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    Anna Campbell’s Review of Mr. Impossible by Loretta Chase
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  • Published: Jul 2nd, 2009

mrimpossible_chaseThis book is gorgeous!

Frankly, that’s all you need to know. Anyone who’s read it, read it again (I just did and I’m in awe over what a wonderful story it is). Anyone who hasn’t read it, buy it NOW!

Well, that was a nice easy review. Where’s the chocolate? More importantly, where are the margaritas?

You want more?

Sheesh!

Actually I had a feeling I started another review in a similar way – I checked and indeed, I did. Not coincidentally it was for Loretta Chase’s most recent release YOUR SCANDALOUS WAYS.

Clearly I’m a fan girl.

And as a dedicated fan girl, believe me it’s high praise when I say this is one of my two favorite LCs of all time. The other, as you’d guess, is LORD OF SCOUNDRELS which is regularly voted the best romance EVAH.

Like another of my favorites, Connie Brockway’s AS YOU DESIRE, which I reviewed here a couple of months ago, MR. IMPOSSIBLE is set in 19th-century Egypt among all the scholars and scoundrels scrambling for a cut of the antiquities market. Our heroine, Daphne Pembroke, is a linguistic genius, like Desdemona from the Brockway book. But Daphne is older and more bruised than Desdemona.

Like Dorothea Brooke from MIDDLEMARCH, Daphne (hmm, lots of ‘D’ heroines here, I wonder if it’s significant) made an unhappy marriage to a much older man after she convinced herself he possessed a great soul. The husband, like Casaubon in Eliot, proved to be mean, possessive, small-minded and not much fun in the sack. Not that George Eliot ever says that, but it’s pretty clear that passionate Dorothea is too much for dried up old Mr. C.

Daphne’s dried up old vicar is jealous of her intellectual achievements and spends his time trying to stop her work on the solution to reading hieroglyphs. As part of his attempts to kill her spirit, he’s convinced her that her ardent nature is unwomanly. Now he’s dead, Daphne is in Egypt continuing her research, but for the sake of her reputation, her brother Miles is the one publicly acknowledged as the scholar. When a couple of rival antiquity hunters kidnap Miles (it’s a complicated plot, don’t worry – it makes sense when you read it) because they think he’s solved the mystery of hieroglyphs, Daphne must find help to save her brother.

Enter our hero, Rupert Carsington. If you’re not totally in love with Rupert within the first couple of pages, I’ll eat my hat. Lord Hargate sends his scapegrace son Rupert to Egypt because he’s caused havoc in England. Rupert has a habit of causing havoc wherever he goes which is part of the fun of this book. Rupert treats life as an amusing game, he’s a bit like an overgrown public schoolboy. At least on the surface. There’s considerably more to Rupert than meets the eye (and what meets the eye is plenty – he’s one of the big, powerful, sexy Chase heroes like Dain from LORD OF SCOUNDRELS). He has a reputation for being as thick as two short planks. But one of the delicious running jokes is that Rupert is actually the smartest person we meet and he’s certainly got more emotional intelligence than anyone else in the book, except for perhaps the pet mongoose he adopts.

So the scene is set for a luscious clash of buttoned-up widow fighting her unruly passions and a charming, witty hero who desperately wants her to give in to her passions and put them both out of their misery. You can imagine who wins that particular battle! Most of the story takes place on a yacht traveling up the Nile as Daphne and Rupert pursue Miles’s kidnappers. Not much room to escape each other on a yacht – more fun for the reader!

As you can probably tell, I love this book. Rupert is an unusual romance hero – for a start, he’s emotionally stable! Watching him fall in love is absolutely enchanting. All I can say is, lucky Daphne! And the whole thing is told in Loretta Chase’s fabulous prose that sparkles like fine champagne.

I can only repeat – a gorgeous book!

22 Responses to “Anna Campbell’s Review of Mr. Impossible by Loretta Chase”

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  1. Christine Wells
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 3:44 am

    Oh, I so agree, Anna. I’m glad you didn’t stop at gorgeous, because that was a great review. Rupert had me the minute he strode on stage–as you know, I love a hero who has no compunction about knocking a few heads together! This is a book I have bought twice, lent out and never heard from again, I might add! Need to purchase a third copy now so I can enjoy it all over again…

    Hey, I can’t wait for Loretta’s next book!


  2. Joy
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 8:30 am

    Sounds like a great book. I’ve read LORD OF SCOUNDRELS. I will definitely check this one out. Thanks for the review.


  3. LisaK
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 9:28 am

    I’ve been on the brink of buying that book several times now but something always intervened – now I won’t wait any longer!

    It’s part of a series, isn’t it? So are the others equally good and would you recommend reading them too, and in order? Or is one enough? πŸ™‚


  4. PJ
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 11:09 am

    Great review, Anna! Had to lol at your first paragraph. Pretty much says it all, doesn’t it? πŸ™‚ I adore this book and Rupert is one of my favorite Chase heroes. Anyone who hasn’t read Mr. Impossible yet should definitely give it a try.


  5. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 2:57 pm

    Christine, it was such fun to read this book again. I haven’t read it cover to cover for ages. It’s just beautifully done – I think it might even BE my favorite Loretta Chase right now. I’ve got her new book DON’T TEMPT ME on its way right now. I’d love it to arrive before I go to the States next week. That would really lighten a horrible plane trip. Isn’t it annoying when people don’t return books they borrow? And by definition, if you lend someone a book, it’s one you like! I think you should lock away copy three and never lend it to anyone!


  6. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 2:58 pm

    Joy, this one has a lighter touch than Lord of Scoundrels although both have that lovely wit that LC is famous for. And honestly, Rupert is to die for! One of the best heroes EVAH!


  7. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 3:09 pm

    Lisa, Loretta did a series of books about the Carsington Brothers and they’re all worth reading but this one, to me, was the absolute standout. The first is Miss Wonderful, then there was MI, then Lord Perfect and then Not Quite a Lady. You don’t need to have read the others to enjoy Mr I. Some of the other characters are mentioned but don’t really play a part in the story.


  8. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 3:10 pm

    PJ, I should have known a woman of your exquisite taste would also have a crush on Rupert! Isn’t he gorgeous? Thanks for saying you enjoyed the review. This was a fun one to write!


  9. Vanessa
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 4:18 pm

    Hi, Anna! Loved your review. Clearly, you adore this book (and Rupert). Mr Impossible just dazzles. I’m about three chapters into it and already I love chemistry between Daphne and Rupert.

    ~ Vanessa


  10. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 4:45 pm

    Vanessa, I’m so glad I finally talked you into reading this book. Although Annie West who adores the darling Rupert may have had a shred of influence πŸ˜‰ What a treat you’ve got ahead of you! Thanks for popping by to comment.


  11. Annie West
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 6:08 pm

    Hi Annam

    This is one of my fave romances. And, yes, I’ve reread it. In fact, I think I reread it before you did. It’s got so much to recommend it and it’s just plain fun! How does Loretta Chase do that – have you smiling at her wit at the same time you’re salivating over her utterly gorgeous hero? Beats me but I want more of it. Hm, maybe I could reread again over the weekend just to remind myself of all the reasons I loved it.

    I see you’ve mentioned above that I adore darling Rupert. Really, he’s such a terrific hero. He doesn’t take himself seriously, he actively works to ensure others don’t, but all the while he’s a marvellous alpha hero – strong, protective, a winner, who does what others don’t dare too, he utterly seductive, he’s a perfect match for his heroine and he’s definitely hero material. And Daphne is such a great heroine…

    Loved the review. Thanks, Anna. As you can see, you’ve sparked my interest in this book AGAIN. If anyone hasn’t read a book by Loretta Chase, this is a marvellous one to start on.

    Annie


  12. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 6:39 pm

    Ha ha! Clearly, Annie, everybody will know I spoke true when I said you were crazy about the lovely Rupert πŸ˜‰ Thanks for popping by. This book really is beautifully done, isn’t it? Definitely worth yet another read, I think – and it’s going to be a cold weekend here in Oz. Hot Rupert in hot Egypt might be just what the doctor ordered.


  13. Andrea
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 8:11 pm

    One of these days, I really need to read a Loretta Chase book…

    Great review, Anna!


  14. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 2nd, 2009
    @ 8:51 pm

    Andrea, ANDREA!!!! Seriously, read Mr Impossible. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t adore this book. And then I will receive your eternal gratitude for the recommendation which suits me fine πŸ˜‰ Thanks for checking out the review. As I said, this one was fun to write!


  15. Fedora
    on Jul 4th, 2009
    @ 6:15 pm

    Anna, I LOVED Mr. Impossible… Rupert is completely impossible to resist! As Annie said, he doesn’t take himself too seriously and was perfect for Daphne! I love a man with a sense of humor!


  16. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 5th, 2009
    @ 3:11 am

    Fedora, isn’t this the BESTEST book???!!! So glad to find your’e another fan. I think Annie’s description was spot on.


  17. Mel
    on Jul 5th, 2009
    @ 8:58 am

    Mr Impossible is my favourite Loretta (and one of my fave romances of all time). My copy is starting to look quite worn out from re-reads : ) Lord Perfect is probably my next fave then good old LOS.


  18. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 5th, 2009
    @ 4:43 pm

    Mel, another fan? Yay! But Rupert is MIIIIINNNEEEE! Just don’t tell Daphne πŸ˜‰ I think this and LOS would vie for my favorites and then probably Captives of the Night. Love that story. Or maybe The Sandalwood Princess or Knaves’ Wager. Have you read her trad Regencies? They’re amazing.


  19. orannia
    on Jul 6th, 2009
    @ 8:26 pm

    Thank you Anna. But..I’m confused:

    And as a dedicated fan girl, believe me it’s high praise when I say this is one of my two favorite LCs of all time. The other, as you’d guess, is LORD OF SCOUNDRELS which is regularly voted the best romance EVAH.

    Ahhh, what about Knave’s Wager? πŸ™‚


  20. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 6th, 2009
    @ 11:47 pm

    Orannia, it’s very hard to pick the highest branch when you’re at the top of the tree! πŸ˜‰ You’ll see Knaves’ Wager has already had a mention!


  21. orannia
    on Jul 14th, 2009
    @ 8:47 pm

    I’m hopelessly confused, but that’s not hard to do πŸ™‚ I was only teasing BTW πŸ™‚ And if you have Rupert, that means I can have Julia πŸ˜‰


  22. Anna Campbell
    on Jul 23rd, 2009
    @ 5:06 pm

    Julia, huh? Interesting! πŸ˜‰ Actually I’m greedy, I want Julian too. Perhaps we could work out a job share arrangement where we swap them?