I really am no fan of novellas. I like to stay with the characters for a while. I am a fast reader and novellas can hardly hold my attention for more than an hour. This usually means a mediocre reading experience and rating.
I think The Ice Princess is the only novella I have read so far which I rated above 3 stars.
So many othes have said it: Elizabeth Hoyt is one talented writer. I really think so. I admire such writers, how they weave a compelling story. Most admirable. Hoyt picked Coral, a "very experienced" courtesan for her heroine and paired her with a puritanical naval captain Issac Wargate. I have read other courtesan novels and usually have trouble liking the heroines, no matter how the writers attempt to "clean up" the courtesan past. Hoyt did not try to erase the fact that Coral was a prostitue or "beautify" the ugliness often associated with the trade of human flesh. Interestingly this is what endeared Coral to me. I respected her.
Captain Wargate is a dream come true. I don't know whethere there are men out there like him but since we are talking fictions, I will leave that be. I think Wargate is perfect for Coral.
But my reservation about novellas remains. I think the relationship would have benefitted from a longer association where Issac and Coral were allowed the time to develop deep feelings for each other. To profess love so prematurely......I am by nature a cynic and really winced when I read about how quickly Issac decided that he would marry Coral. The story wrapped up all too quickly and perfectly. But maybe it is because Hoyt did not have enough materials for the couple to turn it into a full-length novel, which would habe been a wise decision if it was so. All in all, I imagine some regrets for the couple could not be avoided. Either the readers are left feeling wanting or the story gets stretched too thin and loses its original appeal.
All in all, very enjoyable read. Ms. Hoyt, I am still a loyal fan.