Take Me

Author: Lucy Monroe

Publisher: Berkley Sensation

Release Date: October 2006

Blue Ribbon Rating: 4.5

Format: PRINT

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Jared, Viscount Ravenswood, has been dubbed “Lord Beast” among most members of the ton.  He's large, imposing and quite visibly scarred.  Yet Mary, his dying housekeeper, entrusted Jared with that which was most precious to her - Hannah, her young daughter. Before Mary took her last breath, she made Jared promise to bring Hannah to meet her former employer, the widowed Calantha, Dowager Duchess of Clairborne.  Jared is one of the very few to know the terrible connection between Calantha's deceased husband and Hannah.  As far as Jared is concerned, Calantha failed miserably in her duty to protect Mary.  He can't understand why his housekeeper would want her daughter exposed to a woman like that.

To most of the ton, Calantha is an emotionless statue made of marble rather than flesh and blood.  She is often derisively called “The Angel”.  But, no one knows what Calantha endured in her marriage.  Although she has little more than her cherished roses to keep her company, she nevertheless finds her widowhood infinitely preferable to a life bound to the Duke of Clairborne.  Living alone in a small house, Calantha often yearns for children, but believes it is a wish that can never be fulfilled.


Because Jared’s honor demands that he fulfill Mary’s dying wish, he brings Hannah to meet Calantha.  He expects her to be cold and emotionless, but as his sisters seem to consider her a friend, maybe he’ll try to get to know her a little better.  She immediately adores Hannah and secretly wishes she were the sweet child’s mother, although she can’t help but feel guilty for what happened to Mary under her roof so many years before.


As they spend time with each other, Jared and Callie start to connect.  She begins to feel a spark of hope that there may be more to her future than roses and loneliness.  Then, someone goes to great lengths to make is appear as though Callie is trying to hurt or even kill Hannah.  Who could possibly do such a thing?  Will Jared believe that Callie is being set up?  Will anyone believe in her innocence?  Or is Callie doomed to a lifetime of loneliness and suspicion?


Where others look at Jared and see a beast, Callie views his scars as badges of honor.  Unfortunately, Jared isn’t as quick to give Callie the benefit of the doubt, even though he should know that appearances can be deceiving.  I hoped Jared would look beyond the emotionless statue most of the world sees and discover the true beauty of the flesh and blood woman before him.  I also hoped he would support her when she needed it most.  I wished Callie would find the happiness she so richly deserved with Jared and I hoped she wouldn’t have to give up the pure joy she experienced as Hannah’s new mother.  I loved the intrigue of trying to figure out who was responsible for framing Callie, too.  TAKE ME is an engrossing, thoroughly enjoyable tale from beginning to end and a superb conclusion to Lucy Monroe’s first historical trilogy.

By Romance Junkies Reviewer: Alane

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