Till Dawn With the Devil
Lords of Vice - Book 2
By Alexandra Hawkins
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release Date: August 3, 2010
I have a real soft spot for books featuring a physically flawed hero or heroine. In Till Dawn With the Devil, the heroine, Lady Sophia Northam, has damaged eyesight due to a traumatic occurrence when she was a child. Though, her flaw isn’t the underlying theme of the book...murder and scandal is.
Gabriel Housley, Earl of Rainecourt, or Reign as he is most often referred to, has lived in the shadow and conjecture of scandal for so long that it’s a natural part of his life. His mother died when he was a child and later his father was involved in a horrendous murder-suicide that also included a couple of family friends. Years later, Reign met and fell in love with a young woman and eventually married her when it was discovered she was with child. Their short-lived marriage was tumultuous (at best) and then one night their arguing went to an all new level when she revealed to Reign that her baby wasn’t his. The next morning, after waking up with a hangover, Reign learned that his wife was dead after falling and breaking her neck. Ever since then, the rumor was that he killed her in a drunken rage, despite the fact that the magistrate ruled it an accident. Needless to say, Reign has not had an easy life. Thankfully, he has good friends in the Lords of Vice, a group of men who are notorious for their expertise in the art of seduction. They are there for him through thick and thin. Reign harbors no desire to marry again, and for good reason given his past. That is until he meets the lovely Lady Sophia Northam.
After being sheltered by her overprotective brothers for much of her life due to her “disability”, Sophia is ready to go to London and face the ghosts of her past. When she encounters Reign at a ball, she knows him to be the son of the man who killed her parents, but she doesn’t hold that against him as he was just a boy when it happened. They enjoy a waltz and a nice chat in which Sophia tells him about her poor eyesight but not her family’s name. It isn’t until her brother, the current earl, comes to claim her that Reign realizes who she is—the girl that his father almost killed years before. However, that doesn’t stop him from wanting her. But can they overcome their families’ tragic history and find love with each other?
Alexandra Hawkins delivers again with another sinfully delicious Regency historical. Her characters are vibrant, sincere and will surely steal your heart. Reign and Sophia had to overcome a great deal (including a startling plot twist!) to heal and reach their “happily ever after”. I particularly loved Sophia and appreciated Ms. Hawkins’s handling of her near blindness. She’s one of those characters that you just love to root for. Till Dawn With the Devil is a wonderful addition to the Lords of Vice series and I can’t wait for the next delectable installment, After Dark With a Scoundrel, out next February!