Monday, November 14, 2011

Review: Scandalous Desires

Scandalous Desires
Elizabeth Hoyt
Historical Romance/London/1738
Maiden Lane/Book 3
Grand Central/October 24, 2011

From the back cover ~

Can a pirate learn . . .

River Pirate ‘Charming’ Mickey O’Connor has lifted himself from the depths of the slums to be the King of St. Giles. Anything he wants he gets—with one exception. Silence Hollingbrook has been haunting his dreams ever since she spent a single night in his bed.

That the only true treasure . . .

Once Silence was willing to sacrifice anything to save the man she loved. Now a widow, she’s finally found peace when Charming Mickey comes storming back into her life with an offer she can’t refuse. But this time she won’t be the only one paying the price for his sins.

Lies in a woman's heart?

When his past comes back to torment him, Mickey must keep Silence safe from a merciless enemy, while wrestling with the delicious hold this widow has on his heart. And in the face of mounting danger, both will have to surrender to something even more terrifying . . . true love.

A pirate hero, a widowed heroine and a cute toddler to bring them back together. It's time to find out just how bad Charming Mickey can be and how hard and fast he will fall. Silence is a match for the notorious pirate king. She is able to temper her fascination with her common sense when it comes to the enigmatic pirate.

Silence Hollingbrook has a history with Charming Mickey O'Connor and it's not a nice one. She was able to get away from him but the association left its mark and she's not happy to be back in his presence. The one thing that could bring her back is the child Mary Darling. A child she has come to love and will do anything to keep her safe, even from her father. From the previous books we know Silence loved her husband but with him gone she has put her energy into the orphan home and Mary Darling. I enjoyed the scenes with Silence and Mary Darling because we see a nurturing and protective side of Silence as well as a happy side which was rarely seen previously. As Silence comes to care about Mickey, we see those qualities when she is with him.

Pirate Charming Mickey O'Connor is a woman's fantasy complete with sexy Irish brogue. But he is a dangerous man who has committed numerous crimes to become powerful and feared. So the obvious question is - is he redeemable? Can he be saved from his life of crime to live a life on the right side of the law? Or better yet - should he? I liked Charming Mickey but I wasn't sure I'd like him as a country gentleman with legitimate business dealings.

Silence's relationship with Mickey is perplexing in that she knows he's a criminal, he makes no secret of it, in fact he enjoys boasting of his activities. But even knowing that, Silence not only tries to understand this criminal but begins to make excuses for him and of course, she tries to change his ways. It's the reformed by a good woman trope in full force. I don't think it worked completely because Mickey really didn't want to give up his lifestyle. After everything we learned about him, I still had a hard time believing he would let go of not only his riches but his power. He wasn't left a pauper but his lifestyle would certainly take a dramatic change.

In the romance department, it was a tug-of-war with Mickey issuing orders and Silence disobeying. Mickey would then "punish" Silence but there was no real punishment and Silence finally came around. I was surprised that it took so long for them to get together considering they were living in the same place and Mickey wanted her in his bed. He's really not accustomed to being told no. Silence did manage to hold out for a while but once she fell, she fell hard and fast. That's when the redeeming truly began.

We see some familiar faces in the cast of secondary characters and a few new ones. The most notable new character looks to be slated for the position of the next heroine. I liked what we saw of her, she's no pushover, and hope she will be a good contrast to the hero.

With Scandalous Desires, Elizabeth Hoyt has added yet another lovely installment in the Maiden Lane series. I had thought the anticipation for Mickey and Silence's story could not be topped but with the way things were left, the next book should prove equally if not more anticipated.

Rating: A-

Books in this series ~

Wicked Intentions
Notorious Pleasures
Scandalous Desires
Thief of Shadows (Summer 2012)


  1. This book seems to be a winner with everyone ;) Glad you enjoyed it Les! But as I said to Hils, I know better now. Not caving :)

  2. LOL, Nath is not caving! *g*

    Great Review Leslie! I loved this book and absolutely agree with you about Mickey. I loved what Hoyt did with that character (actually I"m loving what she's doing with characterization in this series overall).

    Now we wait for Thief of Shadows! Boy, oh boy!! I read the excerpt for this book too... how yummy was that? I'm so excited. :D

  3. Nath ~ You know hope much I love Hoyt but yeah, you haven't had the best of luck so, totally understand not going for it.

    Hils ~ Ha - Nath has learned. Hoyt is not for her.

    Loved the excerpt. It really made me want the next book now!