Thursday, April 18, 2013

Spotlight Review:

AND THEN SHE FELL – Stephanie Laurens
The Cynster Sisters Duo , Book 1
Avon
ISBN-13: 978-0-06-206864-4
April 2013
Historical Romance

London, England – 1837

Among the gentlemen of the haut ton , Henrietta Cynster is known as “The Matchbreaker”. When young women are about to become engaged to a man, they ask Henrietta to use her society connections to find out about him. Right now marrying for love is in fashion, and the society misses want to know the real reason a man is offering for her. Unfortunately, many engagements have been averted because of Henrietta's findings, and now her latest request has been from Melinda Wentworth about her almost engagement to James Glossup. James is a friend of Henrietta's brother Simon and the entire Cynster family, but his aunt's will has entailed her estate, and he must get married by the next month or he will lose her fortune. When Henrietta leaves the Wentworth house she bumps into a man who will cause a lot of trouble for the whole family. After Melinda breaks off with James, he confronts Henrietta and tells her about his aunt's will, and the families on the estates who will lose their jobs if he isn't given the money to run the properties. Henrietta decides she will help him find a woman from the ton who will suit him and he can marry quickly. But Henrietta and the women in the Cynster family have something special—an amethyst and crystal necklace given to the Cynster women by a Scottish deity called The Lady. Wearing this necklace will show the woman who her true hero is. The necklace has been handed down by the Cynster women, but it has been set aside by Henrietta for years; at twenty-nine she doesn't feel she will ever marry. But her sister Mary is anxious to meet her hero, and unless Henrietta finds hers, it cannot be handed down to her, so she encourages Henrietta to start wearing the necklace. Mary has absolute faith in the necklace, while Henrietta is very cautious about its claims, but goes along with Mary's pleading to start wearing the necklace. Henrietta can't understand why the necklace seems to feel warmer every time she's around James, and gradually she is thinking that she is the perfect woman for him.

James Glossup knows his future is down the drain when he sees Henrietta Cynster leaving the party with Melinda Wentworth; he knows what Henrietta does. Sure enough, Melinda is suddenly not interested in him, but he has only a month for an engagement and wedding to take place before tenants under his protection lose everything. James is happy Henrietta agrees to help him find a nice young woman, but gradually he prefers Henrietta herself to the women she introduces to him. But when Henrietta is pushed off a bridge while watching fireworks, and meets falling ruins and a wild horse, it soon convinces them someone is out to kill her and make it seem like an accident. Then their relationship goes from friends to something more, along with trying to keep Henrietta alive.

Stephanie Laurens is continuing the story of the vastly wealthy and influential Cynster family, and Henrietta's quest to find a wife for James. Told from each of their points of view, James and Henrietta seem to mesh quickly and easily. But when trouble arises and attempts on Henrietta's life, or “accidents” occur, they soon learn how steadfast the other is in keeping her safe.

In a Cynster novel, the entire family are secondary characters, from Devil Cynster, the leader of the family, to Mary, the youngest Cynster woman waiting for her chance to meet her hero. There's Simon, Henrietta's elder brother, all her sisters and their husbands, and the mysterious man determined to keep Henrietta silent by an accident.

AND THEN SHE FELL continues the legend of the necklace of The Lady, and how once again it helps a Cynster woman to find her hero. There will be much trouble and attempted murder of Henrietta that lets James and her appreciate their link, and the promise of a loving and happy life together. You will enjoy Henrietta's road to love, and eagerly anticipate Mary's story to come. THE TAMING OF RYDER CAVANAUGH will be the next in The Cynster Sisters Duo , and Mary is anxiously awaiting her chance at love.

Carolyn Crisher

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