cover image The Handmaiden's Necklace

The Handmaiden's Necklace

Kat Martin, . . Mira, $7.99 (407pp) ISBN 978-0-7783-2207-8

In the fast-paced final volume of Martin's Regency trilogy that began with The Bride's Necklace , Danielle Duval and Rafael, Duke of Sheffield, meet again in London, five years after scandal ended their engagement. When Rafe investigates and learns that he and Dani were victims of a plot to prevent their marriage, he pursues Dani to America, where she's traveling to wed another. Repeated episodes of romantic tension lead to sizzling love scenes, but Rafe's constant distrust of Dani and his use of blackmail to force her to marry him make him come across as a little too high-handed and arrogant. The author's well-honed ability to deliver spicy romance is undercut by a hero with whom most readers will find it hard to believe the heroine will live happily-ever-after. (Jan.)