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REVIEW

"Fabulous Historical Regency with Paranormal Undertones"

Ten years earlier, Eleanor "Nell" Anslowe, a beautiful wealthy heiress was once betrothed to a Duke's heir. That was before the 'accident' which left her lame and haunted by nightmares of hideous brutality -- always the same perpetrator who remained in shadows, but different victims. Firmly off the shelf at twenty-nine she agreed to accompany her father to London for the season where she is looked at as the answer to the nefarious Lord Tynedale's way out of debt. Rebuffing his advances, Tynedale later kidnapped her with the intention of rape and forcing her to wed, but due to a storm along the way, Nell escaped and found shelter in a nearby hut.

Fate stepped in when on that same stormy night, Julian, the Earl of Wyndham was racing to prevent his step-sister from eloping to Gretna Greene. Thrown by his horse he also found shelter in the same hut as Nell and when Nell's father and brother discovered them Julian -- who had vowed never to re-marry -- did the honorable thing and offered marriage. Their marriage would blossom into a sensual and powerful love that would last forever....or until they could discover the identity of Nell's 'shadow man' before he destroyed them both.

*** I was completely swept away from the very first pages of this tremendous Regency Romance mystery and read it in one sitting. The author combined all the elements I look for in a romance with two ideal lead characters truly meant for one another; after the requisite initial problems of conflict over their hasty marriage. Julian is kind, honorable, considerate, and in lust with Nell until he finally realizes he's fallen in love with his wife. While Nell's initial qualms over being married without love to a complete stranger are worked out in a reasonable amount of time, she has also fallen in love with her husband, but feels that his heart is bound to his deceased wife.

At first I was wondering why the author opened up the book with Nell's nightmares and then as the romance progressed the author simultaneously directed the intrigue towards the horror that Nell's nightmares were based in fact! As Nell's nightmares which Julian was trying to soothe away became more and more real, an event happened to make her realize that her initial nightmare of a man being killed was not a nightmare at all but a real event. At this point, Nell realized she was actually looking through the eyes of the madman. The author then built up the suspense with the introduction of legitimate and illegitimate cousins, uncles, and by-blows from Julian's rakish grandfather and uncle, giving the reader a wide range of possibilities as to what face belonged to the "shadow-man" from Nell's dreams, especially when the features of all the relations were so similar to one another. Thrilling with an edge-of --the seat climax, the author kept up the suspense right up to the spine chilling ending.

This was my very first book by the esteemed historical romance author Shirlee Busbee but it surely will not be the last. In short it was a fast and beautifully paced romance with a huge dollop of suspense and mystery that will keep the reader enthralled from beginning to end! What a treat!

Reviewed by Marilyn Rondeau
Posted August 11, 2007

SUMMARY

LOVE IS SWEETEST WHEN IT'S UNEXPECTED

Nell Anslowe and Julian, Earl of Wyndham, are an unlikely couple in every respect. Injured in a riding accident ten years ago, Nell was left with a fianc‚ who abandoned their engagement, a slight limp, terrifying nightmares, and the firm belief that she will never marry. The abrupt end of Julian's unhappy marriage formed his resolve to remain a bachelor until the end of his days. But as Julian chases down his reckless stepsister, he seeks shelter from a summer storm in a cottage—and finds it occupied by Nell, who has escaped from a fortune—seeking libertine bent on carrying her off to Gretna Green. Discovered together by Nell's family, the couple's hasty wedding is the only way to save Nell from scandal—but the polite union each of them expects blossoms into something much more powerful.

 

Scandal Becomes Her
by Shirlee Busbee

Zebra Books
June 1, 2007
ISBN #0821780247
EAN #9780821780244
384 pages
Paperback
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Other Books by
Shirlee Busbee

Coming Home
Return To Oak Valley
Swear by the Moon


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