How to Romance a Rake
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release Date: Aug 7, 2012
Retail Price: 7.99
Heat Level: Sensual
You can lead a wallflower to the ball, but you can't make her bloom--unless one daring young bachelor turns up the heat...
What's a nice girl like Miss Juliet Shelby doing at a place like Lord Deveril's ballroom? With her shy demeanor, she's a total stranger to the dance floor and a source of mockery for the ton. So imagine her surprise when Deveril gallantly comes to her defense--and offers to teach her to dance! Juliet can hardly believe the most handsome bachelor in London would notice her, until he takes her in his arms and sets her heart ablaze...
Lord Alec Deveril has never felt such a spark of attraction for an unmarried lady before. Unlike the "fashionable" ladies he's accustomed to, Juliet possesses a generous spirit, a fiery intelligence--and an explosive secret. Deep in the London underworld, a dear friend has vanished, and Juliet fears the worst. Deveril insists on helping, escorting her through the darkest alleys in town. But he too is hiding a shocking secret--and the only way he can defeat the devil in his past is to seduce the angel in his arms...
Series: Ugly Ducklings
The second book in the Ugly Duckling series is sexy and romantic.
Juliet Shelby is used to hiding in the corners and not letting anyone know her secret. Even her closest friends and cousins, Cecily and Maddie, don’t know the truth about the injury she sustained as child. Juliet is an unusual heroine – she has a prosthetic leg. Due to an accident she lost her foot and has hidden the injury from everyone in her life. Although they see her limp and she uses a walking aide, no one knows the extent of the injury. She comes into her own with the help of an unlikely friend.
Lord Alec Deveril has spent his adulthood working to overcome his father and uncle’s reputations. To that end he plans to marry someone that doesn’t elicit great passion and that will allow him to maintain his fashionable status. His plan is interrupted by an unwanted attraction to a certain debutant and her need for someone to help her find a friend that has gone missing.
Alec and Juliet’s romance is wonderful. I love the way that their relationship develops from friends with an attraction to each other to full blown love. The feelings between them progress slowly and sweetly. I loved the progression and how they take time to get to know each other before acting on their feelings for each other.
The two characters have one thing in common that bonds them together – their parents. Juliet’s mother has hidden her daughter away since her accident, not allowing her to build a life of her own. She treats her terribly and tries to force her into a marriage that would be a disaster in many ways. Alec’s father was physically abusive to his mother and Alec fears that he will become just like him. Together they learn that they aren’t like their parents and that they are so much more than they were raised to believe they were.
The mystery of what has happened to Juliet’s former music teacher and friend adds the right amount of intrigue and action to help move the story along. Her whereabouts and what happened to her serves as a catalyst to Alec and Juliet spending time together. There were a few times in the book that it seemed as if Juliet had forgotten about Mrs. Turner. Instead of feeling like a loose plot line, these lapses felt organic to the story. With all of the drama and changes happening in Juliet’s life it made sense that she would have trouble focusing.
The writing is superb. The characters have a rapport with each other that is entertaining and helps the reader learn so much about the characters and their actions. The descriptions are realistic and add so much to the story.
Ms. Collins is an author that will be on my auto-buy list from her on out. I can’t wait to read the next book in this series.
If you are a fan of Tessa Dare, then you love Manda Collins.
Reviewed by Carrie
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