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The White Dove
Rosie Thomas
Lakota Surrender
Karen Kay
Scarlet Angel - Elizabeth Thornton From the book description:As the granddaughter of a highly placed French diplomat Gabrielle de Brienne was a valuable political pawn. She was also the same Gabrielle who as a child had inadvertently taken from Cam Colburne, Duke of Dyson, the two people he loved best in the world. The handsome nobleman had vowed to make her pay for his suffering, and now the perfect opportunity presented itself. He would abduct this eighteen-year-old hoyden with the looks of an angel and the manners of a ragamuffin--and hold her prisoner in his Cornwall castle in order to manipulate her traitorous grandfather. For years he had dreamed of having her at his mercy, and now nothing less than her complete surrender would satisfy him...Ummm, not exactly. Yes, Cam lost his stepmother and younger sister in The Terror, and yes he's spent years hunting down the leaders of the tribunal that sentenced them to death, but Gabrielle was only a means to an end - kidnap her, hold her hostage to get her grandfather to spill military secrets. What you end up with here is a heroine raised as a boy (she can wield a sword like a man, and even sun-bathes in the nude), who is kidnapped and taken to the hero's fortress in Cornwall, announces to the world that she's his "ward", and put in the care of the duke's kept mistress (!!). K...Sorry, but this was a bit of a drag. I don't mind a wall-paperish romance when I'm in the mood for brain-candy, but this one has way too much politics and too many real-life characters that it's impossible to keep track of them all, even with notes and Google. I suspect only those really up to snuff on the Napoleonic era will be able to follow it all, but then those up to snuff will probably be rolling their eyes at times - some minor French political flunky addresses a duchess by her first name? Those nitpicks aside, there just isn't enough romance and/or sexual chemistry between Cam and Gabrielle to carry this story. Once they finally hit the sack halfway through the book, that's pretty much where they stay for the rest of it. Every argument ends up in bed. Every single one of them.If you're on a desert island and have nothing better to read, then go for it. Otherwise give it a pass. Extra star just 'cause I finished it.