Friday, December 3, 2010

The Widow - Anne Stuart

Determined to put the past behind her and to vanguish the evil that still lurks at the Tuscan villa she once lived in with her cruel husband, renowned artist Aristide Pompasse, Charlie finds herself drawn to Connor Maguire, a reporter who will do anything to discover the truth her husband's murder.

I make no secret of the fact that Anne Stuart is one of my favourite authors, I have loved some books more than others, her older stories better than her recent ones but I usually always find something to enjoy in everyone of them. I still have a lot of work to do if I want to catch up with all her back list so occasionally delve into my TBR pile and see what I have there. This time it was The Widow.

The widow is Charlie, the ex-wife of famous French painter Aristide Pompasse who has just been found murdered. She is the executor of his will and so she must go back to his Tuscan Villa, where several of his mistresses reside, to settle things. There she also finds Connor Maguire, a tabloid reporter pretending to be and insurance consultant, who suspects her to be the murderer and is trying to find Charlie and Pompasse's eventual dirty secrets.

There's an attraction between Charlie and Connor from the beginning. He is the usual bad boy, decided not to get involved and she seemed actually like a nice girl despite an uncommon childhood that led her to the arms of someone 40 something years older than her and a less than healthy relationship. Unfortunately I did not find Connor as alluring as other Stuart imperfect heroes, he does get better as the book develops but he starts by being a really nasty piece of work.

Regarding the suspense of where Pompasse’s last works were and who is trying to hurt Charlie although the conclusion was a surprise I didn't feel there was enough build up to make a successful romantic suspense climax. Still, it is an entertaining read if not an exceptional one.

Grade: 3.5/5

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