Book 3 in the Spindle Cove series
Author: Tessa Dare
Publisher: Avon Books
Release date: 8/28/12
A temporary engagement, a lifetime in the making...
After years of fending for herself, Kate Taylor found friendship and acceptance in Spindle Cove--but she never stopped yearning for love. The very last place she'd look for it is in the arms of Corporal Thorne. The militia commander is as stone cold as he is brutally handsome. But when mysterious strangers come searching for Kate, Thorne steps forward as her fiance. He claims to have only Kate's safety in mind. So why is there smoldering passion in his kiss?
Long ago, Samuel Thorne devoted his life to guarding Kate’s happiness. He wants what's best for her, and he knows it's not marriage to a man like him. To outlast their temporary engagement, he must keep his hands off her tempting body and lock her warm smiles out of his withered heart. It's the toughest battle of this hardened warrior's life...and the first he seems destined to lose.
Kate Taylor has settled into the town of Spindle Cove and is happy for the first time in her life. After growing up in an orphanage and never really knowing anything about who her true parents are, she has friends that truly care for her. But in the back of her mind, the question about who she really is continues to bother her. She decides to try to find out more and what she learns will truly change her life in a way she never thought would be possible. Having a hand in that is a person that happens to be someone that Kate would love to avoid as much as possible. In charge of the local militia, Corporal Thorne is a man of few words and seems to avoid Kate as much as she avoids him. In fact most of the residents of Spindle Cove are aware of the two of them not getting along, so it's a big shock to everyone when they become engaged. There's a reason for the engagement and as the story unfolds there's so much to learn about the characters and the past events that have shaped their lives.
I have to admit that I released several swoony sighs while reading the scenes involving Thorne and Kate. Thorne is a man that has secretly admired Kate and when she realizes this she has a hard time understanding why. She's had to deal with people shunning her appearance all of her life because of the birthmark on her face. When she realizes that Thorne sees past the birthmark and is falling for the woman that she is, it's truly an eye opening experience as she begins to think that she may one day have true love and be happy. These scenes were very well written to allow the reader to feel what Kate has felt her entire life. It truly made the experience of this book even more heart warming as the characters both realize how important they have always been to one another. When Thorne finally reveals all, it's Kate's turn to let him know that he is not the same man from his past. I loved that these 2 characters support each other unconditionally regardless of what they are experiencing. I absolutely adored Kate's character and found her to be a strong heroine because of her ability to make the best of whatever she was going through. Even in the worst of times, she found something to enjoy. It's no wonder that Thorne couldn't help himself for falling in love with her, because I certainly did. I also fell in love with Thorne as he desperately needed the love of someone who would see past his rugged facade. Kate saw past all that and their scenes as they worked together were just so romantic and wonderful. They were the kind of scenes that made me pause while reading because of their intensity. I may have hugged my Kindle during those times. Okay I did.
I'm giving A Lady By Midnight a rating of:
Tessa Dare does an excellent job with slowly releasing clues about Kate's past that made reading this book exciting. There's also some great conversations and witty banter shared between Thorne and Kate that made me chuckle often. These 2 characters fit each other so perfectly and remind me so much of some of my favorite couples that I have read in other books. They all share the same characteristics of truly loving the one they are destined to be with and feeling that connection that they don't feel with someone else. The amazing tension felt between them also made their love story one that I was so happy to read.