Cover Image: Wicked By Design

Wicked By Design

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Member Reviews

I am afraid I just couldn’t connect with this story. It started well and I thought I would enjoy it. Maybe if I had read the previous book, it might have helped. I know a number of reviewer really enjoyed it but unfortunately it wasn’t for me. I received a copy and have voluntarily reviewed it. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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My thanks to Head of Zeus for a digital edition via NetGalley of ‘Wicked by Design’ by Katy Moran in exchange for an honest review. It was originally published in September 2019 in hardback, ebook and audiobook and it is due out in paperback on 5 March 2020.

I have since purchased its ebook/audiobook editions for an immersive experience and to support this innovative title.

‘Wicked by Design’ is a fascinating work of historical fiction that is set in an alternative early nineteenth century. In the opening Moran writes:

“The events in this book take place during a period of history that never happened. Several years after Napoleon defeated the Duke of Wellington at the Battle of Waterloo, the French Occupation has at last been expelled from Britain. The country is on the brink of revolution–and the English throne is still empty.“

Cornwall, 1819. Recently married Hester, Lady Lamorna and her charismatic husband, Jack ‘Crow’ Crowlas, Lord Lamorna, find themselves caught up in international intrigue. 

Currently the British prime minister, Lord Castlereagh, and most of the Cabinet are staying at Nansmornow, the ancient Cornish manor where Jack and Hester live. Lord Castlereagh has it in for Jack and blackmails him into travelling to Russia on a secret mission for the British government. Hester is left behind with their infant daughter and quickly finds herself in danger.

Although the new cover suggests that this is a light Regency romance, it actually is a more serious and darker work. An epic adventure that enjoys exploring its alternative history. There is sex, thrills, betrayals, reversal of fortunes and yes, romance.

While it works as a stand-alone, Moran had written an earlier novel about Hester and Jack titled, ‘False Lights’. It has recently been reissued by Head of Zeus as ‘Hester and Crow’. I plan to read it.

This was a wonderful read, great fun yet thought provoking. It was skilfully written with rich descriptions throughout. Her alternative history was very convincing and she clearly knows the period even while creating a different outcome for the Napoleonic War. 

Will there be more adventures set in this alternative nineteen century and for Hester and Crow? Whether or not I am certainly interested in reading more of her writing and will also keep an lookout for her future projects.

It’s the kind of novel that I adore for its creativity and complexity while proving an immersive reading experience.

Highly recommended.
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This was an okay read but i think that it lagged a little too much for me given how exciting and thrilling the opening was, i found the middle portion a bit flat. The two leads, Hester and Jack, were interesting but because i didn't read the first one I feel like I missed something and that meant i didn't get the book fully.
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This was a fun read, well written and entertaining.
I loved the plot, the well written cast of characters, and the descriptions.
I look forward to reading other books by this author.
Highly recommended!
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine.
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This was a really fun book! I loved the twist of history, the romance, the characters. I'd really recommend it if you're looking for a fun regency romance. 

Thanks a lot to NetGalley and the publisher for this copy in exchange for an honest review.
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