Traitor's Kiss & Lover's Kiss

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Traitor's Kiss & Lover's Kiss

Traitor's Kiss 4 / 5 Hearts
Gabriel Pennistan is a man of science. He enjoys studying things and paying attention to detail. This desire to learn had him travel to Portugal, though Europe was in the mist of a war with Napoleon, to learn about astronomy. While there his mentor urged him to do good for mankind. Upon the mentor’s death, Gabriel takes this lesson to heart and approaches Wellington about buying a commission in the Army. Wellington asks if Gabriel could instead travel about as a man of science and collect details that he might use. Gabriel agrees and now finds himself in a French prison in Le Havre. Is he a man of science? A spy? A murder? Or all three?
Charlotte Parnell needs money and will do just about anything to get it. She’s also a master of disguises. So, when she is asked to help of man of science escape from prison for a large sum of money, she doesn’t hesitate to take it. What she finds is not the man she expected. Still a job is a job and she is determined to deliver Gabriel to England.
Georges is Charlotte’s right hand man. He’s right there with her all the way through all of her adventures. But what exactly is he to Charlotte?
This book is divided into two sections. The first deals with getting Gabriel out of France and dodging the French troops, a horny officer and unexpected allies. The second section is once Gabriel is back in England where several high placed men are trying to get him hung for being a traitor! Once again, unexpected allies appear as well as one very good master of disguises.
I enjoyed this book. 
The characters were believable. When Charlotte explains that if she walks around town with a very low cut dress no one notices who she is with because they are all too busy watching her, you know she has thought this through and knows how to play this role. Gabriel’s reaction to the first hot bath that he has had in months is perfect. I think we all know that ahh feeling. The men trying Gabriel are also perfect. Seven men are died and Gabriel was the last to see them alive. They have to blame someone so who better than Gabriel? 
And who is the real Charlotte or is Charlotte even a real person? Why are they taking children with them to England? Where did these children come from? What is going on? Why does Charlotte need all this money? Poor Gabriel, these are the questions he is trying to figure out as Charlotte disappears from his life seconds after arriving in England. Better yet, how will he find her/them?
Readers are also given some background of the war that is raging. You aren’t given battles or a lot of details but simply little things like the French are fighting on two fronts. In other words, enough to round out the story but not enough to distract from it. Ms Blayney blended this into her story extremely well.
The biggest question is will the man of science and this mysterious woman ever get back together and if they do, can they find a way to stay together.
Lover's Kiss - 5/5 - Reviewer Top Pick
Michael Garret had worked as a spy in France during the war against Napoleon. He would give information to the French concerning the British and then do whatever he could to protect the British. Now, he’s home in England and looking for work. He wants to put the war behind him along with all the lies and deception. He thought to try in the small town of Pennsford or the castle near it but the thought of working for the Duke who seemed to rule this entire area was repugnant. Therefore, Michael was on his way to Manchester and the factories, sure to find work there. But while taking what he thought was the road to Manchester he finds a near naked woman wondering in the woods. With snow on the ground, this didn’t look good and there was no way Michael could leave this woman to die.
Lady Olivia Pennistan had been kidnapped. She wasn’t sure by who or why but she knew enough to want to get way. The kidnappers had taken most of her clothes, drugged her and one even tried to strangle her! Finally too cold and drugged to go on, she lies down to take a nap only to be found by a strange man. Though this man seemed to want to help, how was Olivia to know if he was part of this kidnapping scheme? Introducing herself as Lollie and telling tales of working in the kitchen, Michael believes that though Lollie may be more than a commoner, she isn’t very far up in the higher society. She intrigues him as they make their way back to Pennsford and Lollie’s family.
Though Lollie does love to work in the kitchen and experiment with food, she is also the sister of the duke. When Michael discovers this fact, he also finds more complications that he’d care to. Even so, when the duke offers him a job providing security for the castle and its inhabitants, Michael accepts as he doesn’t think Lollie is safe and though he isn’t good enough for a duke’s sister, he is good at keeping her safe. His problem, who is going to keep her safe from him when she’s trying to tempt him and he’s tempted?
This story is written so I couldn’t wait to see what next. Though I was fairly sure how it was going to end almost from the beginning, the who were the kidnappers and why and how is Lollie going to snare Michael kept me interested. The interactions between the characters kept the book lively. Lord David greeting Michael with a punch to Big Sam getting a promotion were things that kept the book alive. 
This is another book about the Pennistan family. It is paired up with Traitor’s Kiss which is about Lollie’s brother, Lord Gabriel. Originally, these were to released separately and they can be read separately. Each story is complete without the other though Gabriel is mentioned in Lover’s Kiss. 
The characters are fairly well developed and with depth. Lollie is described as being spoiled, head strong and talented in the kitchen. Throughout the book, there are excellent examples of all of these traits as well as her good heart. Lord David is hot tempered and opinionated. He also doesn’t say much. Michael wonders how he ever made it in the Navy. The biggest problem with the characters being so alive is I wanted to know more. Hopefully, the rest of the Pennistan family will get their own books.
While I loved this book, I was left confused at the very end. All through the book, the Duke’s wife was in London awaiting the birth of a child. During the Epilogue, the Duke is in France grieving. This leaves the reader to wonder what happened to his wife and his children. Perhaps we’ll find out in the next book?

Book Blurb for Traitor's Kiss & Lover's Kiss

In this new series, the brothers and sisters of the Duke of Meryon find happiness in spite of hardship, loss, and heartbreak... In Traitor's Kiss, Charlotte Parnell meets Lord Gabriel Pennistan, the Duke's youngest brother, in a France facing Napoleon's failed effort to take over the world. Surrounded by lies and deceit the two must overcome their own failures and learn to trust their judgment before they can trust each other. Lover's Kiss opens as Michael Garrett, traveling through the Peak District In Derbyshire, finds a young woman wandering through the woods naked and near death. Michael saves her only to become part of the intrigue and heartache that surrounds the Pennistan Family.

Night Owl Reviews Nov, 2008 4.50