Monday, July 4, 2016

Review: Once upon a Moonlit Night by Elizabeth Hoyt

Once upon a Moonlit Night by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Maiden Lane, Book 10.5
Publisher: Forever Yours
Genre: Historical Romance
ISBN: 9781455539178
Release Date: July 5, 2016
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N
Elizabeth Hoyt Reading Order

Hippolyta Royle is running for her life. Pursued by hounds on a cold rainy night, the heiress flags down a passing carriage and throws herself at the mercy of the coach's occupant. Whoever this handsome traveler may be, he is her only hope to escape a terrible fate. But should he agree to escort her to safety, he's in for much more than he bargained for…

At first Matthew Mortimer doesn't believe Hippolyta's story, that she's a fabulously wealthy heiress who's been kidnapped. He assumes she's a beggar, an actress, or worse. But once his new travel companion washes the mud from her surprisingly lovely face, and they share a breathtaking kiss, there is no turning back…

After escaping from imprisonment – and the machinations of a man who wanted to marry her, whether or not she was willing – Hippolyta Royale is on the run. It’s a dark and rainy night, she doesn’t know the area, and hounds are hunting for her. Pure luck lands the beautiful heiress in the path of Matthew Mortimer, an explorer who has just returned to England after finding out he’s inherited an earldom. She’s wet and bedraggled, he thinks she’s an actress rather than the heiress she claims to be, and the situation is altogether improper. But on the road, apart from society’s prying eyes, these two unlikely travelling companions are about to find an unexpected connection that could last a lifetime.

Once upon a Moonlit Night is an incredibly fun, fast-paced romance that made me smile more than once. Elizabeth Hoyt charmed the heck out of me with Hippolyta and Matthew’s romance (though the addition of an adorable mongoose didn’t hurt).

Hippolyta has been a background character in the Maiden Lane series for the past few books, and I was excited to learn more about her. As this was a novella, we didn’t actually learn quite as much about her as I’d hoped. Her biggest problem (aside from the kidnapping) is she’s forced to hide a part of herself from society. Her mother was Indian, and having to hide that, cut herself off from her heritage so that she can make a good match, breaks her heart (and mine). How Hippolyta comes into her own is something I’ll leave for readers to discover. As for Matthew, we don’t learn too much about him either, due to the short format of the story, but he’s an endearing hero. He’s a bit gruff and cynical to start, but the way he falls for Hippolyta melted my heart. They fall in love at a quick pace and the story is lively, sexy, and thoroughly enjoyable. However, I really wish Once upon a Moonlit Night had been a full-length novel, because all the time jumps made me feel like I was missing out a bit on their love story. I absolutely adored what I read and Maiden Lane fans won’t want to miss Once upon a Moonlit Night. That being said, I know how unique and well-rounded Ms. Hoyt’s characters and stories usually are and with a bit more rounding out, Hippolyta, Matthew, and their romance could match that.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.