A marriage begun in deception...
Feisty Julia Faircloth is used to managing the lives of her eccentric relatives, so when darkly dangerous Lord Sebastian Trevarre arrives in Bath and proposes to her shy sister Sarah, she switches places with the bride to save her from a shockingly carnal wedding night.
Against his better judgment, Sebastian consummates a marriage to the most provoking, appealing woman he's ever known, and then is forced to live with her in his neglected yet enchanting estate on the coast of Cornwall. Life there is turbulent, not least because Sebastian keeps many secrets. Will his reckless pursuits succeed in restoring his fortune...or cost him the lady who holds his heart?
Step back in time to magical 1798 Cornwall, England, with Julia and Sebastian - and reunite with Andre and Devon Raveneau, as Andre discovers that his life and Sebastian's are inextricably linked.
©2014 Cynthia Challed (P)2014 Cynthia Challed
So many books, so little time...
I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this story – in fact, I enjoyed it so much, I could have listened to it in one sitting if I hadn’t had other things to do! The descriptions of the Cornish landscape and villages are very evocative, the writing style is quite lyrical, and the story is well-paced. The author takes the time to establish her settings and characters, and to develop a strong story outside of the romance while also giving the romance prominence and the time to evolve in a way that felt organic and naturalistic. Sebastian and Julia have great chemistry, the love scenes are sensual without being overly explicit, (although the author does occasionally indulge in the odd bit of purplish prose!) and most importantly, we see them getting to know each other, falling in love and working together to build something – a home and a marriage. It’s not all plain sailing (!) as there are secrets and other obstacles to be overcome, but they don’t throw petulant tantrums or blame each other; refreshingly, they adapt and try to find a way to work things out. There is a dash of adventure in the latter part of the book, too, as Sebastian’s schemes come to threaten both their marriage and their lives.
Rosalyn Landor’s performance in terms of both characterisation and narrative is every bit as good as I’ve come to expect from her. Every character is distinctly and appropriately voiced and she employs a wide variety of English regional accents as well as authentic-sounding French and American ones, switching seamlessly between them all on numerous occasions. Sebastian and Viscount Senwick, appear in many scenes together, but are always easy to tell apart, and Ms Landor once again exercises her talent for portraying smarmy villains in the form of Mr Adolphus Lynton, a former suitor of Julia’s, who is now an Excise Officer determined to smash the local smuggling rings.
The female roles are all similarly well-differentiated and the narration is smooth, nuanced and beautifully delivered. Ms Landor’s considerable vocal range and her ability to find the emotional heart of the characters continue to impress, and I’d recommend Smuggler’s Moon to anyone who enjoys an historical romance with a spot of derring-do and high-seas adventure.
Exciting, Passionate, Enthralling.
What did I like best about this story, EVERYTHING! The characters were either lovable or detestable, their stories made you laugh and/or cry and the whole story line was captivating. Definitely a book that you can get fully engrossed in as are all the books that Cynthia writes.
Rosalyn has the smoothest reading voice I think I have ever heard, it was a pure delight listening to her read. More importantly though the voices she uses to portray the characters are perfect. From a very deep voiced man, to a young toddler, to a mewing cat. I had to remind myself that there was only one person narrating the book because the difference in each voice was unbelievably good. I hope she will work on more of Cynthia's books because she makes a great story even better.
I did want to listen to this in one sitting, but at the length of it, it was impossible to do. 3 sittings though and I managed it.
I am new to audio books, but if they are all as beautifully done as this one I will be a committed listener :D
"A Good One!"
I enjoyed listening to "Smuggler's Moon" which differed from the cookie cutter themes of books I have listened to lately. Historical romance has been my genre of choice for years, but lately it seems many authors follow similar themes, just making necessary changes from one book to another to keep from violating copyright laws. Especially when it comes to handsome, sexy, muscular Scots.
Although Lord Sebastian Trevarre is a tall, strong, handsome Englishman, he also has heart. While Sebastian is in the Royal Navy his brother gambles away their fortune and leaves England. Trying to recoup enough money to pay off the debt against the family's entailed leased land and buy back his horses, he gambles with Faircloth and wins his Estate, which Sebastian plans to sell. Upon learning of Faircloth's fatal accident and the plight of his family, Sebastian proposes to the younger shy sister Sarah, to provide the Faircloth family a place to live. Julia Faircloth, the eldest daughter, who runs the family will not let her sister sacrifice herself, so Julia switches places with Sarah and marries Sebastian instead. Discovering the deceit on his wedding night he is furious.....
"Smuggler's Moon" is well written, providing mental pictures of the characters and their surroundings without the overuse of words. I felt as if I was in Cornwall from the author's depiction of the area.
"Smuggler's Moon" is for a mature audience; with detailed sexual scenes.
Excellent narration by Rosalyn Landor.
"A New Hero to Love---and the Return of a Favorite"
Cynthia Wright is one of my most favorite historical romance writers, so when I saw she was writing a new series with a connection to the Raveneaus I was excited and have been eagerly anticipating its debut ever since. The main thing that sets this author's novels apart is her careful attention to historical detail and the enormous amount of research she does to be able to write in such a manner. Besides being an avid romance reader, I am also a history buff. I enjoy reading her novels that much more because of the meticulously crafted and vividly detailed settings, characters, and dialogue that she creates. It adds a whole other layer of realism and depth to her tales. Every time I read one I learn something new that fascinates me and I want to research further. These are most definately not your grandma's dime store novels.
But don't misunderstand me. Smuggler's Moon is not a dry history book like you had to read for your freshman world history class. It is a beautiful romance full of adventure, intrigue, humor, and a very healthy dose of steam.
The narrator of this story is fantastic. I don't know how one woman can slip so effortlessly between difference character's voices and dialects, but she does. Sometimes when a female attempts to affect a male tone it comes off sounding...well, rather odd. She does it with ease. And she doesn't just read the story, she PERFORMS it. Bravo to both author and narrator for weaving such an intricate tale.
The story opens in Bath as a retired bookseller's family is enjoying life on their newly inherited country estate. After years of pinching pennies and taking care of her eccentric family, Julia Faircloth is finally enjoying life. The only shadow over her days is her father's growing addiction to gambling. Stumbling upon his latest marker, Julia storms off to visit the odious man that would seem to be next in line to prey on her father's condition.
Instead of finding a slimy card sharp well past his prime, Julia stumbles in the front door of Sebastian Trevarre's home to be greeted by a dangerous yet devastatingly handsome young lord. She wants (and needs) to think of him as the revolting Lord Satan, the evil man who would take yet another slice of her father's quickly dwindling fortune, but to her dismay he brings about rather the opposite reaction from her traitorous body instead.
Lord Sebastian, recently an officer in the Royal Navy, returned home to find his brother had lost most of the family fortune at the gaming tables in Bath. In hopes of recovering some of the losses, he frequents the clubs to find those who took advantage of his brother. When the beautiful yet bossy Julia stormed into his house demanding release from the marker clutched in her delicate hand he refused because after all, no one had afforded his brother that courtesy. If he has any hope of recovering his property and retiring to the estate to breed horses, he needs every pound he can get--regardless of the cost to others.
As circumstances change, Julia's mother sees Lord Sebastian as the key to solving their financial problems and betroths the youngest Faircloth daughter to the rogue. More and more Julia is convinced that Sebastian is indeed very much Lord Satan, she is determined to save her naïve sister from a fate worse than death (having to consummate a marriage with that beast of a man). The only answer is to switches places and sacrifice herself to him instead.
As the story progresses and the deception is revealed, you can just imagine Sebastian's fury. They tricked him! But maybe marrying the fiesty, meddling Julia instead of her quiet, obedient sister is what he really longed for in the first place. If he can just keep the keen young woman that was now living with him at his Cornwall estate from figuring out his secret plans to recover his fortunate through reckless and illegal means, things just might be ok.
The secondary characters in this book are just as wonderful as the hero and heroine. You'll not come across many families more eccentric than Julia's and Sebastian has an estate full of useless servants that provide perpetual comic relief. I also fell in love with Sebastian's friend and neighbor, Tristan, a hero himself and likely to be featured later in the series.
Of course, the best part for me was the appearance of Andre and Devon Raveneau (the couple from SILVER STORM) in this novel. Andre Raveneau is dangerously delicious and my all-time favorite romance heros. This extra glimpse into his life as he is comfortably settled with his true love Devon is just icing on the cake. And to make things more interesting, there's a deep connection between Sebastian and his childhood idol Raveneau. Add in a mysterious eye ring and a dash of intrigue and you have another great read that will keep readers up late at night turning pages.
1798 Cornwall is almost a character itself given the depth of the author's descriptions. A reader feels completely immersed in the days where smuggling was a necessary means of survival for entire towns and finishes the book feeling as if they've traveled there without ever leaving the couch. I can't recommend this new novel---as well as all of the others written by Cynthia Wright--enough. It is definitely a 5-star read that will stay on the keeper shelf!
"So wonderfully entertaining and attention holding."
Yes, I would recommend this to everyone, it is so different listening then reading, I had read the book, listening made it a totally different story.
Julia, she was evolving, and falling in love and growing up all at the same time.
She brought each character to life, like watching a movie in your mind. Her narration is fantastic.
lots of them, it's so hard to name just one.
If you have never listened to an audio book you are really missing a wonderful way to experience a book, Cynthia Wright audible books are great books to listen to, she is a wonderful writer.
Julia was thrown into a problem when she found her father had gambled away everything her family owned and had the nerve to die. She was left to make all of the decision for the family. Sebastian had asked her sister to marry him for convenience sake, but Julia tricked him and took her place without him knowing it. Love soon brought them together. This story kept me wanting more. This was a great adventure and I loved it.
"I want more Julia and Sebastian"
No not necessarily better but adding a voice always brings another dimension to the characters.
The wedding night. I'm not giving it away so you will have to listen or read the book. Also Andre Raveneau, especially at the end of the story.
I like that she didn't try to make drastic changes to her voice for each character. She read it like anyone reading out loud to others would. There was just enough of a change for each character.
Judith made me laugh several times. She's so bossy but has never had anyone equal to her in attitude until Sebastian. She softens him, but not too much and he learns what loving acceptance is. I loved Andre Raveneau all the more at the end of this story.
This was a much enjoyed story to listen to as I did my daily errands. I will be adding more of Ms. Wrights books to my Audible account.
"Superbly Written and Narrated Romantic Tale"
Smuggler's Moon is easily one of the best audiobooks I've listened to. Rosalyn Landor's lively narration brings the book to life in a delightful way.
I loved the tender and sensuous love story, coupled with the wonderfully detailed and descriptive setting and the exciting supporting story.
I loved her expressive characterizations of each person in the story. It really brought the book alive!
Even better than an extreme reaction, this book made me care deeply about the characters, and left me with an overall interest to explore more about this time period and setting.
I highly recommend any of Cynthia Wright's fantastic novels, in any format. I look forward to exploring other books with Ms. Landor's narration.
"Engaging and entertaining"
It's cliche, but I like stories where the couple can't stand each other in the beginning. I enjoy the banter and their futile attempts to check their passions.
The added danger of smuggling in this story made it more interesting. The historic background, travel and descriptions of the landscape were also a plus. Some of the characters seem hastily written but as they weren't central, that's easily overlooked.
The narration was good. The male characters came across masculine but could have used a little more distinction. The American accent for Devan was spot on!
Once started I couldn't stop listening. Completed in two sittings.
"Lovely historical quest of love, life & redemption"
Yes, with its lovely historical background of Cornwall and a bit of Bath, and how smuggling was a revolutionary act of survival against the Kings taxes. I enjoyed the journey of redemption in life, how love can come to us if we let it, stubborn Libertines and headstrong ladies, I would find this enjoyable to listen to again.
I encourage others to purchase and enjoy Smuggler's Moon.
There are many historically based books about smuggling and pirating, the up and down sides of this life choice, however, right now I may compare it to "Sliver Storm" there are familial ties in family, shipping, standing against governmental tyranny as well as love coming to fruition aboard a ship at sea. Women who are strong and independent, standing for what they believe against headstrong, stubborn and wary men.
I enjoyed listening to Rosalyn Landor. Her accent fitting the characters and country, she has a nice voice, not grating like some and reads rather smoothly; that is important. She moved smoothly between characters and scenes, adding to the voice emotively very well. Sometimes I find myself avoiding a book or having trouble listening to a book because it sounds too mechanical or abrasive, not sure how to explain it.
Yes, Andre's own night time reflection and then conversation with Devon on the discovery that Sebastian is Andre's son were all poignant moments, but I would have to say that the conversation on parentage between Andre and Sebastian was quite moving and seemed healing for both of them.
I think I would have like a bit more of an Epilogue, a bit more wind up to the story, I know that Sebastian and Julia planned to re-marry, but maybe a bit of a wrap up of, possible children, how some of the other family members progress; there were hints of such things, I just felt the need for a little more meat to that part.
Beautifully narrated novel written by an amazingly talented writer!!
The narrator comes off as a but haughty at first, but as the story progresses she does a smooth beautiful job with the individual characters and their varying accents & genders, adding inflection and personality.
"Funny, passionate great story telling"
What pursuit is worse? Gambling to excess or smuggling? Gambling to excess is not criminal. However, smuggling is. Are there circumstances where smuggling could be morally acceptable – where the gains justifies the means? Come ponder this dilemma in book 5 of The Rakes and Rebels Series by Cynthia WrightIf George Faircloth had not inherited Turbans and considerable funds from his cousin, he most likely would not have started gambling and would remain in London working in a library. But, as with many addictions, one finds the allure irresitable. George very happily took this course, knowing he shouldn’t, but felt his luck would change when it did not. His demise was another’s luck.Lord Sebastian Trevarre won much from George Faircloth. He needed money desperately, for all his family’s money and property had been gamed away by his brother and he was determined to win it back. He won Turban, George’s home, but this home was the only home that Julia, Sarah, and Freddy had.The three siblings cooked up a plan (this is where it gets ridiculously funny) to make Lord Sebastian feel so bad about winning the home that he would gift it back to them. But Lord Sebastian had come up with another idea. He had to marry at any rate, so he would marry the lovely Sarah, the quiet beauty of the Faircloth family, who would easily fit into his life – not demanding anything from him, that is, a marriage of convenience. The rub is she is in love with Charles Wimple, a simple man who writes her poetry.When the first cooked up plan didn’t work, Julia came up with another, a young woman of great imagination and creative solutions! This one had me chortling through the telling. The situation only gets funnier and funnier. Lord Sebastian, aka, Lord Satan, is ready to blow a fuse about the demureness of his new bride who can’t show her face. The excuse was a pimple on the tip of her nose. Sarah is such a beauty, quiet, and a woman he could easily live with and not love. Oh, destiny and the machinations of Julia create lots of silly situations, but eventually all comes to passion and love.Narrator Rosalyn Landor is absolutely fantastic in the telling. Her portrayals of all the fully-fleshed and lovable characters were spot on. From Lord Sebastian’s gruff and explosive personality to his man-servant’s bored demeanor and dealings with Sebastian, to Polly, widow of George, to Julia with her high-spirited plans and daring ideas. The diversity and timbre of the voices were remarkable.Conscience ridden and married to Miss Faircloth, Lord Sebastian’s first attempt of gaming and winning Turban (to resell) didn’t succeed. A new option came to him while in Cornwall. Some would think it worse than gambling. He decided to smuggle. His reasons were two-fold–to gain enough money to buy back property which was once his families and the second was to help the folk in Cornwall who needed salt to preserve fish feeding them through the winter.Funny, passionate, and terrifically great story telling. Ms. Wright has written ten books in the Rakes and Rebels, this being book 5. I enjoyed how she wove the Raveneau family into the story with an extra twist of fate.
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