Friday, December 3, 2010

Reading Julie Ann Long’s I Kissed An Earl was wickedly exciting in the extreme.  The fourth book in the Pennyroyal Green series is a delightful romp on the high seas when Violet Redmond stows away on The Earl of Armay’s ship as a cook’s mate
The Bay of Biscay is the setting for most of this book as Captain Flint; The Lord of Armay is commandeered by the king to bring in the notorious Le Chat (pronounced cat).The charge? Pirating in the dead of night, taking the rich cargo, and then sinking the transport to the depths of the sea.      
The king has had enough of the piracy and has asked Asher Flint for a small favor, a bribe really.  If he captures Le Chat and brings him to justice for his crimes, the king will bestow upon him (a man with land but no money) capital in which to feed his vast lands.  It is an offer that Flint cannot deny.  Indeed it seems too easy for the Captain, until he meets Violet Redmond at a ball the night before they are to sail away to find this elusive privateer.
Upon meeting Violet, Flint has recognized an uncanny resemblance between her younger brother Jonathon who is also at the ball and one Le Chat.  Upon realizing this, Violet concocts a plan to stow away on his ship to convince him to stop this crazy hunt for her oldest brother and family heir.  But it is of no use that Violet has bribed the cook’s mate with a few shillings and replaced him on the ship; it is of no use that with every swell of the aquatic Violet and Flint grow closer.  Indeed, the sexual tension fairly vibrates off the page, the romantic gestures; the sweet longing they feel toward one another is almost a living thing.
The love they feel toward one another cannot be expressed because they both know it will lead nowhere once their paths cross with Le Chat.  Either Flint will bring him to justice and Violet will hate him forever or she will find a way to sneak her brother away from the terrible grip of fate and Flint will never forgive her.  Either way they cannot be together.  Or can they?  Can they find a way to brave the high seas without losing each other or will they forever be at a crossroad and never find the connection?
Julie Ann Long has crafted yet another fine tale of fairy tale love with bumps and bruise along the way.  I loved each and every minute of reading Violet and Flint’s story and cannot wait for the next book in this Pennyroyal green series entitled What I Did for a Duke due out in February.  Five stars

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