“Twice as Wicked” is the debut novel by historical romance writer, Elizabeth Bright. I have to tell you, I am always a bit apprehensive about reading debut novels but this cover drew me in, and I HAD to read it. Imagine my happy surprise when the book turned out to be better than the cover! This is an excellent and satisfying historical with a great plot and complex characters.
Alice Bursnell is mourning the death of her twin sister who died in childbirth. The only clue she has to the father of the child who left her poor sister alone in her shame is a picture in a locket. Her goal is now revenge. She knows who she is after, and she will make him pay. Nathaniel is intrigued by Alice, but begins to suspect her motives when he keeps encountering threats on his life in her presence.
I loved this story. The way the mystery is developed and solved is masterful, and I feel like Bright still has some surprises for us in her pocket that will be revealed in the rest of the series. The characters are intricate with complete backstories that inform their motivations. I never once felt like the characters were doing something stupid or random just for the sake of furthering the plot, which is refreshing. Alice, in particular, is wonderfully feisty and intelligent. I completely sympathized with her and her journey. The secondary characters, especially the Duke and Eliza, give a depth to the world (and make me hope for their story).
The Bottom Line-
Elizabeth Bright is a talented new author, and fans of historical romance will love this book. She has a great handle on this time period, and her plotting is original and well-done. “Twice as Wicked” is currently on sale for .99, and that is a total bargain. I recommend it at full price. I will read the future books in this series, and I look for great things to come for Ms. Bright. 5 stars!