Monday, May 4, 2015

RE-READ REVIEW: "Mr. Impossible" by Loretta Chase

Mr. Impossible (Carsington Brothers, #2)
Mr. Impossible by Loretta Chase
(Carsington #2)

For Ages 18+ (Language, Sensuality, Violence)
Historical Romance -- Regency Egypt

Berkley -- Published in 2005
Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Read in April 2015 (re-read)
Purchased from Borders

Opposites Attract, Brainy Heroine, Unique Setting

Rupert Carsington, fourth son of the Earl of Hargate, is his aristocratic family's favorite disaster. He is irresistibly handsome, shockingly masculine, and irretrievably reckless, and wherever he goes, trouble follows. Still, Rupert's never met an entanglement--emotional or other--he couldn't escape. Until now.

Now he's in Egypt, stranded in the depths of Cairo's most infamous prison, and his only way out is accepting a beautiful widow's dangerous proposal. Scholar Daphne Pembroke wants him to rescue her brother, who's been kidnapped by a rival seeking a fabled treasure. Their partnership is strictly business: She'll provide the brains, he, the brawn. Simple enough in theory.

Blame it on the sun or the blazing desert heat, but as tensions flare and inhibitions melt, the most disciplined of women and the most reckless of men are about to clash in the most impossibly irresistible way.

"Thanks to his mother, Rupert Carsington had hair and eyes as dark as any Egyptian's."

I first read Mr. Impossible years ago when I had just discovered historical romance and was quickly making my way through as many authors' backlists as I could find.  While it is not quite up to the level of Loretta Chase's most popular story (Lord of Scoundrels), this story was full of fun, love, and fascinating characters.

The book starts with Rupert, son of a British earl, getting arrested after defending an Egyptian peasant from soldiers and being placed in an Egyptian prison until the widowed Daphne Pembroke bails him out.  Daphne is on the hunt for her missing brother and requires Rupert's strength to balance out her brains.  This mission results in a dangerous adventure down the Nile River that forces these two very different people to figure out that they might be the one that the other has been looking for.

I absolutely adored Rupert!  He gives the impression of being a stupid brute, but is actually much smarter than he lets on.  His impulsiveness does tend to get him into trouble though his heart is always in the right place.  What I really loved was how attracted he was to Daphne's brain and the fact that he never felt threatened by her intellect like her late husband.
In the month and a half since the Earl of Hargate’s fourth son had arrived in Egypt, he had broken twenty-three separate laws and been jailed nine times. For what Mr. Carsington had cost the (England) consulate in fines and bribes, Mr. Salt (His Majesty's consul general) might have dismantled and shipped to England one of the smaller temples on the island of Philae.  He now knew exactly why Lord Hargate had sent his twenty-nine-year-old offspring to Egypt. It was not, as his lordship had written, “to assist the consul general in his services on behalf of the nation.”  It was to saddle someone else with the responsibility and expense.
And Daphne...well, she was the type of heroine that I love to read in historical romance.  She is genius-level smart, but was treated so horribly by her husband that she hides her brains from the world.  Besides her intelligence, Daphne shows how brave she is by dealing with the trials of hunting through Egyptian pyramids despite the fact that she has rarely left the city on her own.
Keeping the secret was going to be more difficult than Rupert could have foreseen. Every time she met a hieroglyph, she'd act like this: vibrating like a tuning fork, the gigantic brain bubbling over and spilling out its secrets: Greek and Latin and Coptic and names of scholars and who believed what and this alphabet versus that one and phonetic interpretations versus symbolic ones.
As a couple, Rupert and Daphne are just tons of fun.  They are complete opposites in their approaches to certain situations yet figure out a way to balance these reactions.  The relationship does take time to develop which I enjoyed since a lot of the book shows how Daphne and Rupert work as friends before love gets in the picture.  Besides the romance, readers of Mr. Impossible are treated to an action-filled plot that involves dastardly villains, intriguing side characters, and stunning details of the Egyptian countryside.

So I guess I'll end this review by saying how much fun I had reading about Daphne and Rupert's fascinating love story.  Loretta Chase excels at unique character development and tension-filled romance and Mr. Impossible is not exception.  And, even though it is the second in the Carsington Brothers series, it can easily be read as a stand-alone.


"Don't you remember telling me that you're the brain and I'm the brawn? Naturally I expect you to do all the talking. And naturally I shall knockheads and toss people out of windows as required. Or did I misunderstand? Did you want me to think, too?"

1. Miss Wonderful
2. Mr. Impossible
3. Lord Perfect
4. Not Quite a Lady
5. Last Night's Scandal

All About Romance
Smart Bitches, Trashy Books
Mrs. Giggles

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  1. Oh I do love this author...but I don't think I have read this one. I tried Miss Wonderful but couldn't get into it...but maybe I was in a reading slump at the time. But I would love to try this one after reading your thoughts on this one. I do love the complete opposites trope though...always makes for a fun read.

    1. I wasn't impressed with Miss Wonderful either so I think you should give this a try. Have you read Lord Perfect? That's my other favorite Carsington book. Thanks for commenting!

  2. I so, so, so need to check out Loretta Chase - especially Lord of Scoundrels! It was so much fun, first discovering the romance genre, wasn't it. I loved reading through so many author's backlist items. I miss that actually.

    Anyway, thanks for the review. I have another book I need to get to. The setting for this one sounds awesome!

  3. Acks. I've not read her yet. *hangs head* I'm loving that set up and the heroine sounds amazing!


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