I Adored a Lord by Katherine Ashe

I Adored a Lord by Katherine Ashe
Publisher: Avon Books
Genre: Historical, Mystery/Suspense
Length: Full Length (284 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

All that clever, passionate Ravenna Caulfield wants is to stay far away from high society’s mean girls.

All that handsome, heroic Lord Vitor Courtenay wants is to dash from dangerous adventure to adventure.

Now, snowbound in a castle with a bevy of the ton’s scheming maidens all competing for a prince’s hand in marriage, Ravenna’s worst nightmare has come true.

Now, playing babysitter to his spoiled prince of a half-brother and potential brides, Vitor is champing at the bit to be gone.

When a stolen kiss in a stable leads to a corpse in a suit of armor, a canine kidnapping, and any number of scandalous liaisons, Ravenna and Vitor find themselves wrapped in a mystery they’re perfectly paired to solve. But as for the mysteries of love and sex, Vitor’s not about to let Ravenna escape until he’s gotten what he desires . . .

Pure romance is in store for a reader when they pick up their own copy of I Adored a Lord. There is the primary story and then there is a sub-romance going on that reminded me very much of a fairy tale. Happy ever afters abound, even though a couple aren’t about romance but more like comeuppances and justice served. It’s a fun treat.

The book starts off reading like a fairy tale narrative, setting up the background of the heroine in preparation for what comes later. It’s an interesting touch. That being said, the author continued to plop narrative and telling throughout the book. I found the novel to be a bit wordy and reading speed was reduced. That doesn’t mean the plot, characters, environment or dialogue weren’t engaging – they were. I enjoyed the premise, the intrigue and the hunt for clues in addition to the dynamics between some of the secondary characters. There’s a lot to like about this novel.

The author was ebullient with her descriptions of the Romeo and Juliet play the prince wanted to stage. In fact, the details included in most chapters were overly thorough and time was spent painting scenes for a reader. Many readers will enjoy that kind of depth of detail; it bogged me down. I prefer action and dialogue and brisk plot movement and I’m glad to say that were it counted, Ms. Ashe came through. If the scene with a villain or a spiteful viper was onstage, the author tightened her writing to provide a solid impact. I appreciated that.

The romance between Vitor, the hero, and Ravenna, the heroine, is a slow sensual build. I liked how she initially rebuffed him. I enjoyed his pursuit of her, and for most of the book the heat level was sweet, until it was not. When their passion finally was fully explored, it wasn’t fully explored. There’s an interesting twist and a wonderful bit of drama that coincides with that event. It wasn’t until much later that they were able to get past all the bullets and evil plots and interruptions and finally be relaxed and be together the way they wanted to be. What harm can a little water do anyway?

Overall, this was a fun standalone novel. I liked the mystery of the who-done-it, the search for clues and how practical and pragmatic Ravenna was about it all, and Vitor’s appreciation for her brains and logic. This is an engaging historical romance with a touch of mystery that I do recommend to other romance readers. It’s worth checking out. Even the author’s note at the end was fascinating and provided a reason to believe in Vitor’s family dynamics. I quite enjoyed reading this tale and am looking forward to reading another in the series.

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