Bound by Your Touch
By Meredith Duran
Lydia Boyce has suffered one of the cruelest embarrassments possible – she has assumed that George would propose to her. Instead, George seeks the hand of Lydia’s sister, Sophie. Lydia foresees a life of spinsterhood and research, working with her father who is a collector and dealer in Egyptian antiquities. As Merdith Duran’s Bound by Your Touch opens, Lydia is well established as her father’s right hand man, but she is not at all settled or happy in the role that fate has cast her.
Bound by Your Touch is set in Victorian England, a time when societal rules were strict for single women. Lydia loathes the rules set out for her, and works tirelessly for her father in his business while he travels to Egypt for his work. Life has become an endless stretch of work, chaperoning her sisters, and mundane activities, until a chance meeting with James Sanburne, son and heir to Lord Moreland changes everything. Lydia is attracted to the tortured and dark Viscount, but knows that he is a dangerous rogue that could damage her already tarnished reputation beyond repair.
Sanburne has his own burdens: a sister who is institutionalized for murdering her abusive husband, his antagonistic relationship with his father, and a group of friends who seemingly spend a great deal of time in gin joints and opium dens. Something about Lydia breaks Sanburne’s hardened shell, and he quickly tries to squelch the feelings that he has for this strong yet fragile woman.
As the mystery surrounding her father’s work unravels, Lydia is pulled into the dark underworld of stolen antiquities, and only Sanburne’s persistence keeps her from serious danger or death. Sanburne’s unresolved feelings about his sister’s situation, his tenuous relationship with his father, and his n’er do well activities all make Lydia ill at ease, yet she is drawn again and again to his side. Bound by Your Touch is at once sensual and suspenseful as author Duran uses language and imagery masterfully throughout the novel. Don’t hesitate to put this novel on your must-read list!
Joyce Greenfield, ReaderToReader.com