The Gentleman Thief, by Deborah Simmons

>> Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Next, I reread The Gentleman Thief, by Deborah Simmons. I adored this book when I first read it last year, so I lent it to my friend. She hated it. Really, really hated it. Hated Georgiana, hated the plot, everything. I decided to reread this, then, to see if I felt any differently about it.

Why her family had elected to spend an entire season in boring Bath, Georgiana Bellewether couldn't fathom. Nothing to stimulate her inquisitive mind ever happened here -until the night Lady Culpepper's emeralds were stolen! Now, if only she could keep her mind on the case and her hands off the enigmatic man in black - the beguiling Lord Ashdowne...!

As the newly made, ever-responsible Marquis of Ashdowne, Johnathon Saxton bemoaned the lack of excitement now marking his days. But when quixotic, exotic Georgiana Bellewether literally stumbled into his arms, he knew he'd caught himself an armful. The woman was a disaster in the making!

Well, I still loved it. An A. It was one of the funniest books I've ever read, and one of the most refreshing.

Georgiana was an excellent character. She reminded me a bit of Phoebe, from SEP's It Had to be You, in that they were both brilliant women who looked like ditzy sexbombs. Georgiana, however, actually was a bit ditzy. Ditzy and brilliant, I didn't think someone could write that successfully.

The main focus of the book was Georgiana and Ashdowne's relationship, which was a riot. I loved the way Ashdowne started realizing that she wasn't exactly what she seemed. I LOLed at his horror when he noticed her thought processes were beginning to make sense to him. ;-)

This was a very sensual book. There actually was only one real sex scene, and it wasn't too graphic, but Simmons succeeded in creating beautiful sensual tension. And that scene in the Baths, whew!! *fanning myself*

I remember I was a bit doubtful about buying this book at first because of the thief angle. Thief protagonists are usually a turn-off for me. Maybe I'm a bit rigid, but stealing because you need the excitement, even if it's from "nasty people who can afford it", is wrong, IMHO. Yeah, I know, it's fiction, but I usually can't get over this. Stealing because of desperation, or for revenge, or for a million other reasons, I can accept easily. But frivolous, irresponsible reasons make me want to shake that particular character. I can't figure out why it wasn't a real problem here. Maybe because it was only part of Ashdowne's past? Because we never actually saw him stealing? Because Georgiana didn't condone it? Probably a mix of the three.

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