He vowed to never fall in love…tead, she grew up amongst grifters who used her unique “finding” ability for their own selfish purposes. Re
Meg Anthony was never raised a lady. Inscently, she’s been taken under the wing of the Duke of Camden and the Order of M.U.S.E., learning not only the fine art of becoming a lady, but how to use her extraordinary talent to help others,
But Meg’s gift is a beacon to unsavory characters who would possess her.
Charged with her protection, Lord Badewyn knows—too well—that his wild, Welsh castle is no safe haven for this lovely, all-too-desirable creature. Part human, part fallen angel, he is one of the Nephilim. He is a recluse sworn never to love. As the dangers to Meg grow more threatening, he cannot help but find himself tempted beyond all reason…and tested to see if he has both a heart and a soul.
Publisher and Release Date: Entangled Select Historical, November 2015
Time and Setting: England, 1814
Genre: Paranormal historical romance
Heat Level: 2
Reviewer Rating: 4 stars
Review by Maria Almaguer
This is the third book in Mia Marlowe’s paranormal historical series, The Order of the M.U.S.E. It has some themes similar to those found in the wildly popular young adult novel, Twilight, in which both hero and heroine do not feel they belong or even deserve love.
Lord Badewyn, Samuel Templeton, is the son of a human and a Fallen Angel. He truly believes he has no soul, much like vampire Edward Cullen; while Meg Anthony is a woman from the much lower classes who just wants to be accepted. With her special gift of “finding,” and her wholehearted acceptance into the Duke of Camden’s household, she feels as if she has finally found her home.
She needed her gift. It was all that made her special.
Meg is a minor character in the first two books in the series. In this one, she is on the run from her unsavory and unscrupulous relatives, uncle Rowney and cousin Oswald, whom her uncle wants her to marry. Before she escaped from them, Meg made her living on the rough streets of London’s poorest neighborhoods, using her gift as a “Finder” to locate lost objects and people. Her nimble fingers as a pickpocket also helped her survive, but Rowney and Oswald haven’t had much luck since she disappeared. And they are still looking for her.
Because of a recent break-in and Meg’s discovery that Rowney and Oswald are looking for her, the Duke of Camden has sent Meg to Faencaern Castle in Wales, the home of Lord Badewyn, for protection. Samuel is a “Watcher” who can spot approaching danger, but Samuel fears for Meg while she is in his safekeeping. He is attracted to her and therein lies major trouble.
The Order of the M.U.S.E. – Metaphysical Union of Sensory Extraordinaires – is a collection of people with unique gifts, collected by the illustrious Duke of Camden, whose special talents are ferreting out paranormal and treasonous plots against the Crown. Previous stories in the series feature an uncontrollable fire mage new to her gift and a viscount who hears voices and was once banished to Bedlam by cruel relatives. On her Goodreads page, Ms. Marlowe describes the series as “A psychic ‘Leverage’ type team meets Jane Austen in King George III’s Court…”
Also in the preceding books, there are some tantalizing glimpses into the Duke of Camden’s troubled personal history and it is resolved and revealed here.
Grigori, Samuel’s handsome but confused father, is a Fallen Angel, doomed to repeat a tragic “Grand Cycle,” but I cannot disclose more because it would spoil the story. Grigori has his own demons that he must overcome, despite fearing he never can. I really like how Ms. Marlowe reveals the inner compassion of this complex character.
“Wicked things are so much more interesting, don’t you think?”
This is a rather sweet romance. Both Meg and Samuel are virgins and the love scenes are remarkably tame compared to Ms. Marlowe’s usual repertoire, especially those in her sexy and playful Touch of Seduction series.
“I may be a virgin, but I’m a well-read virgin.”
Though this is a paranormal historical and Ms. Marlowe clearly takes some liberties, there is still close attention to the customs and etiquette as well as fashion of the Regency era. For example, she describes the complex process of cleaning an elaborate gown and how difficult and long it might take to clean thoroughly.
Ms. Marlowe’s pacing is energetic and fast, and this novel has plenty of plot twists, witty dialogue, colorful characters, and a romance between two lonely souls. If you enjoy Brooklyn Ann’s Regency vampire series, Scandals with Bite, this is a satisfying instalment in an engaging and original series.