“Hellion in her Bed” is the second book in Sabrina Jeffries new Hellions of Halstead Hall series. From the moment I picked up the novel until I put down after finishing it, I thought that “Hellion in her Bed” had one of the most intriguing plot elements I’d read in a regency-era romance in a while.
By-blows, or illegitimate children, are not uncommon in historical novels. If anything having a child out of wedlock is reserved for the lead male (as seen in Eloisa James’ “A Duke of Her Own”) or a minor character. Admittedly, Elizabeth Hoyt’s “To Beguile a Beast” features a heroine with two illegitimate children, but there was no need for subterfuge due to her status as a well-known mistress.
In Hellion, Annabel Lake must watch her son be raised by her brother and sister-in-law while she is merely his aunt. Jeffries is able to show the reader Annabel’s pain as she assists the raising of her son from afar. The pain is sharp and painful and real. Her secret is actually an adequate as a conflict to keep Annabel and Jarret apart.
Lord Jarret Sharpe is the typical carefree rake with commitment issues found in 95% of all romances. He has his reasons for building a wall around his heart, but don’t they all? He is likable and exudes sex appeal off the pages, but that still makes Jarret feel uninteresting in his commonality. Even his friend Giles Masters seemed a bit more interesting than he was at times.
No matter its small problems, Sabrina Jeffries’ writing in “Hellion in Her Bed” sparkles with humor and emotion. The book has an interesting premise and a realistic, sympathetic heroine. With such good writing, those two things are enough to make the book worth buying.