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Emily and the Dark Angel [Paperback]

Jo Beverley
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

June 1992 Regency Romance
Practical, capable, and utterly unromantic, Emily is spinsterhood personified. But her prim world tilts when the handsome, notorious rake Piers Verderan crosses her path. Emily wants to resist Verderan's attentions, but heart chooses love. HC: Walker.

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About the Author

Jo Beverley is widely regarded as one of the most talented romance writers today. She is a four-time winner of Romance Writers of America's cherished RITA Award and one of only a handful of members in the RITA Hall of Fame. She has also recieved the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award. Born in England, she now lives with her husband and two sons in Victoria, British Columbia, just a ferry ride away from Seattle, WA.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
Emily and the Dark Angel is one of Jo Beverley's earliest books, and is part of a series which began with Lord Wraybourne's Betrothal, and continued with The Stanforth Secret and The Stolen Bride. Not knowing that these books were linked, I read Emily... before Stanforth; I hope that by listing the order here other readers may be helped. (And I hope that some day I can find a copy of The Stolen Bride; I want to read Randal and Sophie's story!)
Emily is a spinster, in her late twenties, who has been looking after her invalid father for many years. Since her soldier brother was posted as missing, believed killed in combat, she has also been running the family estate. Her home is on the edge of Melton Mowbray, a very popular area with the hunting fraternity, situated as it is in the centre of several hunts. (This is the one thing I dislike about the book: I loathe foxhunting).
Piers Verderan, known as Ver to his friends, is there for the hunting, and because he's just inherited the estate next to Emily's. They meet first just as he's been ejected from his (ex-)mistress's establishment, colliding with Emily just as they're both showered in poudre des violettes. Ver offers to escort Emily to her destination, since the collision has damaged the heel of her boot.
She doesn't trust him; and why should she? He's called the Dark Angel for a reason; he is likened to Lucifer. Stories about his criminality and dastardliness abound. And yet he is kind, he comes to her rescue on several occasions, and he makes her feel good about herself for the first time in many years. He makes her feel desirable. He tells her that he loves her.
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Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  22 reviews
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Even early Beverleys have wonderful characters and stories! Feb. 16 2002
By Dr W. Richards - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Emily and the Dark Angel is one of Jo Beverley's earliest books, and is part of a series which began with Lord Wraybourne's Betrothal, and continued with The Stanforth Secret and The Stolen Bride. Not knowing that these books were linked, I read Emily... before Stanforth; I hope that by listing the order here other readers may be helped. (And I hope that some day I can find a copy of The Stolen Bride; I want to read Randal and Sophie's story!)
Emily is a spinster, in her late twenties, who has been looking after her invalid father for many years. Since her soldier brother was posted as missing, believed killed in combat, she has also been running the family estate. Her home is on the edge of Melton Mowbray, a very popular area with the hunting fraternity, situated as it is in the centre of several hunts. (This is the one thing I dislike about the book: I loathe foxhunting).
Piers Verderan, known as Ver to his friends, is there for the hunting, and because he's just inherited the estate next to Emily's. They meet first just as he's been ejected from his (ex-)mistress's establishment, colliding with Emily just as they're both showered in poudre des violettes. Ver offers to escort Emily to her destination, since the collision has damaged the heel of her boot.
She doesn't trust him; and why should she? He's called the Dark Angel for a reason; he is likened to Lucifer. Stories about his criminality and dastardliness abound. And yet he is kind, he comes to her rescue on several occasions, and he makes her feel good about herself for the first time in many years. He makes her feel desirable. He tells her that he loves her.
But can Emily believe a man who has a reputation for breaking hearts and never remaining faithful to a woman; a man who is reputed to have abandoned his own mother to a life of poverty? Can she be brave enough to listen to her heart above the warnings of her brain and members of her family?
Emily and Ver are hugely likeable characters, both with enough emotional depth to hold my interest. There are also some great secondary characters, including some I really want to read about: Lord Randal Ashby appears in this book, with his wife Sophie (and I want to read their story!), and Emily's brother Marcus looks as if he could benefit from a book of his own. Note to self: check if Beverley ever did write Marcus's story...
Highly recommended, if you can get hold of it!
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best regency I have ever read! Nov. 29 1999
By D. Kamps - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
No exaggeration: this book is absolutely my favorite regency. I have read hundreds of regencies and this one does it right.
The characters are awesome. In fact, the strength of book rests in the characters. The plot (at first glance) doesn't seem to have anything happen. And that's the beauty of it: this book is realistic and still magical.
The forerunners of this book, "Lord Wraybourne's Betrothed" and "Stolen Bride" (though very good themselves) are mere shadows compared to "Emily...." In addition, spin-offs "The Fortune Hunter" and "Deidre and Don Juan" cannot hold a candle to this one.
As you can tell, I love this one. If you find it, hold on to it. This is the best regency written to date that I have found!
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very well crafted Regency March 5 2005
By a-wish-upon-a-star - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I have only read a few Jo Beverley's so far, but when I found this out of print and hard to find regency at the paperback section of the library, I could not resist.

As always for this author, this is a novel that is very well done. The tone is very serious, as is also usual for Ms. Beverley, and her book is well-written, and well plotted, with very real-like characters - in short, a top-notch Regency. But, make no mistake - this is a true Regency, so that if you dislike the Regency format, you may not find this novel much to you liking either.

Emily is on the way home from a business transaction of buying a flock of sheep (in proxy for her father, because he is paralyzed as a result of an ill-advised duel), when she meets up with her "dark angel" - - who is on the way home from his paramour's house. She actually gets to witness a volatile "good-bye" scene between x and his mistress - and gets caught in the melee against her will. He courteously walks her home against her protests - and against her better judgment. The more she finds out about this "dark angel" the more she realizes that this is a person she would be best off having nothing to do with - but there is a part of her that can't help thinking about him - and can't help wondering - is he as black as he's painted? The simple answer does seem to be yes.

Ms. Beverley has taken a rather common-place plot - the innocent and the rake (hence the title Emily and the Dark Angel), and in this book, she has given it a new face. There are not too many ways to reform a rake - one of the easiest and the path most traveled is that he wasn't much of a rake to begin with. But in this story, we are assured that our hero is very much a rake - possibly a villain, even. Yes, he's every bit as black as he's painted, and Emily is every bit as innocent as she seems - but is black black? Is what society perceives as black really black? Or perhaps black is really white... and in Ms. Beverley's capable hands, it does seem that way...

I happen to particularly love a story about someone who does the right thing, yet in an unconventional way, and in a way that is censored by society. I also like a book about someone who was hurt, and uses that as a springboard to develop a passion for justice, for right and wrong - another element of this story.

On the other hand, much of this story centers around hunting - this is set in Devonshire in the hunting season, and hunting is indeed very much part of the story. I have never come in contact with any aspect English hunting, I don't particularly have any interest in hunting, and if I were to see it up close I would probably have even less interest. I understand that the English do have a passion for hunting - but I am the reader, and I found that part of the story not interesting for me.

I also found Emily's innocence a little much - while this is very realistic for that time period, and this does make for some very funny scenes ("pudding" comes to mind), Emily does tend to come across a little of the fool - and I like my heroines to have at least an equal footing in a relationsip.

But of course, this is still a Jo Beverley, and everything you would expect from this author is in this novel. As usual, this is a complicated story, and there is a lot going on, each page is well filled. Her usual brilliance of plot is here, as well. And although I personally don't think that she is the most outstanding writer ever, many parts of this book are very well written. In short, this is an enjoyable novel, and is exactly what you might expect from Jo Beverley, in a Regency format.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Incomplete July 18 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book has been out of print for quite a while and seems to sell for quite a lot now. I was very glad to have a chance to read it, if it reaches theses prices must be good, right? Not quite.
The concept is intriguing and so is the "Dark Angel" but the novel is just too short to do justice to the story. I was reaching the end of the novel, and I kept thinking I must have skipped some chapters, some scenes because we are told Vers fell in love with Emily, but quite frankly I still got no idea why. She is nice, and supposed to be witty and intelligent, but in their conversations it never seems like she is his match. So while this type of romance sounds fascinating, this novel falls short.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A truely delightful book Oct. 23 2001
By Jenn - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Emily is a twenty-six year old spinster "past her last prayers" who keeps the house and property for a cranky and crippled father and hopeds for the return of her brother from the war. Then she bumps into Piers Verderan, the "Dark Angel" from Beverly's THE STOLEN BRIDE. He's "mad, bad, and dangerous to know." She's good, respectable, and quitetly opinionated. Together under the influence of violet power and sago pudding, she tries to coax him into respecabilty, and he tries to talk her into walking on the wild side. In the end, he leaves it up to her to take a chance and to do something out of the ordinary. The letter he writes her is one of the most tender and beautiful I've ever read. This is a romatic, funny, wonderful book, and everyone should read it.
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