I will be honest when I reveal that I have had this in my library since it first came out last year. *gasp* I know....I know. When I bought it last year, I had many other books on my plate at the time, and I just totally kept forgetting to actually get my booty in gear and read this. Also ever since seeing Daniel from the first books in the series, I had high high expectations from this one, and was hoping I wouldn't get disappointed. Now when I first started reading this book, my mood was not getting better, it took a while for the story to get fully set up, so it is sad to say that was it fully what I wanted and expected from wicked scandalous Daniel Mackenzie? Not fully, no. *but wait* Don't go yet...I am just getting started on the review. So keep your pants, or skirt on, because it only gets better.
I will say that as I kept reading, the more involved I slowly started to get into the story, and the better is seemed to get. I think due to the circumstances surrounding the heroine of the story, it takes a while for the story to really get in gear and fly away...but fly it does---both literally and figuratively :). I will try to contain my excitement on some entertaining scenes and keep this spoil free (if that is possible...just a warning to you all who have yet to read this delight!!).
I first want to discuss the characters of the story The hero: Daniel Mackenzie, son of Cameron Mackenzie. Now despite Daniel seeming on the surface to be a rake and scoundrel--which he is definitely all of that, he definitely is pretty complex. He has different qualities from his father and uncles. The one quality that overrides the other is my favorite--Ian Mackenzie. Ian is very different from the rest of the family, very unique and focused on certain things, and the way he is with Beth and his kids is just tender and charming. But he is a scientist and can spend hours and hours on a subject without realizing the passing of time. Daniel is very much like Ian in that way, he loves machines and is a scientist in his own right. And it is very evident in this story and we begin to see a whole different side to Daniel that I adored seeing. Now for the heroine: Violet Bastien, she is very original and unique to the series. She definitely has many qualities that you just never see coming in a a character from Ashley, flawed but also fun and strong and fiercely independent. Violet suffered a trauma early in her life, and has had to live with her mother on the run, posing as spiritual mediums. In Violets mind, its a matter of survival, even knowing they are lying to people for money. Violet is so courageous, I really liked her character, and a fighter and spirited--you have no problem relating with her at times. I love that she isn't this gorgeous all perfect heroine that could do no wrong. One of the things I adored about her character, was how human she seemed to be.
The story itself, is pretty ongoing, and keep you guessing. In the beginning of the story, Daniel saves Violet from a man that is set out to destroy her. But after sharing a passionate embrace, she clobbers him on the head, he wakes up to find her gone. When he fins her again, in Marseilles, he sets out to charm and seduce her. Daniel can't get this mysterious woman out of his mind. He is fascinated and we see how dedicated he is to her from the beginning. He doesn't seem to care that much about her "career" or that she keeps trying to run from him. But Daniel is very persistent, and slowly shows her passion and we begin to see a more deeper side to their relationship as the story continues. Daniel and Violet, do know how to have fun together, and the family readily accept Violet and seeing all these characters again just made me want to read the series again.
Overall I found this installment to be exciting, full of adventures, set in beautiful France, with plenty of heated scenes to fog up the windows this winter, a story that is packed full of romance, endearing characters, and quite a whopper of a story!! A GEM!!