Thursday, February 09, 2006

Blood Moon Over Britain by Morag McKendrick Pippin

I found Pippin's debut book, Blood Moon Over Bengal, very promising so I knew I would be looking for her next release. Blood Moon Over Britain is not a sequel to Bengal so I can't quite figure out why the title is so similar or what the significance is of 'blood moon.' I'm clueless. Sounds kind of vampirey or werewolfy (is that a word?), doesn't it, but it's definitely not. Maybe there was an author's note in the book on this but I missed it. I took it back to the library anyway so I can't look it up. If anyone knows let me know.

I can't remember reading any romance set in this place and time, and I was so pleased to find that Britain is even better Bengal. This historical romantic suspense is a spy thriller set in 1942 Britain, a very bleak period in Britain's history. They are fighting the Nazis almost alone and trying to deal with severe rationing, blackouts and the constant fear of nightly bombing raids.

Alistair Fielding is an Inspector with Scotland Yard when he is called to investigate an apparent suicide. But he quickly realizes that things are not what they seem. When he meets the victim's cousin, Cicely Winterbourne, he is convinced that she is hiding something. Cecily claims to be a lowly file clerk. But in reality she is involved with the German Enigma Code, a top secret government codebreaking project.

Soon Alistair learns that Cecily is deeply involved in this project when she reveals one particulary nasty secret that absolutely appalls him. Alistair is very attracted to her but doesn't trust her even when he is falling in love with her. Cecily is a fantastic heroine. She's intelligent, independent and incredibly strong. I really liked her.

BMOB is fast paced and absolutely riveting. It turns into a road romance quickly and follows the H/H's progress from London across the British countryside to Cornwall via train, boat, car, and on foot. They get separated somewhere in the middle of the book when Alistair becomes extremely ill and Cecily must continue her journey alone, but they come back together near the end.

I enjoyed the spies and intrigue which was meshed very well with the romance and sizzling sex scenes. Alistair and Cecily, and the secondary characters are all fully drawn. Pippin has done her homework to get the historical accuracy right. The dialogue and attitudes from that era (plus British terminology) was realistic but the slang was a little overwhelming at first. Luckily, Pippin helps the reader with a slang glossary in the back of the book which I only had to refer to a couple of times. If you're looking for something unusual, this book (which was my favorite road romance of 2005) will fit the bill.

My grade: B+


Rosario said...

Why didn't I hear about this one until now? I'm SO adding this one to my wish list! Thanks for the review!

Kristie (J) said...

I bought this one about a month ago along with a number of others and then kind of forgot I had it. Thanks for reminding me. I will try and find it today and read it. I'm glad to hear you liked it. It got mixed reviews but I know we have very similar tastes.

ReneeW said...

Rosario: There has not been much buzz about it on blogs or AAR (and they didn't review it). But TRR reviewed it and gave it 4 hearts, so I went searching for it since I liked BMOBengal.

Kristie: OK, now I'm feeling smug. Hehe, I finally read a good book before you :) I hope you like it.

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