I received a complementary copy of “Through the Smoke” by Brenda Novak from NetGalley.com to review. All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links.
“Through the Smoke” Synopsis
A shocking betrayal…
Riches. Power. An ancient heritage of pride. The Earl of Druridge wanted only for an heir. So when he learned that his wife was carrying another man’s child, he was filled with a thirst for vengeance.
But he wasn’t the one who caused Katherine’s death. Or was he? To his horror, he remembers nothing of that dreadful night, when their last shocking confrontation ended in scorching flame and cold blood.
A forbidden love…
Rachel McTavish, the beautiful daughter of a coal miner, knows something about the fire that took Lady Katherine’s life. In secret, the strong-willed girl strikes a bargain with the desperate earl: he must send his physician to help her dying mother or he may go to the scaffold—and the devil. The earl agrees, but Rachel is still unsure that her revelation will be enough to save him when so many wish him dead.
Passionately drawn to the nobleman, despite all the doubt and mystery that shrouds him, Rachel wonders if he can really be a murderer. Or if he is the only man who will ever own her heart…
“Through the Smoke” Review
“Through the Smoke” is billed as a historical romance as it is set in 1830s England.
Typical of that era, the hero, who is the Earl of Druridge, is a brooding, wealthy man. The Earl lost his wife in a fire but needs to clear his name so that he won’t be hang. He seeks help from an unlikely ally—the daughter of a coalminer in a nearby village.
There were elements of this story that I absolutely loved—the brooding man, the crazy staff and the damsel in distress. All of these are classic elements of a good romance. Outside of the classics, I seldom read historical romances written by modern writers. Even with my limited exposure to historical romances, I do believe the interactions between the Duke and Rachel were too contemporary. Is that something I could get past? Yes.
I enjoyed the story. Novak is a good writer who, like many successful writers, has a formula to her work. I knew Rachel would eventually fall for the duke. At the same time they both would discover themselves during the process.
This book gets 3.5 stars from me.
My next review will be “Discovering You” – also by Brenda Novak.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”