The Untamed Bride by Stephanie Laurens

The Black Cobra Quartet, Book 1



ISBN: 978-0061795145

Reviewed by Shayna



Colonel Derek ďDelĒ Delborough and four of his friends have been tasked by the Governor-General of India to bring down the Black Cobra, head of a cult that has been terrorizing Indian villages, raping, pillaging, and murdering Indians and Englishmen alike.  After discovering the identity of the Black Cobra, Del and his men know that to bring them down, theyíre going to need hard evidence and help from the powerful Duke of Wolverstone.  Delís mission becomes personal when one of his friends is killed by the Black Cobraís men while securing the evidence they need.  Under Wolverstoneís instructions, Del and his friends split up, one carrying the original piece of evidence, the other three carrying decoys.  Each is heading to England by a separate route; and thatís just the beginning of Delís adventure. 

Arriving in Southampton, Del receives word from his aunts that he needs to escort a neighbor back home with him.  Since Del is on a mission, he absolutely refuses to do so.  Too bad for him Miss Deliah Duncannon, has no intention of being packed off by herself.  As Deliah is drawn into Delís mission, the now-retired colonel realizes that while he has faced off against numerous enemies, he has no chance against one brash, stunning Englishwoman, or his attraction to her.  The Black Cobraís men are closing in on the pair, but possibly more frightening to both than losing their lives is the possibility of losing their hearts. 

Though the Black Cobra Quartet is all new, The Untamed Bride is classic Stephanie Laurens.  It has a strong, protective hero, an unconventional, intelligent heroine, romance to warm your heart, and action a plenty.  Del is a hero straight out of Ms. Laurensís library with his strong sense of honor and his acknowledgment that heís powerless to resist his desire for the woman destined to be his.  As for Deliah, sheís a woman with a somewhat scandalous past who may seem unusual among women of her time, but fits right in with Ms. Laurensís other heroines.  The similarities to previous heroes and heroines is apparent because the Cynster cousins, Bastion Club members, and their wives all play strong supporting roles in The Untamed Bride.  Readers new to Ms. Laurensís work do not have to fear being lost, for The Untamed Bride is written to stand on its own.  Those already familiar with Ms. Laurensís books will likely enjoy revisiting some of their favorite characters once more; I definitely did. 

While the romance between Del and Deliah is at the heart of The Untamed Bride, equally important is the baiting game the group plays with the Black Cobra and his men.  I was drawn into Delís mission and avidly read the story to see what would happen next in terms of intrigue, every bit as much as I did for the love story.  All in all, The Untamed Bride was a satisfying read and a strong start to what is sure to be an exciting quartet.  Iím eager to see what happens next and as such, canít wait to read book two in the Black Cobra Quartet, The Elusive Bride.


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