Review: Darling Beast by Elizabeth Hoyt

Darling Beast by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Maiden Lane (# 7)
Release Date: October 14, 2014
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Pages: 321
Source: book provided by NetGalley for review




Falsely accused of murder and mute from a near-fatal beating, Apollo Greaves, Viscount Kilbourne has escaped from Bedlam. With the Crown’s soldiers at his heels, he finds refuge in the ruins of a pleasure garden, toiling as a simple gardener. But when a vivacious young woman moves in, he’s quickly driven to distraction . . .


London’s premier actress, Lily Stump, is down on her luck when she’s forced to move into a scorched theatre with her maid and small son. But she and her tiny family aren’t the only inhabitants—a silent, hulking beast of a man also calls the charred ruins home. Yet when she catches him reading her plays, Lily realizes there’s more to this man than meets the eye.


Though scorching passion draws them together, Apollo knows that Lily is keeping secrets. When his past catches up with him, he’s forced to make a choice: his love for Lily . . . or the explosive truth that will set him free.


Review:  I’m a fan of Elizabeth Hoyt.  I’ll admit that I picked up this title because of her name alone.  I didn’t read the blurb or notice that it’s number 7 in a series that I’ve only read a couple book from.  But I was not disappointed and having not read the whole series did not in any way, shape or form, hinder my enjoyment of Darling Beast.

I’ll admit, when the story started, I really wondered where it was going.  We have a mute viscount hiding out, living as a gardener in a ruined pleasure garden and an actress and her child living there until their fortunes turn.  Their first meeting was awkward, but at the same time sweet.  The two have to overcome a lot of obstacles, including the difference in their stations in society, to get their happily ever after.

Neither character is one that has been seen much in historical romances.  Lily is an actress, playwright, mother and sister.  She’s juggling so many balls and has so many people depending on her that it’s amazing she hasn’t had a breakdown.  Apollo on the other hand is on the run and is struggling with the fact that he’s lost his voice.  He keeps most people at an arms length and allows people to believe he’s dumb because he can’t talk.  But he’s drawn to Lily and her son.

I loved the story that Ms Hoyt created.  It’s an obvious play on the classic fairy tale, Beauty and the Beast, but quite original and enjoyable.  The twists and turns as well as the spark between Apollo and Lily had me turning the pages.  I can’t wait for more by Ms Hoyt and will be going back to read the books I’ve missed in this series.