Friday, October 15, 2010

The Year of Living Scandalously-Julia London

The Year of Living Scandalously
Julia London
Pocket, Oct 19, 2010, $7.99
ISBN: 9781439175453

In 1792 in Hadley Green, eight year old Lily Boudine’s testimony led to the hanging of a man for stealing the jewels of the Countess of Ashwood. To keep young Lily safe she is sent to live with family in Ireland. Over the next fifteen years, villagers debated whether the executed man was guilty of a tryst.

In 1808, Lily inherits Ashwood when her father dies. Instead of traveling to her estate, she heads to Italy while asking her cousin Keira Hannigan to visit her property. Keira readily agrees as this enables her to elude an unwanted suitor. At Ashwood, Keira poses as Lily until the Irish Earl of Donnelly arrives to see Lily. Lord Declan O’Connor knows his host is not the countess as they were in love back in Ireland. She persuades him not to expose her masquerade and help her uncover the truth about what happened over fifteen years ago. An unknown adversary wants to prevent the truth from surfacing even if that means burying the Irish interlopers.

This is a fabulous Regency investigative romance starring two Irish in England. The lead couple is a wonderful pairing as each understands fully the danger the Year of Living Scandalously will do to their respective hearts. However, it is the delightful inquiry into the mystery of what happened in 1792 that makes for a brisk entertaining historical romantic suspense.

Harriet Klausner

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