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Review: Ruined by Moonlight by Emma Wildes

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Ruined by Moonlight
Author: Emma Wildes 
Release Date: Sept. 4, 2012
Publisher: Signet
Whispers of Scandal #1
ISBN: #978-0451237798
Genre: Historical Romance
Format(s): Paperback (310 pgs), e-book
Book Source: Publisher
About the book:
What is society to do when the diamonds of the first water are caught in compromising situations, one after the other? Can the young ladies survive the season with their reputations intact…or will the scandalous whispers surrounding them bring about the ultimate ruination?
When Lady Elena Morrow, the reigning belle of the ton, suddenly disappears, her family is desperate to find her—and to keep the story from spreading through London society like wildfire, before her reputation is ruined. Unfortunately, it may be impossible to avoid a scandal. Viscount Andrews, better known as the Raven, London’s most notorious rake, has gone missing at exactly the same moment.
Benjamin Wallace, Lord Heathton, is more accustomed to untangling political difficulties, rather than those of the heart. But when he is pressured to help find Lady Elena, he can’t refuse—the distraught father is also his wife’s uncle. Now he must find the beautiful debutante before the connection to Andrews does away with her innocence—assuming the vulnerable young lady wants to be found.…
What Una is talking about:
The blurb for Ruined by Moonlight was just too tempting for me to refuse.  I jumped at the chance to review this debut of the Whispers of Scandal series.  I was enchanted and surprised by Ms. Wildes novel… and I am eager to read the next book.
There is more to Ruined by Moonlight than just what the blurb reveals.  Not only do we have the mystery of the disappearance of Lady Elena, but the book delves into the newlywed lives of Lord Heathton and his wife, Lady Alicia, and their intimate battles to adjust to married life.  The parallel of personality and relationship between Lord Heathton and Alicia, as well as Elena and Viscount Andrews was fascinating.  I enjoyed the interplay between each of the couples immensely.  It was much more than what I was expecting.  We did not just follow Lord Heathton around as he tried to find the missing young Lady.  Interestingly enough, we watch as Lord Heathton and his wife, after six months of marriage…a proper English marriage, learn to actually be husband and wife; not just Lord and Lady.  

… “Now, then, would you care to hear my terms?”

“Alicia, there are no terms.  You are my wife.”

“I am so glad you recognize that fact.”  She smiled, but in truth she was shaking inside.  It was difficult to challenge her husband in this way, but maybe it was necessary.

No, it was necessary.

Benjamin’s mouth tightened.  “Of course I do.  Are you attempting to make some sort of point?

“What is my favorite color?”

While at the same time we experience what Lady Elena is being put through while being held captive with the notorious Raven.  Lady Elena is a newly debuted young woman (and considered the crème de la crème), while Viscount Andrews is considered the notorious rake of the ton.  
Just when I thought I had it all figured out, Ms. Wildes intrigues me further.  Not only is the mystery of Lady Elena’s whereabouts and the why of it all explored, but also how the scandal is to be managed.  I admit I do not read extensively historical romances, but I absolutely loved all the different parts of Ruined by Moonlight: the story of finding Lady Elena, the pursuit of Alicia to have not just a husband in title, how the scandal of Lady Elena’s disappearance is to be resolved, and the most important question, why she was taken.  It was just such an exciting read.  I found it very difficult to put down.  
If you enjoy historical romances, mysteries, and wonderful interplay between expertly created characters, pick up Ruined by Moonlight, I’m sure you will greatly enjoy the journey.
Una’s Rating:
Loved it – enthusiastically recommend (A)


Purchase Info:
Ruined By Moonlight: A Whispers of Scandal Novel
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