Published by Loveswept on February 23rd 2016
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo
Forced to do the bidding of a corrupt government minister, Marianne de Bonnard agrees to plant incriminating evidence in the offices of France’s most notorious spymaster. Under cover of night, the tightrope-walking thief puts her skills to good use—until her aerial stunt is foiled when her target appears in the window and, with consummate poise, helps Marianne off the wire and into his lair. The tremors that run through her body are not just from fear; there’s an unwanted frisson of desire there, too. But is it because of her elegant, wickedly handsome host . . . or his proposition?
Nicolas Valette has had plans for his graceful trespasser since he witnessed her unique skills at the Cirque Olympique. Sinuous as a cat, Marianne is perfect for his next mission, but she refuses his generous offer for fear of disobeying her family’s tormenter. When their mutual enemy auctions off her virginity to the highest bidder, Nicolas leaps at the chance to purchase her cooperation. Keeping her will be like trying to tame a wild animal, but what’s life without a little risk? Besides, Nicolas and Marianne both want the same thing: revenge—and, perhaps, something else that’s equally delicious.
Includes a special message from the editor, as well as an excerpt from another Loveswept title.
~~Reviewed by Monique~~
What an absolutely brilliant book! TO STEAL A HEART is filled with spectacular action scenes that will take your breath away; it feels so historically authentic, it could well stand alongside Alexandre Dumas’ classics, and not clash. Marianne Bonnard was born in an aristocratic family, her parents were victims of the guillotine during the French Revolution, and she has been on her own for five years, since she was fourteen, taking care of her younger sister Sophie. It’s 1815, and Marianne is now a tightrope walker and a knife thrower in a circus, however to insure Sophie’s safety, she has to steal and do dirty work for Jean-Jacques Duval, who is a government official as well as some sort of overseer of bordellos, and a unsavoury personage. To keep Marianne in line, he always threatens to make Sophie work as a whore. Then Duval asks Marianne to plant some documents in Nicolas Valette’s room. Nicolas is a spy, and he’s had his eye on Marianne for a bit; she has what he needs for a most important job. The nefarious Duval, to punish Marianne, has decided to auction her virginity, and Nicolas buys her services, as well as her sister’s. And to say the least, Marianne is not happy about it, but at least the Bonnard sisters should be relatively safe, but will Marianne lose her heart?
I loved Marianne and Nicolas right from the start; she’s prickly but so endearing, and he’s your average debonair Regency James Bond; TO STEAL A HEART has a Mission Impossible feel, all the while remaining faithful to the era. I’m also very pleased to say that the virginity trope didn’t go as I feared. TO STEAL A HEART is extremely well written, thoroughly researched, and very fast paced. It’s so well detailed, I felt I was in Paris at the time, and I could picture all the characters clearly, the circus vividly pictured, and O joy! the French used is nearly flawless! Marianne only dreams of freedom for herself and Sophie, she trusts no one, and Nicolas is as independent as they come, and I will say no more about the romance because it couldn’t be any more perfect. Seeing the title of the next instalment in this series, I’m already jumping for joy!
I voluntarily reviewed an Advanced Readers Copy of this book.