By the time one of my books is published I am usually more than half-way through writing the next. This means long hours spent in research and at the computer - at least physically. Mentally and emotionally I'm in another time, living the dramatic adventures and heart-wrenching emotions of my hero and heroine with them. So when my publisher sent me a copy of a review of Devil's Prize posted by Romance Junkies I was thrilled as it brought back wonderful memories of writing that story.
Life is tough and precarious for all who live on the Cornish coast and attempt to make their living in shipping. Devlin "Devil" Varcoe is constantly at risk as he smuggles contraband. Will the fierce sea or the revenue men finally catch up with him? He has earned his nickname, "Devil" by being a fierce taskmaster who will not tolerate those who oppose him or attempt to betray him or those around him. Devlin has had to develop a hard exterior since he has no one else to support him in his ventures. He is estranged from his brother and father who blame him for his mother's death, among other things.
Devlin's good looks and self confidence make it easy for him to have any woman he chooses, but he never risks his heart. He is taken by surprise by Tamara Gillis who seduces him. She comes from a very conservative family, but she becomes wanton and wild to capture the elusive Devlin.
Jenefer Trevanion's father has been financing Devlin's smuggling adventures. A fire destroys Jenefer's family home and kills her father. This sudden change throws both Jenefer's and Devlin's lives into turmoil. They have to deal many issues that will change their lives forever or maybe even lead to untimely death.
The author never gives an exact date in this haunting historical novel, but she does mention that Napoleon is 29 years old, which puts this timeless tale into perspective. Her vivid descriptions pulled me right into the story. I could almost smell the salt air and hear the crashing waves. I have never been to Cornwall, but I could visualize it as I walked along with the characters who populated DEVIL'S PRIZE.
Devlin is every inch the alpha male, but he does have a tender side. Despite her wild ways, Tamara is a woman in love who knows what she wants and is willing to take risks to get it. Jenefer is fiercely courageous. In a time when opportunities were extremely limited for women, she does not moan and sink into despair, but does whatever it takes to survive.
DEVIL'S PRIZE is sure to please readers of historical who love a swashbuckling saga with a little spicy romance on the side.