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An Honorable Thief [Paperback]

Anne Gracie
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Book by Gracie, Anne

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Unexpected story from a great writer Sept. 1 2002
Format:Paperback
The thing I like most about Anne Gracie as an author is that she takes the romance genre by the neck and manages to shake out a great story that conforms to all the things I love about romances - but does it in a marvellously unexpected way. This is a satisfying and romantic story but just when you think you have sussed it all out, there is a quite unexpected twist - this happens more than once during the story -
We meet Kit Singleton, newly arrived in London for the season in 1816 - an heiress of some standing. At the same time there is a burglar sneaking into the houses of the wealthy - and Hugo Devenish meets this burglar unexpectedly. Unexpected on both sides when he is knocked down by this slight fellow - who sounded perculiarly Chinese.
Hugo suspects Miss Singleton is the key to the mystery and can't explain why. Miss Singleton isn't helping him, she has a sacred pact - vengeance she has sworn in her father's honour on his death-bed. There are no easy resolutions in this book but the action never seems contrived simply as plot devices.
The only quibble I have with Gracie's latest work is that the slang doesn't feel as Regency as it ought to and there are characters that seem more Victorian than Georgian - such as Sir William Marsden. I would have given this book 5 stars if it had been set in a Victorian setting for that reason. However one thing Gracie doesn't let us down on is a great story and that is definitely the most important thing!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Keeper for Regency fans! July 3 2002
By KA
Format:Paperback
London has two sensations in the season of 1816: A Chinese burglar and a diamond heiress, both new in town, neither of who want to be caught. The heiress is a spirited young woman who returns to England to restore her family's honour. Playing the social game, Kit Singleton, with her unconventional ideas and manners befriends and rescues damsels in distress and sparks the interest of one Hugo Devenish. He's a strong, tall and dark man, a man that a woman could easily fall in love with - but he's also a man looking for the thief.
I love romance novels with thieves and mistaken identities and I love my heroines daring, unique and on the wild side. Add to that some costly artefacts, jewels and a hero that is brooding, rich and unpretentious with no regard for society's strictures and you have a mix that I find irresistible.
The story is more complex than expected, surprising me with twists and turns without ever getting lost in them. I immensely enjoyed Ms. Gracie's style, not just for a story well told but for her choice of words that had me re-reading whole scenes just for the pleasure of it. It's never cute but witty, never pretentious but always vivid.
This is a true find and definitely a keeper especially for regency fans.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and well-crafted June 28 2002
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I read this book after having read Tallie’s Knight and Gallant Waif and found this as delightful as the others.
Kit Singleton arrives in London after a life spent in foreign parts with her father. She is charged with a mission to fulfill a deathbed promise she made to him. At the same time Hugo Devenish meets her and becomes curious about her past.
Anne Gracie skilfully weaves a quite complex story against the background of life amongst the ton of London. Kit and Hugo are unusual characters in this setting; both loners without normal family relationships who seem to swan in and out of society functions without really belonging. They are drawn together and I love the way Hugo is captivated by Kit without consciously recognising it. In my opinion an almost perfect hero. The side characters are well-drawn with lives of their own that add depth to the story.
Gracie’s writing style helps make her work so appealing to me. She uses unusually short sentences, a kind of mental shorthand, when she is depicting Hugo’s point of view, for example. Humour lurks in the background of every scene. I love her descriptive use of words - "watchdoggery" and "Sir Primrose", for example.
All in all a treat which I have already read twice.
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2.0 out of 5 stars I just don't get it! April 23 2004
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This book was purchased mostly because of very good reveiews at other sites as well as this one. I just don't get it! The story is so beyond belief and more than a little dramatic regarding the upbringing of the heroine by a father who is useless and over the top when it comes to his daughter's well being. The tale of the h/h first meeting is outright silly and the sudden reality of a love for all time is outlandish.
To say this author was a disappointment is understated. Unreal is the only thing that comes to mind.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  13 reviews
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Keeper for Regency fans! July 3 2002
By KA - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
London has two sensations in the season of 1816: A Chinese burglar and a diamond heiress, both new in town, neither of who want to be caught. The heiress is a spirited young woman who returns to England to restore her family's honour. Playing the social game, Kit Singleton, with her unconventional ideas and manners befriends and rescues damsels in distress and sparks the interest of one Hugo Devenish. He's a strong, tall and dark man, a man that a woman could easily fall in love with - but he's also a man looking for the thief.
I love romance novels with thieves and mistaken identities and I love my heroines daring, unique and on the wild side. Add to that some costly artefacts, jewels and a hero that is brooding, rich and unpretentious with no regard for society's strictures and you have a mix that I find irresistible.
The story is more complex than expected, surprising me with twists and turns without ever getting lost in them. I immensely enjoyed Ms. Gracie's style, not just for a story well told but for her choice of words that had me re-reading whole scenes just for the pleasure of it. It's never cute but witty, never pretentious but always vivid.
This is a true find and definitely a keeper especially for regency fans.
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and well-crafted June 28 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I read this book after having read Tallie’s Knight and Gallant Waif and found this as delightful as the others.
Kit Singleton arrives in London after a life spent in foreign parts with her father. She is charged with a mission to fulfill a deathbed promise she made to him. At the same time Hugo Devenish meets her and becomes curious about her past.
Anne Gracie skilfully weaves a quite complex story against the background of life amongst the ton of London. Kit and Hugo are unusual characters in this setting; both loners without normal family relationships who seem to swan in and out of society functions without really belonging. They are drawn together and I love the way Hugo is captivated by Kit without consciously recognising it. In my opinion an almost perfect hero. The side characters are well-drawn with lives of their own that add depth to the story.
Gracie’s writing style helps make her work so appealing to me. She uses unusually short sentences, a kind of mental shorthand, when she is depicting Hugo’s point of view, for example. Humour lurks in the background of every scene. I love her descriptive use of words - "watchdoggery" and "Sir Primrose", for example.
All in all a treat which I have already read twice.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great chemistry June 7 2008
By D. K. Stokes - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
A friend gave me this one after I was wowed by a previous book of Anne Gracie's.

Kit Smith has just buried her father. But before he died, he extracted a promise from her that she'd go to London and restore his honor. As part of his plan, she's posing as Kit Singleton, niece of the very respectable Rose Singleton.

Hugo Devenish's role in London is twofold: to straighten up his family's affairs and to apprehend the Chinese burglar who's been preying on the gentry. When his nephew and heir announces his plans to marry Miss Singleton, heiress to a diamond mine in New South Wales, of all places, Hugo decides he must investigate Miss Singleton.

And of course, we can all guess what happens then.

In some ways, An Honorable Thief is a fairly predictable Regency romance--that Kit herself is the thief, that she'll discover the deception behind the premise she's been operating under, that she and Hugo will fall in love, and that he will catch her in the act.

But there's more to it than that, and I didn't see the biggest twist of the book coming at all.

Then, too, there's wonderful chemistry between Kit and Hugo. They're attracted to each other's personality and intelligence as well as appearance, though trust is, unsurprisingly, an issue between the two of them. I did get impatient for Kit to spill the beans to Hugo a smidgen sooner than she actually did it, but she didn't keep me waiting too long, and I didn't get too terribly irritated with her.

I believe I have 3 or 4 more Anne Gracie books in my TBR pile. I'm looking forward to them.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unexpected story from a great writer Sept. 1 2002
By A. Woodley - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
The thing I like most about Anne Gracie as an author is that she takes the romance genre by the neck and manages to shake out a great story that conforms to all the things I love about romances - but does it in a marvellously unexpected way. This is a satisfying and romantic story but just when you think you have sussed it all out, there is a quite unexpected twist - this happens more than once during the story -
We meet Kit Singleton, newly arrived in London for the season in 1816 - an heiress of some standing. At the same time there is a burglar sneaking into the houses of the wealthy - and Hugo Devenish meets this burglar unexpectedly. Unexpected on both sides when he is knocked down by this slight fellow - who sounded perculiarly Chinese.
Hugo suspects Miss Singleton is the key to the mystery and can't explain why. Miss Singleton isn't helping him, she has a sacred pact - vengeance she has sworn in her father's honour on his death-bed. There are no easy resolutions in this book but the action never seems contrived simply as plot devices.
The only quibble I have with Gracie's latest work is that the slang doesn't feel as Regency as it ought to and there are characters that seem more Victorian than Georgian - such as Sir William Marsden. I would have given this book 5 stars if it had been set in a Victorian setting for that reason. However one thing Gracie doesn't let us down on is a great story and that is definitely the most important thing!
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable regency romance Sept. 12 2006
By Gemma - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
From the back cover:

To catch a thief...

The dashing Mr. Hugo Devenish had come to London on an important mission: to prevent his innocent nephew from marrying an unsuitable young heiress. He'd never expected to be trounced upon by the most infamous thief in town!

All society was agog at the rash of burglaries being committed by the mysterious Chinaman, but Hugo's attention was diverted once he was introduced to his nephew's heiress, the intriguing Miss Kit Singleton. Hugo found himself utterly enchanted. But her dubious background gave rise to the suspicion that Miss Singleton was somehow connected to the notorious thief. And Hugo could only hope to uncover Kit's many secrets, before the winsome beauty managed to steal his heart!

And my review:

Anne Gracie is one of Harlequin's best authors. She's so good, in fact, that she's now moved into full-length historical romance, and AN HONORABLE THIEF is an excellent example of why she belongs there.

Her characters are delightful, and always well-rounded, until they are real people that you feel you know. And not just the hero and heroine, either. The secondary characters (like Maggie, Kit's maid, or Kit's aunt Rose) will also steal your heart. I especially loved Kit, the heroine. She was wonderfully spirited without being shrewish. I loved how she put a stop to a lecherous old man's advances by "accidentally" kicking him in the shin and trodding on his toes during a dance. All done with a smile and apologies, of course. I was laughing out loud at that scene.

Even in the confined page count of catagory romance, Gracie has managed to create a complete story that never feels rushed. Often, Harlequin books will be well developed until the last 50 pages, where the author will try to squash the rest of her story in. That wasn't the case here. The pacing of the story was well done and enjoyable throughought the story.

I hardly ever read Harlequin romance anymore, since the majority of these books are so unsatifying. Anne Gracie's books are one of the few exceptions. Her stories are so good that they are always worth the read. I would certainly recommend AN HONORABLE THIEF. I also recommend THE VIRTUOUS WIDOW, a Christmas novella written by the same author, found in Harlequin's GIFTS OF THE SEASON anthology.
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