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If You Give a Smuggler a Secret*

Well-Written Story, But…

I am of several minds about this book. I actually found the characters engaging. I thought the hero and heroine had good chemistry. The plot kept moving, and there was a lot going on. So, in general, I liked the story as given. But I had other issues with aspects of this book. While I wouldn’t call what happens at the end to be a true cliffhanger, the book does end very abruptly, in the middle of a pivotal scene (it feels like). I chose this book to review on a book review site because I enjoy historical romance, but I am accustomed to romances–even those in a series–that end the couple’s main story. This series is actually a set of episodic novels that tell the full tale of the couple. As a series isn’t typically set up this way, I think the author should let readers know in the book blurb that the book doesn’t stand on its own and that you will need to buy the other books to get the couple’s full story. That way, people can decide if they want to invest in an entire series or not. Not everybody likes episodic tales. Some readers prefer to have the full story all at once. My other issue with this book is that I prefer my Regencies to be written in a somewhat elevated style. I don’t mean in an inaccessible, hoity-toity way, but rather I equate the use of one word or phrase paragraphs and sentence fragments with contemporary romance writing. I think historical romance needs to have full sentences and proper paragraphs, or else it doesn’t feel wholly historical.

EDITED August 2019: I just wanted to give an update because I noticed now that the blurb for this book has been amended to at least hint that the books in this series are episodic in nature. I appreciate the author doing that. I still won’t change my rating, because I think the ending of this book was too abrupt, even knowing that it is episodic in nature.

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