May 30, 2015

A Trio of Princes

Series: Princes #1-3
Publisher: Forever
Publication Dates: November 1, 2006 / April 1, 2007 / September 1, 2007
Source/Format: Borrowed from the library || e-book

When I flew home to the Philippines for a quick visit earlier in the year, I knew I wanted to read something that was fun and romantic. Since Racquel has been telling me to read The Raven Prince for ages, I went to see if I could find it among my library's e-book selection and was rewarded when I discovered the entire trilogy was available to borrow! The books were downloaded onto my Kindle and I indulged from the moment I settled in to wait for my flight in the airport lounge.

There's nothing quite like the comfort I get from indulging in a historical romance novel or, in this case, three historical romances. The Raven Prince, The Leopard Prince and The Serpent Prince are no exception to this rule, though they didn't quite make the cut for my favorites shelf. These titles were definitely a touch more dramatic than expected and slightly predictable (and I did expect drama, all things considered), but nevertheless, they were still enjoyable. I definitely thought that the romantic entanglements were of the usual ilk - miscommunication, misdirected emotions, misunderstandings - but these characters were fairly unique.

The Raven Prince is all about Edward de Raaf, an earl with an interest in agriculture and family and who has a fairly beastly personality, and Anna Wren, a widow who seeks to provide for her remaining family with her skills in reading and writing. These two come together first accidentally (when Anna is nearly trampled by Edward's horse), and then on purpose (when Anna becomes his secretary). It's simultaneously wonderful and annoying to see them banter and bicker, wonderful because the tension and annoying because if they communicated well, they wouldn't run into so many obstacles! But their story is fun to read for the most part, and I found myself thoroughly charmed by the end.

The Leopard Prince is about Harry Pye, steward of the Maitland estate, and Georgina Maitland, the wealthy, smart young lady who owns the estate. The dynamic between these two is obviously interesting from the start, since Georgina is in a position of power over Harry. Every one of their encounters just continues to coax the fiery tension between them and, eventually, something's got to give. I really liked seeing how they worked through the things that drove them apart, even though there were definitely times when I wanted to scream in frustration at them to just get it together!

The Serpent Prince is about Viscount Simon Iddesleigh, a charming, lethal man hellbent on exacting vengeance for his brother, and Lucy Craddock-Hayes, a country miss who has only ever known life in her little village. This romance has that whole bad boy-good girl twist, and I thought it was well done (except for the pet name being excessively used). Of all three stories, I found this one the most frustrating to read! I liked Lucy a lot, and was often raging on her behalf when Simon was being a pigheaded boor. Still, I found the story really compelling and was swept up in it right away.

After binge reading three of her novels, I can see why many readers enjoy Elizabeth Hoyt novels. Her romances are solid, if a touch dramatic for my tastes; her characters are complex, and her female characters, in my opinion, are particularly well-done. While I didn't necessarily fall as hard for her stories as I have for others in the past, they definitely have their merits. My first experience with Hoyt's novels was satisfying overall, and I definitely think I'd check out more of her work.


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