Naked and Afraid

It is Novella day for me here at A Kiss at Midnight Reviews. Today I am talking about the Novella Once Upon a Moonlit Night  by Elizabeth Hoyt. It is one of the Maiden Lane Series book but she calls it number 10.5.


Heat Level: ♥♥♥♥♥

Overall Raking: 4.5/6 Glass Slippers

Genre: Historical Romance

The story starts dramatically as Hippolyta is being forced to marry an awful man who is simply trying to use her for her money. He knows that she is part Indian, something frowned upon in London society  because the aristocrats are old fashioned and dislike people who are different… Good thing people have moved on from that train of thought. Anyway, he is blackmailing her, insisting if she doesn’t marry him that he will tell everyone and ruin any other prospects she might have.

Hippolyta is rich, an heiress, and beautiful but she has no intention of staying with this cruel man. She sneaks out of his home in rags taken from the maid and tries to run to safety. But it is muddy, she isn’t used to rushing, and there are giant hounds chasing her.

Luckily, she comes upon a carriage who allows her to join them to the next town. Matthew, a new nobleman but an avid traveler, doesn’t believe her story and is convinced she is a maid with sores and smallpox. This obviously changes when he sees her emerge from a bath…naked with her skin glistening with water he sees a whole new woman. Duh.

When they come upon the next town, she runs into her father and the guards searching for her. But everything is not smooth sailing now that Matthew wants to marry her. See how they overcome the obstacles of old money, new money, aristocracy, and racism.

I enjoyed this book but I always enjoy everything that Hoyt writes. But I do miss the Ghost of St Giles. He was a mysterious vigilante who looked after the poor in the run down version of London… most of the time.

Heads up, this is a dirty dirty book. The scenes are graphic and there is some crude language that isn’t normally gracing Hoyt’s books. However, I still liked it. For me, it didn’t cross a line to distasteful but it’s something to consider.


There are some novellas that don’t provide enough information or the plot feels rushed. I think Hoyt did a good job with the pacing and the level of detail. If this novella strikes your interest, then you should check out the first book in the Maiden Lane series, Wicked Intentions. 

_ Sarah



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