Welcome to today’s stop for Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover: The Rules of Scoundrels # 4 by Sarah MacLean. I’ve got a review and excerpt here, and you will want to check out the other tour stops and be sure to enter the tour wide giveaway where you could win a $50.00 Choice Book Seller Gift Card and Print Set of the Rule of Scoundrels Books 1-3.
The fourth installment in Sarah MacLean’s Rules of Scoundrels series is rife with twists, turns, secrets, angst and is so horribly fun I can’t stand it. The standard scoundrel in this series has been a man, and it was such a treat to have a story focused on a woman with the brash and brazen (for the time) attitude to do as she wished, society be damned.
Georgiana is wonderful: after having been born on the wrong side of the blanket, her position in society as Lady Georgiana is tentative at best. While she is fairly well accepted in the ‘lower eschelon’, her notoriety as the owner and founder of a gaming hell, and her rather bold refusal to be cowed by ‘her betters’ in the pecking order that is society instantly sets her apart. A hasty choice as a young girl found her pregnant and alone: she decided then that security for her and her daughter Caroline was the most important goal. Whether the security comes from the secrets she holds, or from the outlying possibility of marrying well (equals rich and titled) Georgiana has plans. Many Plans.
Duncan is a newspaper man, with the ability to laud or ruin simply through his research, determination and pen. He is fascinated with Georgiana: her strength, the perseverance and her ability to seemingly rise above the snubs and slights. Of course, there is the mysterious “Chase” to uncover – and this name makes the toffs shudder. Famous, or infamous, keeper and releaser of secrets, Duncan is convinced that Chase has something on Georgiana – and he wants to discover the what, to protect her and remove the threat.
The set up for this particular story begins at the beginning, and there are allusions and mentions of Chase throughout the earlier books, I’ve not read the first two (a situation I am remedying over the holiday break) but the threads from the third book neatly wind into this one. With humor, heart and a very smooth and polished writing style, MacLean builds the world, the mysteries and presents readers with plenty of imagery that settings and characters come alive and breathe with you as you read.
The characters are wonderfully developed: Caroline a touch precocious but so like her mother in cleverness and self-confidence that you can’t help but like her. Georgiana in her tough outer shell that is encountered by all but her daughter: making a solid life in a man’s world with few cheering her on or being outwardly supportive for fear of scandal and taint. And lastly, Duncan: his take no prisoners approach to research, the attraction for Georgiana that slowly grows until he realizes that the beauty is far more a match for him than he could have hoped for. Their relationship is a push-pull of give and take, with some angst and struggle while they sort out their own feelings, but a wonderfully ‘right’ match that will leave you smiling.
I loved this series and have picked up the first two in the series to read from the beginning, and have added other titles by this author to my list of titles to purchase.
Title: Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover
Author: Sarah MacLean
Series: The Rules of Scoundrels #4
Also in this series: No Good Duke Goes Unpunished
Genre: Historical Romance
Published by: Avon
Source: Publisher Via Edelweiss
Audio Length: 11 Hours: 55 minutes
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ AllRomance ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦Audible
By day, she is Lady Georgiana, sister to a duke, ruined before her first season in the worst kind of scandal. But the truth is far more shocking-in London’s darkest corners, she is Chase, the mysterious, unknown founder of the city’s most legendary gaming hell. For years, her double identity has gone undiscovered...until now.
Brilliant, driven, handsome-as-sin Duncan West is intrigued by the beautiful, ruined woman who is somehow connected to a world of darkness and sin. He knows she is more than she seems and he vows to uncover all of Georgiana’s secrets, laying bare her past, threatening her present, and risking all she holds dear...including her heart.
See the Series at Goodreads
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher Via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.