Wicked Intentions and Notorious Pleasures) I need not say more as fans have been waiting for this story since our couples first life changing meeting in Wicked Intentions. Now there is always that lingering question...can a book with so much anticipation live up to the hope readers have been clamoring for? Oh, yes. Yes, yes, yes. Ms Hoyt knocked it out of the park with this one.
Mickey O'Connor, notorious river pirate, caused Silence Hollingbrook to question her love for her late husband after Mickey forced Silence to leave his palace in a state of disarray after she came to bargain back her late husbands goods from his ship that Mickey stole. After she returns home, untouched, her husband refuses to believe her and he later dies at sea leaving a huge sense of loss upon Silence. When a baby girl is left on her doorstep, she throws all her love into caring for little Mary Darling and when she awakens one day to find her gone she panics until she receives a note from Mickey stating that he has something she wants. All the little pieces click into place as to who Mary Darling truly is but this is her daughter now and she knows she will do everything in her power to get him back...even if it means going back to Mickey and sacrificing her fragile reputation again.
Mickey truthfully could care less about his little daughter...her mother was just a whore and of no importance but Mickey has many enemies and his number one enemy wants the little baby to hold over Mickey's head. And to get to Mary means the evil Vicar needs to go through Silence and that is just unthinkable to Mickey. No women has ever gotten under his skin like Silence has from there one meeting nine months ago and he knows he must protect her at all costs and the only way to get her to stay with him, is through Mary Darling.
The transformation of Mickey O'Connor, river pirate, into a man that cares more about life than just money and power is excellent. It didn't happen overnight, it was a gradual, very believable process. I loved Mickey. His demons from his past will break your heart and make you understand how and why he grew up into the man he did. I was a bit surprised at the little twist in the middle of the book..it threw me off for a bit but it was a perfect solution that played out in the end. And even with all the pirate jargon talk (I did have to read a bit of it out loud to make sure I was reading it right), I really fell for Mickey, pirate and all.
Silence. I really wasn't sure how she was going to be able to handle this strong, bossy, snarly man but she surprised me. Her 'mama bear' instincts kicked in and she stood her ground with Mickey and refused to bend to her rules. It lead to quite a few humorous situations with Mickey roaring at her and Silence just smiling and saying no, thank you. It sort of reminded me of Beauty and the Beast when Belle first arrives at the Beasts castle so of course that made me smile. But watching Silence fall in love with Mickey was delightful. She knows it just isn't right but she again surprised me when she followed her heart instead of doing what her family asked of her at one point but then standing her ground in the end.
Overall, definitely one of my favorite historicals I have read this year. It will grab you from the beginning and keep you flipping the pages all the way through the heart pounding ending. And the epilogue will have you clamoring for the next book, Thief of Shadows, right away again. Thank you Ms Hoyt for stepping up and delivering a absolutely wonderful story that will leave many smiling faces and sighing hearts in its wake and be enjoyed for years to come! 5 stars
Maiden Lane Series
Thief of Shadows Expected release July 2012
Lord of Darkness Expected release December 2012