Color of Deception by Ruth J Hartman

Color of Deception by Ruth J Hartman
Publisher: esKape Press
Genre: Historical, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (172 pages)
Heat Level: Sweet
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Orchid

When artist Kitty Sullyard draws a strange symbol in her toy panorama, she doesn’t expect it to be life threatening. Tossed into a situation she never asked for, she learns the hard way who not to trust.

After Kitty mysteriously disappears, Nathaniel Bexley has only a single clue with which to find her. It’s something only he would know. Will he be able to decipher the secret message she’s hidden in a drawing, or will Kitty be doomed to the hands of her kidnappers?

The Sullyard sisters are talented artists. The eldest, Kitty, is commissioned to paint a panorama for a sporting magazine but the owner’s son and his nephew are her real interest. Stratford Bexley, the son, is a rake who fascinates Kitty. Nathaniel, the nephew, also appears to be a rake but there is something about him that draws on Kitty’s deeper feelings.

In regency times society requires a chaperone for young ladies at all times. The Sullyard’s great aunt fits the position, but only in body. In reality the elderly lady goes off into a corner to either read or sleep, giving Kitty plenty of leeway to dally with the Bexley men.

This book is really entertaining. It provides the propriety of the time with a little bit of spice and danger in the mix. Kitty often finds herself in awkward circumstances when she hasn’t thought things through properly, or in some cases thought too much about the need to earn money and not upset Stratford’s father.

When the seamier side of the age interrupts her dalliance with the Bexley men, it is up to her sisters to save her.

This is the beginning of an entrancing series and I really enjoyed the twisting of Kitty’s feelings from one man to the other.

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