Wild man Barnaby Adair is in love. Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
The latest installment to Laurens's Cynster series (The Truth About Love; The Taste of Innocence) takes readers back to the 19th-century London of private investigator Barnaby Adair for a satisfying blend of mystery and romance. When attractive society belle Penelope Ashford enlists Barnaby's help in finding four kidnapped orphan boys, Barnaby is as intrigued by Penelope as he is by the case; her reputation as "something of a firebrand" and her dedication to her work at Foundling House far outstrip her desire to conform to society's wishes-a worldview not unlike Barnaby's. Penelope insists on accompanying Barnaby through every step of his investigation, and with some input from an old friend at Scotland Yard, the pair begins navigating the slums of London's East End in search of a "burglary school." As the orphans' fate begins to slide into focus, so, too, does Barnaby and Penelope's attraction for one another. That attraction, palpable from their first meeting, slowly builds to a gratifying crescendo without overpowering the story, which, though light on plot twists, clips along at a fast pace with enough charm to delight both fans and new readers. (Feb.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.