ONCE UPON A MOONLIT NIGHT by Elizabeth Hoyt (July 5, 2016; Forever Yours Ebook; A Maiden Lane Series Novella)
From New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Hoyt comes a delightful Maiden Lane novella that begins once upon a moonlit night---and ends wickedly, wonderfully ever after . . .
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 . . .
I'm going to start by throwing out my one and only complaint...I wish this had been a full length book. Novellas are already challenging for me with their rushed story. Hippolyta Royle has been a rather endearing character that has shown up throughout the Maiden Lane series and after her harrowing experience in Duke of Sin, it would have been nice to have a more developed story for her.
However, with that said, I thoroughly enjoyed Once Upon a Moonlit Night. This novella backs up and picks up where Hippolyta is running for her life and freedom in Duke of Sin. On an isolated road she flags down a passing carriage. Her rescuer, Matthew Mortimer, turns out to be quite the brash arse who pushes Hippolyta's patience. All she wants is to find her way back home to her father in London. All he wants is to be rid of Hippolyta, a perceived road beggar, who has disrupted his travels to London to save his family's business.
Between the verbal sparring, flirting, and cheekiness, Hippolyta, Matthew, and even Tommy Teapot, make quite the wonderful travel companions. A couple obstacles are thrown their way but the pair eventually overcome everything by sticking together, trusting and eventually finding love with one another.
Fantastic and engaging characters as always, it was easy to get swept away with Hippolyta and Matthew in Once Upon A Moonlit Night.
Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times bestselling author of over seventeen lush historical romances including the Maiden Lane series. Publishers Weekly has called her writing "mesmerizing." She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with three untrained dogs, a garden in constant need of weeding, and the long-suffering Mr. Hoyt.