Author: Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Maiden Lane Series (Book Four)
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Format: audiobook via Library
Synopsis: A MASKED MAN . . .
Winter Makepeace lives a double life. By day he's the stoic headmaster of a home for foundling children. But the night brings out a darker side of Winter. As the moon rises, so does the Ghost of St. Giles-protector, judge, fugitive. When the Ghost, beaten and wounded, is rescued by a beautiful aristocrat, Winter has no idea that his two worlds are about to collide.
A DANGEROUS WOMAN . . .
Lady Isabel Beckinhall enjoys nothing more than a challenge. Yet when she's asked to tutor the Home's dour manager in the ways of society-flirtation, double-entendres, and scandalous liaisons-Isabel can't help wondering why his eyes seem so familiar-and his lips so tempting.
A PASSION NEITHER COULD DENY
During the day Isabel and Winter engage in a battle of wills. At night their passions are revealed . . . But when little girls start disappearing from St. Giles, Winter must avenge them. For that he might have to sacrifice everything-the Home, Isabel . . . and his life.
Thief of Shadows is the fourth book of the Maiden Lane Series by Elizabeth Hoyt. Thus far, it is my least favorite of the four. Not to say that I didn't enjoy it, I just found the previous two books to be more entertaining and the characters to be more colorful than those in this book. I mean, it's hard to compete with Mickey, a naughty pirate from the previous book. Am I right?
This time, we follow Winter Makepeace, who we have gotten to know fairly well over the course of the series, thus far. I expected his story to come sooner than later, so I was not surprised to find him in book number four. He is the manager of a children's home as well as a vigilante harlequin-masked man who rights wrongs in the shadows of St. Giles.
We've actually gotten several glimpses of the Ghost of St. Giles in past books. I was not shocked to find out that Winter was behind the mask. Or at least, one of them. And I must say that the mystery of the children snatching villains was fascinating. I tried to follow the clues the best I could and still didn't guess who was responsible.
On the romance side, our lady is Isabelle, a widowed woman with a kind but sheltered heart. In order to save Winter's job, she somehow becomes his tutor in an attempt to make Winter more gentlemanly than he currently is. I found this plot to be less exciting than those of previous books. I'm not sure why attending balls would be required of a manager of a children's home, anyway.
I liked Isabelle, for the most part, though I did find her to be a little dull of a character, overall. Eventually, she does begin to impress me, but for most of the book we are stuck in a loop of tutoring, talking about good manners, and pointless public outings. I do not envy the people of this time period. It sounds like a dreadfully boring way to live.
There was some excitement here and there, though. I found Lady Penelope to be just annoying enough to dislike but not enough to become bothered by her. I laughed at her, often, and she was probably the only real spark of humor I found in the entire book. Her and her companion, Miss Greaves, brought me many chuckles.
The highlight, for me, was the narrator of this audiobook. I have tried listening to other audiobooks and sometimes a female speaker can be downright terrible when voicing male parts. I thought this narrator did a fantastic job and did not overdo it on the male lines. The love scenes were nicely read, as well.
This was a good read and a pleasure to listen to and I plan to do an audiobook for the next book of the series, too. 3 suns!