To Catch an Earl by Kate Bateman
Bow Street Bachelors #2
St Martin’s Press | June 30, 2020
About the Book:
A case of secret identities finds reunited lovers on opposite sides of the law in this fun, flirty Regency romance.
There’s only one case Bow Street agent Alex Harland, Earl of Melton, hasn’t cracked: the identity of the mysterious woman who stole a kiss from him before he left for war. He’s neither forgotten–nor forgiven–her for leaving him wanting. When he starts investigating the Nightjar, an elusive London jewel thief, he keeps running into the alluring Emmy Danvers, who stirs feelings he hasn’t felt in years.
Even though Emmy’s loved Alex for years, she can’t risk revealing her heart, or her identity as the Nightjar. With Alex on her case, Emmy knows that her secrets are in danger of being discovered. Their cat and mouse game heats up with every interaction, but when Emmy’s reputation–and life–is at risk, will Alex realize that some rules are made to be broken for love?
I’m going to be upfront here. I couldn’t finish this book. I made it about halfway through, then skimmed my way through another quarter before completely giving up. I wanted to love it. The author is a very talented wordsmith. The story itself, the construction of it, is what fell flat for me.
The motivations of the characters are told.
They aren’t shown.
We’re told why The Nightjar steals, but we don’t see the passion or conviction for the cause until *way* too late. The main romantic pair fall into an obsession based on one meeting, one kiss at a masked ball. But, again, it’s told, not shown through the characters themselves. So, when the story jumps ahead in time, I had a difficult time buying that he would know her by her scent alone.
But the biggest issue I had is a total loss of interest. Not even a quarter into the book, most of the potential suspense was gone. Everyone knows who everyone is, why they’re doing the thieving or the investigating.
The story didn’t engage me.
Whenever anything happened, I found I really didn’t care.
I will say – I’d totally read a book about Camille (Emmy’s totally badass grandmother). *That* woman has a backstory I’d love to hear.