Review copy provided by publisher
Choc Lit, October 2013
Synopsis- What would you give to be free?
Georgiana da Silva is catapulted out of the Victorian drawing rooms and into a world of danger when she escapes her fiendish fiancé to engage in a mad dash across the world to save her brother before an unknown assassin can find him.
Meanwhile, Captain Harry Trent is setting sail for New Zealand. With a mission to complete and the law on his heels, he’s got enough trouble of his own without further complications.
Thrown together, unable to trust anyone, Georgiana and Harry are intent on fulfilling their missions despite the distractions of the other. But liberty comes at a price and the closer they get, the more they must question the true cost of being free.
Masquerades, deceptions and subterfuge – and that’s just on the heroine’s part.
Review- Close to the Wind by NZ author Zana Bell is an entertaining historical romance that spans the globe, from England to our Aussie neighbour, New Zealand. Georgiana da Silva is not your typical heroine in this genre, as while her peers are perusing ball rooms for a potential husband, Georgiana sneaks out at night to act in the theatre. Her childhood in the circus doesn’t quite prepare her for the life of a Lady, but her Aunt is determined to find her a husband and make her fit the bill.
When Georgiana overhears her fiancé Jasper talk of a plan to murder her brother Charles and inherit his gold, she flees, claiming she’s run away to the circus. Instead she poses as a young boy and snags a job on a ship with Captain Harry Trent. Her attraction to him is almost instantaneous, though for obvious reasons must be concealed. I enjoyed reading about Georgiana’s (a.k.a George) escapades on the boat, how she fooled so many men and how she was so easily able to fall into the role of a young lad. Harry just sees George as a little brat and when it comes to his love life he has no serious plans to settle down as he believes sailing is no life for a woman.
The viewpoint is mainly in Georgiana’s perspective though there are sporadic scenes throughout the story that gives us a glimpse of Harry’s thoughts and feelings. I must admit, I did feel that Georgiana was a ‘boy’ for a little too long which meant the romance was prolonged with Harry not developing feelings for her until much later in the story (when she’s a woman again!).
Once Georgiana’s identity is discovered, Harry is not pleased. A ship full of men is no safe place for a Lady- not that Georgiana cares. Even though he tries to extricate himself from her, their paths continue to cross as they are both set on getting to New Zealand. Georgiana to see her brother Charles and Harry to clear his name for a murder he didn’t commit. Georgiana seemed to lose some of her personality once she was a ‘woman’ again as the confines of being a Lady didn’t quite fit with her desire to be an actress and entertain. So, I was happy when these aspects of her personality began to re-emerge later in the story and that Harry was accepting of this.
There’s plenty happening in Close to the Wind with a race across the globe with two infuriatingly endearing characters plus a surprise twist at the end. An enjoyable historical romance with an amusing hero/heroine duo who are just as wild as they are contained; I do recommend this one to fans of the genre.
“I loved this book!”
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