have brought the formerly well-off family to the brink of bankruptcy, and becoming a Farrell will mean her father, brother and sister can continue in the style to which they are accustomed.  But somebody else does not want her to marry Frederick, and all sorts of accidents keep happening to keep them apart.  As if this is not mysterious enough, why on earth does he want to marry her in the first place, as he is clearly dreading the wedding as well?

This is a rather delightful story, with plenty of humor in it.  Everybody seems to be either very pleasant or utterly dreadful, and there are plenty of comical episodes with that family from hell, the Farrells.  The whole book has a good-humored feel to it, from Charlotte’s charitable exploits to her brother’s "scientific" accidents and it is hard not to be carried along on a wave of bonhomie.  I enjoyed the elements of mystery too, which made a change from either a straight love story or murders and spies.  My one mild grumble is I had no idea when the story was set; the fashions point to the late 18th century but no other clue is given.  This aside, I enjoyed this lighthearted tale.

The Book

Robert Hale
31 December 2008
0709087241 / 9780709087243
Historical Romance / Late 18th century / Somewhere near London
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The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2009
© 2009