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The Mystery Kiss
The Mystery Kiss
Author: Judith A. Lansdowne
Her Secret Admirer — A shipbuilder's daughter forced into marriage with a cruel Viscount, Fleur has always been an outcast in society. Now a widow, she returns to London for the Season to present her stepdaughter. For Althea's sake, she endures the cutting remarks, the cruel snubs -- until she discovers an ally, a mysterious gentleman w...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780821770160
ISBN-10: 0821770160
Publication Date: 4/1/2001
Pages: 352
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.

3.7 stars, based on 22 ratings
Publisher: Zebra Books
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Members Wishing: 0
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

virgosun avatar reviewed The Mystery Kiss on + 886 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
It's not often that secondary characters are just as interesting as the lead couple, but this story has quite a few and with an intriguing mystery to boot. Our hero, Atticus, was one of the most tender heroes I've read. He was a strong character but very vulnerable about his size and looks. He and Fleur made a wonderful couple and his relationship with his young son was very loving. Very romantic in an old school way. 3.8 stars.
copiousreader avatar reviewed The Mystery Kiss on
Helpful Score: 2
Memories of her late husband's physical and mental abuse still haunt Fleur's sleep, even though Marston has been dead for more than a year. Despite her ill treatment at the hands of her husband and London society, Fleur plans to take her stepdaughter Althea to London for the season, introducing her to a "most intriguing and delightful sort of world." By chance, she encounters Atticus Charles Howard, the Earl of Hartshire, along the way.

London society does not tolerate those who wish to ingratiate themselves in their midst. Fleur, the daughter of a shipbuilder, knows very well the rude remarks, snide comments, and cruel gossip. Nevertheless, she risks her dignity, despite disparaging comments comparing her to an "encroaching mushroom", to provide Althea a coming out. Little does Fleur suspect that someone watches, admiring her strength of spirit, until a few whispers at the appropriate moments help her to secure just the right tone to hush the tongue wagging and thereby substitute admiration for the accustomed viciousness.

A widower with a mysterious and exciting past, Atticus confidently tangles with spies and radicals seeking to destroy the crown even as he lacks the same confidence in his personal life. The chance meeting with Fleur captures his imagination, and when he arrives in London after a four year absence, Atticus can't resist inquiring about her. Soon he seems to magically appear at just the right moments Fleur most needs encouragement, whether it be in person, or through illusion and the appellation "Montague". Fleur's heart and desire becomes torn between the two - Atticus, her benevolent friend or the mysterious "Montague" who hides in the shadows with words of encouragement. Although it only takes a single magical kiss to convince Atticus of his growing feeling for Fleur, he fears trying to court her, for Atticus can't imagine her loving such a physically large man as he is.

There are so many wonderful things to rave about in this novel -- the manner in which Fleur blossoms from shy and demure to someone with a lot more confidence, to Atticus who doesn't seem to realize that his kindness and general good humor completely transcends his lack of good looks.

I also admit to being captivated by the myriad of details that make THE MYSTERY KISS so extraordinary. For example, the homeopathic cure for motion sickness, the design of Fleur's riding habit, even the comparison of Fleur to a mushroom create a truly delightful tale. And Henry, the tickler dormouse who loves Atticus' pockets, makes an original pet. It's refreshing to read a novel not built on extreme youth and misunderstandings; thereby replacing the predictable and ordinary plot with one that's sharply invigorating.

THE MYSTERY KISS is delightful, and comes highly recommended.
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Book Wiki

Original Publication Date (YYYY-MM-DD)
Fleur, Lady Marston (Primary Character)
Althea Avondale (Major Character)
Malcom, Lord Marston (Major Character)