To Kiss a Thief by Susanna Craig (Runaway Desires #1)
Released: August 16, 2016
Kensington Lyrical Press
Reviewed by Mandi
The beginning of this one held promise – so much intense, growly, promise – but it ended up falling quite flat for me.
Sarah Sutliffe, Lady Fairfax is newly married (oh how I do love a marriage in trouble trope) to St. John, Viscount Fairfax and when she overhears her husband and another woman profess love for one another, she has a freak-out session. She ends up drinking too much wine and another man at the party, helps her loosen her dress (as she is having a panic attack) and they are caught in this position. Oopsie. Worse, a very expensive and meaningful sapphire necklace she had around her neck, is no longer there. Where are the jewels? Everyone suspects Sarah.
Fast forward three years later, you learn Sarah left that night with the help of St. John’s stepmother, and ends up in a town a few hours away. However, St. John is told she drown in a river. He fled to another country after a duel (to the man who helped Sarah loosen her dress) and worked but is now back in London. St. John finds a secret letter in his stepmother’s desk that clues him into the fact that Sarah is very much still alive. He races to the village town to find her – and demand the jewels back! Let me stop and say – Sarah is very wealthy, the reason St. John married her – for her dowry, so why would she need to steal jewels? I don’t know.
Anyway, he finds her and I wanted him to be pissed and growly and demand things from her. Instead, not a lot happens. They pitter-patter around the town for a while. And then he realizes she is more mature, and she realizes he is more mature and he thinks about wooing her – but then eventually he threatens her with something, forcing her to move back to London with him.
Far into the book, past the halfway mark, he still thinks Sarah is a liar. I got tired of that. If St. John wanted to think she was a liar fine, but I needed him to be more intense. My biggest frustration is – why did St. John race to find Sarah when he found out she was alive? They were married for two weeks. They didn’t like each other. I don’t get it. Just to prove she is a liar? To claim his wife? I wanted passion between them. For him to drop everything and demand his wife back, his demeanor was just ho-hum. I needed more fiery emotions from him.
The second half is really slow and through it all their HEA came too fast at the end.