Sunday, May 29, 2011

Review: "Mr. Impossible" by Loretta Chase

Mr. Impossible (Carsington Brothers, #2)Mr. Impossible by Loretta Chase

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a very fun historical romance set in an "exotic" location (Egypt), with charming and adventurous characters. The 2nd book in the Carsington Brothers series, Mr. Impossible is about Rupert Carsington, the reckless 4th son of the powerful Earl of Hargate.

Here's what we learn about Rupert in the 1st pages of the book:

In the month and a half since the Earl of Hargate’s fourth son had arrived in Egypt, he had broken twenty-three separate laws and been jailed nine times. For what Mr. Carsington had cost the
(England) consulate in fines and bribes, Mr. Salt (His Majesty's consul general) might have dismantled and shipped to England one of the smaller temples on the island of Philae.

He now knew exactly why Lord Hargate had sent his twenty-nine-year-old offspring to Egypt. It was not, as his lordship had written, “to assist the consul general in his services on behalf of the nation.”

It was to saddle someone else with the responsibility and expense.

LOL! Yes, Rupert Carsington is the ultimate "Mr. Impossible".

When Mrs. Daphne Pembroke, a 28-year-old widow who's (secretly) a linguistic genius and has been trying to solve the mystery of Egyptian writing for years, seeks Mr. Salt's assistance to rescue her kidnapped brother Miles, the "helpful" consul general finds the perfect opportunity to get himself rid of the troublemaker Mr. Carsington and offers the gentleman's services to her. Daphne isn't sure about Rupert when she meets him because he seems to be, well, dim-witted, but she takes him anyway - after all, she's intelligent enough for both and all she needs from him are his brawny body. No, not for that! At least, not right away. ;)

That's how Rupert and Daphne get together and start their adventurous quest for her brother Miles - and what a bumpy and fun ride that turns out to be!

Cliché, but I have to say it: Rupert and Daphne were perfect for each other. He was tall, dark, handsome and, yay!, not as stupid as he pretended to be. She was a bookish, no-nonsense, beautiful woman "trained" by her deceased husband to hide her figure and her passions. He made her laugh and set her free of her misconceptions about herself, and she helped him find a purpose in life: to love her and make her happy. Yup, that was it - and that was my "problem" with this book. I loved Rupert's antics and his sense of humor was contagious, but I'm not sure I got him. I didn't undertand why he acted the way he did, pretending to be an idiot when he was clearly an intelligent man. What good came out of it? His family thought he was a helpless hellion. They loved him, but I don't think they respected him much. Luckily for him, Daphne saw through his façade and fell in love with him. :)

Besides Rupert and Daphne, this book also has a charming set of secondary characters. Daphne's crazy servants were hillarious and the villains - yes, there was more than one - were conniving and ruthless. I was surprised at the body count in this book, but Ms. Chase didn't dwell on that so I decided to let it go. I wasn't going to let that pesky, gory "detail" ruin my fun, LOL.

As for the plot, this story had it all. Action, intrigue, suspense, humor, romance, mayhem, you name it. All events were aptly connected in the end, even the ones that were mentioned for no obvious reason at first. I love it when an author keeps all the facts in line and doesn't get lost somewhere in the middle of the road. (Yes, Lora Leigh, I'm talking to you! LOL) The ending was a little vague to suit me. The HEA was there, but I didn't get enough of it to see what kind of life Rupert and Daphne will have. I can't say more, you'll have to read the book to understand (or not) how I feel about it.

Overall, I had a great, fun time reading this book. It didn't make my keepers shelf, but I highly recommend it for everyone who loves fun historical romances.

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