Well-loved romance novelist Elizabeth Hoyt has scored again with the fifth novel in the Maiden Lane Series, Lord of Darkness. The series began with Wicked Intentions, and concerns the Makepeace family and their friends, and the efforts to shut down the gin trade in 1730's in the section of London known as St. Giles, and to try and improve the lives of the children there by running a orphanage. The last two novels have centered on a figure known as The Ghost of St. Giles, a hero to some and a criminal to others.
Lord of Darkness is well-written, evenly plotted, and sexually satisfying. Margaret "Megs" Reading and Godric St. John are cleverly presented as a couple who married to ward off scandal for her, one in which Godric was not involved, and who have lived apart since that marriage. Megs thinks the Ghost of St. Giles murdered her lover, and Godric has lived for many years faithful to the memory of his dead wife, Clara. Megs comes to London to seduce Godric into giving her a child, and to hunt down the Ghost. Neither goal is as easy to achieve as she thinks, especially when she finds out who the Ghost she seeks is.
If I have any problem with Elizabeth Hoyt and her novels it is that she prefaces every chapter with some kind of folk/fairy tale/fable of her own authorship. I don't mind the short ones, but sometimes it's a full page until we get back to the story. I know what she is doing, and it is a very interesting element she adds to the story, but I do tire of it a little. Lord of Darkness is no exception, giving us "The Legend of The Helliquin" which parallels the plot of the novel.
If you have read the other novels in Elizabeth Hoyt's Maiden Lane series, you will find this one just a wonderful as the others. If it is your first reading of Hoyt's work, Lord of Darkness can be read independently. However, I strongly urge you to then go back and read the first four, because they will give you some back ground, and a cracking good tales in their own right!