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The Hawk and the Dove - Virginia Henley Review is a tad spoilerish"Sabre, promise me you won't do anything foolish while I'm gone."The girl:Sara Bishop is the eldest and least favorite daughter (mum's on the third marriage, this time to a minister of some sort). With no dowry, her marriage prospects are pretty grim (although her brothers in law are pretty hot to get in her drawers). The only thing she's got to her name is a worthless strip of land in Ireland her father left to her.The guy: Captain Shane Hawkhurst (nicknamed The Sea God) is a favorite of an aging Queen Elizabeth - hell, he's the favorite of all the court ladies and then some. Shane is in thick with some Irish plotting and treachery, and he desperately needs access to this worthless strip of land in Ireland, and the only way he can get it is to marry the wench who owns it. But, since he doesn't want a wife, he marries Sarah via proxy (his brother stands in) and ships her off to his country estate never to be seen again.Well, our independent minded miss is having none of that, she changes her name to Sabre Wilde with the plan to become her husband's mistress, make him fall madly in love with her and then break his heart -bwahahahahaha- revenge on the bastard! She finagles her brother-in-law Mathew to take her to London where she'll assist her aunt who is mistress of the robes (or something like that) for Queen Liz and she's ready to meet up with Shane and get her hooks in him.Of course, Shane is madly in lust at first sight, he sets her up openly in his London house as his mistress (no gossiping servants here), and she comes and goes at will and for days on end and nary an eyebrow is raised. He gifts her with jewels, an expensive horse and even a barge as grand as the queen's, and nary an eyebrow is raised. There's lots of treachery and derring-do as they fight the baddies and Sarah/Sabre isn't one of those heroines to stay put like she's supposed to, so there's heroine in peril stuff. They have lots of laugh out loud cheesy sex, but IMHO there's just no chemistry there, nor is Sable particularly likeable. This is definitely an old school bodice ripper and very light on the historical setting, but the story and characters didn't work well enough for me to find it one I'd recommend. Favorite quotes:"[Essex speaking]"She's far too beautiful to escape Bess' s eagle eye. She'd standout in any crowd. Her toys alone are enough to earn Bess's venom.""Sweetheart, your lips mouth was made for kisses, not blackberries and cream...Your body holds sweeter fruit I long to devour...Your breasts are like melons, ripe for the tasting, with hard little fruits at their tip.""Her fingers dug into his shoulders, then entwined in his dark mane of hair, holding him to the center of her volcanic pleasure that felt as if it were going to erupt with molten fire.""He rummaged in an oaken sea chest and took out a small, heavy whip. Without taking his eyes from her face he slapped the weapon into the palm of his other hand and repeated the threatening motion half a dozen times."Oh, that reminds me. Spanking warning. I know that can be a deal-breaker with some readers.