Escape With Me by Ruby Duvall

ESCAPE
Escape With Me by Ruby Duvall
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Historical, Paranormal, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (228 pgs)
Other: M/F
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Iris

Being shot is bad enough, but waking up in eighteenth-century London is even worse. Samantha must follow the clues in her magic locket to find out why she’s here and how to get home, and a tempting offer of shelter is too good to be true when she learns her patroness is actually a procuress. Even more startling than her overpowering attraction to her first client is the fact that submitting to her desires may lead to the answers she needs.

The beautiful redhead is a distraction that naval officer Ryder cannot afford. His father is dying and his fugitive brother has bankrupted the family business. But he cannot deny himself, and Samantha turns out to be just what he needed—both in bed and out—yet the more passion they share, the more embroiled she becomes in his dangerous dealings, including the dark secret between Ryder and the obsessed revenue officer who wants to see him hang.

Don’t we all wonder what would happen if we had mysteriously traveled back in time and were caught with no money and no protector and a limited working knowledge of the time period? (Well, okay, those of us who enjoy a good time-travel read have!) This one seems to be a bit more realistic at the start with our heroine, Samantha, having a turn or two of “bad luck”.

The interesting turn of events comes in the form of a locket found in her time. Well, her “correct” time. Not only does it seem to be the reason she traveled back in time, but it seems to be pointing her in a very specific direction.  Then her “bad luck” turns fortuitous in the meeting of Mary, one of the girls in the house. Being able to keep Mary with her allows Mary to help interpret the locket and its message. It also provides a buffer for Samantha’s reaction to Ryder.

And isn’t Ryder the reason we all have time travel fantasies? Handsome, hardworking, a bit of money – as well as some mystery, intrigue and a sordid past. Oh yeah, and hot for you. Well, in this case, hot for Samantha!

Even though the time period is not known for respect towards women, Ryder appears to have it. He also seems to show an appreciation for her intelligence and opinion – again, unusual for that time period. Not only does this spare the reader endless pages of put downs and “unpleasant” behavior towards Samantha, it is the vehicle to allow her attraction towards Ryder.

They share an intimate relationship during her stay in this time period and it is a vigorous and well-written intimate relationship.

However, having said all of the above, I need to note that there were many places where I had to stop and re-read. Whether it was confusing writing or my lack of knowledge of this particular time, I am not entirely sure. It may, in fact, be the combination of the two. But as it occurred multiple times, it bears mentioning.

Also worth mentioning is the twisting and turning plot. While creating an engaging scenario and allowing our heroine to move forward in her quest, the added plot twists proved confusing and also made me stop and re-read passages. The end result is positive, but the reader should be aware of this so it doesn’t “put them off”.

While most of the romantic scenes are between Samantha and Ryder, there is one particular encounter between Samantha and the Duke that isn’t a particularly pleasant meeting. While no actual intercourse is described, Samantha is very definitely cast in a subservient role, and is most forcefully against this liason. After that warning, I do want to state that it is definitely worth reading this scene, and the outcome continues to help move the story forward.

While not a traditional time travel novel, one does find the “happily ever after” they are looking for. There are plenty of twists and turns and many intimate moments. All-in-all, a worthy take on this interesting plot.

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