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Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2016-12-19
- Reviewer: Staff
Byrnes fourth Victorian Rebels novel (after The Highlander), set in late 19th-century England, overflows with passion and mystery as one woman tries to keep her past hidden. Imogen Pritchard works as a nurse by day and a barmaid at night. Despite her protestations, the owner of the bar prostitutes her to the Duke of Trenwyth, Collin Talmage, for a large sum. When the battle-scarred duke is her patient a year later, he fails to recognize her; when Imogen marries an elderly peer and he leaves her a wealthy widow, the duke (who is now her neighbor) only sees the deplorable stream of poor and needy people she invites into her home. But when he learns that someone has threatened Imogen, Collin feels obligated to protect her. He is surprised by his increasing interest in her given his initial dislike. As his attraction and admiration grow, Imogen tries to keep him at arms length, even though she has never forgotten the night they spent together and wishes there could be another. Byrnes complex characterizations make her characters believable and real in this page-turning novel full of historical details and sensuous romance. Agent: Christine Witthohn, Book Cents. (Feb.)