Thursday, April 22, 2010

Meredith Duran "Written On Your Skin"

This book is overdue at the library and I'm a rule follower so I'm going to stay up late and write the review so I can send it on to the next lucky person on the hold list.

Phineas Granville is an English spy pretending to be an American businessman to bring down a gun smuggling ring in Hong Kong. Mina is the collateral damage, the step daughter of the ring leader. Her step father is abusive and is about to marry her off to someone that makes her skin crawl so she is looking for a way out. She throws herself at Phin and he's astounded by her idiocy but the tables turn when he's poisoned and she's in a position to save his life.

Four or five years later, she has extracted herself and her mother from her stepfather's ruin, and built an amazingly successful cosmetics business in New York. She travels to London with her mother, where her mother is kidnapped by her stepfather who had escaped from prison some time in between.

She turns to Phin for help but he wasn't much of a willing spy, and he has no intention of being dragged back through the mud again.

Nitpick #1: Nice gratitude! Until he decides that she is not an idiot, and she's telling the truth and she's actually really quite frickin' amazing, he doesn't feel very guilty about not wanting to get involved even if she did save his life.

I really, really, liked this book, but I do think overall I liked the heroine better than I liked the hero. And it's nice that the book is good enough in other respects that I get to think about the characters as if they were real people and nitpick their decisions, not because they don't make any sense whatsoever, but because they reveal selfish character flaws that I'm not excited about. In other words, this is a terrific book and if you want to know my other nit-picky issues you have to read it and then we can talk. :)

Historical Romance 2009: 5 of 5 intemperate misses.


Anonymous said...

Nice review - you capture the essence of the book in so few words. If only the NYT review of books were as concise! Thanks for sharing.

Heloise said...

Thanks for the compliment. Concise is one of my biggest goals here, if I can't always spell correctly (even with spell check) I can at least keep the damage to a minimum. :)

Kate said...

I really can't wait to read this (and can't believe I haven't already - Meredith Duran is an auto-buy for me, but her books are really hard to find over here.) I think the first chapter or an excerpt was in Bound by Your Touch, and I remember thinking both Phin and Mina were relatively despicable, but then Duran really excels at writing scoundrels who turn out all right.