The title: Mr. Impossible
The author: Loretta Chase
Publication: Penguin, 2005
Got it from: The Book Depository, 2010
Never let it be said that I will pass up a book involving a) Victorian Egypt; b) adventure; c) romance. Inevitable comparisons must be made to Amelia Peabody - can anything be as good as that series? Alas, no. Can fun times be had, a la The Mummy? Heck, yes.
Daphne Pembroke is a scholar and a widow whose late husband was, unfortunately, a lot older and a big jerkass. He tried to curb Daphne's passion for sex and learning and was pretty successful at making her feel like she was a deviant. Since she was only nineteen when she got married, she spent a long time building walls to save her hidden self. Now it's ten years later, she's a filthy rich widow and her brother Miles has gotten himself kidnapped, because everybody assumes he's the brains behind the brother-sister duo. Being more of a cerebral person, she ends up hiring notorious bad boy Rupert Carsington (who has, like, a million sexy brothers who all get their own romance novels) to help her rescue him.
Of course the whole thing goes awry because the two of them end up in lust as well as fighting all the time. Rupert pretends to be dumber than he is, but he's in awe of Daphne's smarts even as he's scheming to devise ways to get into her skirts. And what's a chase across the Egyptian desert without lots of brawls, bad guys, sandstorms and getting lost in pyramids? It's the perfect place to escape to on a cold January night. I never get tired of reading about Egypt, especially this time of year, and I hope I never do.
I didn't love this quite as much as The Devil's Delilah but you can expect to see more Loretta Chase reviews here in the future. Also, a friend of mine gave me a whole slew of Egyptian-themed romances for my birthday last year so expect more of those too.