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Gaelen Foley is an American who lives in Pittsburgh with her husband and dog and is a New York Times bestseller. She writes in the Regency England period although not all of her books are set in England. Her first book, The Pirate Prince (part of the Ascension Trilogy), was released in 1998.
Lord of fire was released in 2002 and is the second book in the Knight Miscellany. The series revolves around the seven siblings of the Knight family.
Alice Montague has a problem with her sister in law, Caro. She constantly leaves Alice with her nephew, Harry, while she goes off gallivanting around and generally doing as she pleases, giving Alice no life at all. When Harry gets sick, Alice calls for Caro to come home and help look after him, insisting that all he really wants is his mother. Caro has other ideas though as she wants to go spend the weekend with Lucien Knight in his home at Revell Court. When Caro refuses to go home, Alice takes it upon herself to go and get her.
Lucien is famous for the parties that he holds at Revell Court but they are strictly by invitation only, mainly because they are massive orgies. What everyone that attends the parties doesn't know is that Lucien is Secret Service and he has an ulterior motive. His plan is going exactly how he wants it to until Alice sneaks in his house. Although he is not sure about Alice to begin with, she manages to convince him that she is Caro's sister in law. Instantly feeling something for Alice, Lucien offers her a deal: he will let Caro leave to look after her son so long as Alice stays in her place. Being very sensible and quiet, Alice is unsure about his deal but reluctantly accepts. She doesn't trust Lucien at all and knows he is hiding something. She wants something from him: the truth. Will Lucien be prepared to tell her everything and compromise his mission or will his work be more important than the love of his life?
I didn't read these books in the order that they were released or in the way that they run through the series and it doesn't really matter if you don't. Each book concentrates on one particular family member with some of the others popping up now and again. Lord of Fire is one of my two favourites from this series by Foley and she is one of my three favourite authors. There has been nothing by her so far that I haven't enjoyed.
The thing that sets this book apart from the rest in the series is the fact that it is much more sensual and sexy but not in a gross porn kind of way. Yes, there are sex scenes but most of the book in this genre have that in common. The way that these parts were written were incredibly done. It could have been written in a really seedy way but the way that Lucien and Alice explore their feelings for each other was beautifully done. The chemistry between the pair was hot but sweet at the same time.
Lucien seems like a really hard character to get along with to begin due to his nature of work and the reasons why he keeps Alice there in the first place. He in entirely selfish and doesn't want to do anything that wont benefit himself in some way but he softens up throughout the story and became a lot more likable. For me, he was the ultimate hero even with these aspects. Lucien is dark, handsome, dangerous and mysterious but you are also able to see the softer side to him when he meets Alice. He is a real man, full of testosterone and I couldn't have asked for anything more in a main male character. Unlike most heros in these books, Lucien never really tries to seduce Alice and he refuses to force her into anything she doesn't want. He knows there is something special between them and wants it to happen on its own or for her to go to him.
Alice is very sweet and naive. As soon as she gets to Revell Court she realises that she might be out of her depth when all she sees is an orgy going on. To be honest, if that was me at the time, I would probably run a mile no matter what my reasons were for being there in the first place. Alice is determined to get Caro back to her son though and after a little persuasion, she is prepared to do whatever it takes, even if that means spending time with Lucien who seems to scare the life out of her. I really enjoyed discovering Alice's growth throughout the story when it came to the romance part but I also saw how strong she grew as well. When things weren't going her way with Lucien, she was strong and demanding and wouldn't back down when it came to something she believed was right.
The story is very fast paced and there is always something exciting happening. Just when you think things cant get anymore interesting, there is a twist thrown in near the end and Lucien and Alice have some hard decisions to make. One of the things that I loved about this book was how descriptive it is. Foley has a way of taking every little detail about Lucien's house and making it sound dark and secretive underneath but then quite sensual in other areas. Even though the part about the parties wasn't quite to my taste, the descriptions of the people and the setting were incredible.
This story has everything that I would want to read in a historical romance: passion, love, excitement and drama. The main characters are very interesting to learn about and I loved following them on their journey. Amazing book. If you like this genre, this one is a must, especially if you haven't read any of Foley's other books.
Knight Miscellany books
1. The Duke
2. Lord of Fire
3. Lord of Ice
4. Lady of Desire
5. Devil Takes a Bride
6. One Night of Sin
7. His Wicked Kiss
After years of preparation, he has baited his trap well, luring the depraved members of Society into his devil's playground so he can earn their trust and uncover their secrets. Yet no one in London suspects that Lord Lucien Knight is England's most cunning spy, an officer who has sacrificed his soul for his country. Now an unexpected intruder has invaded his fortress of sin, jeopardizing his carefully laid plans - and igniting his deepest desires. Beautiful, innocent Alice Montague finds herself at the mercy of scandalous Lord Lucien. But as he begins his slow seduction to corrupt her virtue, Alice glimpses a man tormented by his own choices, a man who promises her nothing but his undeniable passion.