"Thief of Shadows"
By: Elizabeth HoytSynopsis from Goodreads:
My Thoughts:Winter Makepeace lives a double life. By day he's the stoic headmaster of a home for foundling children. But the night brings out a darker side of Winter. As the moon rises, so does the Ghost of St. Giles—protector, judge, fugitive. When the Ghost, beaten and wounded, is rescued by a beautiful aristocrat, Winter has no idea that his two worlds are about to collide.
Lady Isabel Beckinhall enjoys nothing more than a challenge. Yet when she's asked to tutor the Home's dour manager in the ways of society— flirtation, double-entendres, and scandalous liaisons—Isabel can't help wondering why his eyes seem so familiar—and his lips so tempting.During the day Isabel and Winter engage in a battle of wills. At night their passions are revealed . . . But when little girls start disappearing from St. Giles, Winter must avenge them. For that he might have to sacrifice everything—the Home, Isabel . . . and his life.
Easily one of my favorite authors writing today, if ever, Elizabeth Hoyt has a way of writing a romance that utterly sucks you in and makes you forget about real life. “Thief of Shadows” is Winter Makepeace's story, the headmaster of the orphan's home in St. Giles and boy, was it a doozy!
Winter and Isabel's romance has been coming for a while. We met Winter (the brother of Temperance and Silence Makepeace) in the very first book of the series, “Wicked Intentions.” Isabel we met a few books ago as well, as a matron of the foundling home. She would donate money and supplies for the children, while also helping to raise money for their new building. Whenever the Winter and Isabel would come into contact, there was destined to be fireworks.
So as the book starts, Isabel accidentally comes upon the Ghost of St. Giles, the mysterious rebel who is working to save St. Giles from the rum makers and thieves. No one knows who he is or why he does what he does, he is a true enigma. Little does she know, the Ghost is actually none other than Winter, the staid schoolteacher that she clashes with constantly.
I think the magic within this novel is the complete difference of attitudes and personalities the two main characters have. Isabel is a party goer, outgoing, is titled, has money and enjoys spending it. She has been married, widowed, and now knows what she wants in life. Winter is so quiet, reserved, and under the surface, a wild man. When the two finally decide that they should be together, it's explosive and utterly wonderful.
She raised her eyebrows and closed her book. “My locks aren't that old.”
“Yes, but” - he drew off the silk mask as well and let it drop to the hearthrug - “they're more ornamental than useful.”
She watched as he doffed his hat. “Does that explain how you got in?”
"Paritally.” He unbuckled his sword belt and carefully laid it on the tiles before the fireplace. “I would've gotten in anyway, no matter how good your locks, but I shouldn't have gotten in so easily.” He began unbuttoning his tunic.
“Perhaps I don't have anything worth locking away,” she said a bit distractedly.
He shot her a sparkling glance from underneath lowered brows. “You have yourself.” (Hoyt, 157)
She'd pushed him away from her again and again, but she never thought he'd go far. He'd always been in her life, always be in this world, living his own life, perhaps marrying, managing his home, happy, damn it.
Winter Makepeace wasn't supposed to die. Isabel simply couldn't conceive of it. He was too athletic, too young, too vital. He wasn't like other men. He challenged her. He saw all her faults – and they were myriad – and he said he loved her anyway. If she lived a thousand lifetimes, she'd never find another man like him, and she didn't want to. (Hoyt, 233)
“Thief of Shadows” is a charming, fun, intense romance. I read it within a few hours and was dying for more when I finished. I loved watching Winter go from the quiet, mysterious man he's been to a masked hero righting the wrongs. One of my favorite romances of the year, be sure to check out the rest of the series starting with “Wicked Intentions,” “Notorious Pleasures,” and “Scandalous Desires.”
I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review...then I ran out and bought my own copy! :)
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Date of Publication: June 26, 2012
# of Pages: 360