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Review: An Affair with Mr.Kennedy by Jillian Stone

An Affair with Mr. Kennedy by Jillian Stone (The Gentlemen of Scotland Yard #1)


Synopsis from Goodreads
London, 1887. Part stoic gentleman, part fearless Scotland Yard man, Zeno "Zak" Kennedy is an enigma of the first order. For years, the memory of a deadly bombing at King's Cross has haunted the brilliant Scotland Yard detective. His investigation has zeroed in on a ring of aristocratic rebels whose bloody campaign for Irish revolution is terrorizing the city. When he discovers one of the treacherous lords is acquainted with his free-spirited new tenant, Cassandra St. Cloud, his inquiry pulled him unexpectedly close to the heart of the conspiracy -- and into the arms of a most intriguing lady.

Cassie is no Victorian prude. An impressionist painter with very modern ideas about life and love, she is eager for a romantic escapade that is daring and discreet. She sets her sights on her dour but handsome landlord, but after she learns their meeting was not purely accidental, she hardly has a chance to forgive her lover before their passionate affair catapults them both into a perilous adventure.

Amazon  US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | The Book Depository US/UK


* * * 
A historical romance that is definitely different. Well researched, beautifully, even meticulously crafted, sensual, authentic, believable. 

Jillian Stone's debut historical novel grabbed my attention as soon as I first heard about it. The cover is gorgeous, the topic combines Irish terrorists and impressionist painters. No wonder I succumbed.

Both Cassie and Zeno are people of the new era and quite a striking couple. Zeno is an educated, refined gentleman who works as a detective in a special unit of Scotland Yard dealing with terrorists. Cassie is an aristocratic widow, a very talented painter, who just finished her mourning and is determined to pursue her career professionally. Her father is a Royal physician, her mother is a suffragette, a doctor who treats women and lectures them on sexual health, her brother is a mad inventor. The whole family is extraordinary.

However her ex-brother-in-law is suspected in helping the terrorists, so Zeno's first attempt to get involved with Lady St.Cloud carries an ulterior motive to find out if she is involved and get closer to her brother's circles. What grows from their first meeting is a complicated love affair, a surprising union of very similar souls and a brilliant match.

The dialogues and references to the historical period feel very authentic and right, the plot itself is pretty intense and suspenseful with action following Cassie to Paris, with carriage chases and an evening tromp to Eiffel Tower...

However, the main villain is full of cliches, he is just too fiendish, too repulsive, which made me think: surely people are not just black and white? They should have traits that we find likable and their characters should be more complex.

The plot also felt like it was dragging its feet sometimes, especially during bedtime conversations. Other than that, I liked this book and I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series which already have two more gorgeous covers...

* * *
Очень неплохо и аутентично написано, сама тематика довольно необычна и неразработана в историческом романе.

Дебют Джиллиан Стоун  рассказывает о джентельменах, работающих в специальном подразделении Скотланд Ярда, расследующем заговор с целью поддержки ирландских террористов. С другой стороны, книга описывает героев нового времени - суффражисток, импрессионистов, изобретателей.

Диалоги интеллектуальны и полны ссылок на культурные мероприятия и популярные книги эпохи, из-за этого они кажутся аутентичными и реальными. Характеры Зака и Кассандры хорошо проработаны, да и сам сюжет полон различных сюрпризов и перепитий.

Однако злодейские черты главного негодяя чересчур преувеличены, и от того он невыносим, раздражающ и полон клише. В некоторых местах сюжет также сильно замедляется, и начинаешь скучать...

И всё же, несмотря на все недостатки, книга достойна прочтения, и я с нетерпением ожидаю продолжения серии!


Heather@The Flyleaf Review said...

Scotland Yard AND Impressionism, that sounds like a winning combo to me! And yeah, liking the cover. That's a pretty dashing looking fella there:) Nice review Kara:)

Blodeuedd said...

There is just something that made me interested the first time I saw this one :) I might just have to read it

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