Release Date: Aug 21, 2012
Retail Price: 7.99
Heat Level: Hot
As maid to some of the most wanton ladies of the ton, Margery Mallon lives within the boundaries of any sensible servant. Entanglements with gentlemen are taboo. Wild adventures are for the Gothic novels she secretly reads. Then an intriguing stranger named Mr. Ward offers her a taste of passion, and suddenly the wicked possibilities are too tempting to resist….
Henry Atticus Richard Ward is no ordinary gentleman. He's Lord Wardeaux and he is determined to unite Margery with her newfound inheritance by any means—including seduction and deception. But when the ton condemns the scandalous servant-turned-countess and an unknown danger prepares to strike, will Margery accept Henry's protection in exchange for her trust?
She’s never known wealth; he’s never experience successful emotional ties…
In this final installment of Cornick’s Scandalous Women of the Ton series the behind-the-scenes maid of gets her own adventure. Who knew Margery Mallon was an heiress of an earl? And someone’s out to get her. Margery’s other misfortune is she’s from an adoptive family of thieves, and men involved in nefarious deeds. She doesn’t take part in any of those things, but it leaves plenty of speculation. Margery is an extremely strong woman. She strives to better herself and her situation. She doesn’t have any issue of associating with people from different walks of life. But there is one thing she won’t tolerate—being taken advantage of.
Henry doesn’t care about her past, he only cares about her future and reuniting Margery with grandfather. In his quest he’s determined to use whatever means necessary to determine who Margery is, and that she won’t take advantage of the Earl. A few omissions later and Margery is definitely not up to trusting a man that kissed her so passionately the night before all is revealed. For Henry the whole situation is a big problem because he’s a gentleman that follows the rules… always. The moment he reveals who she is and his own heritage is probably one of my favorite in the book. It sets the tone for the remaining conflict and the challenges Henry faces.
“Lord Wardeaux.” Margery sounded impatient and Henry realized that she had already addressed him once. “You are not concentrating.”
And then the battles begin. Henry’s fighting against his desire, and the mere fact that Margery infuriates him. She’s stubborn and prideful, and with every encounter he wants to kiss her senseless and bring her to her knees. He knows she feels more and for some reason he can’t let it go. I adored Henry. He’s got a dark past begin betrayed by his first wife in the worst of ways. He’s also being driven toward Margery by her grandfather and his mother, but he doesn’t want a marriage of emotion. Emotions, in his opinion, only open someone up to hurt. Of course Margery brings out the worst in him.
“It seems to me that asking you to be my guardian would be like setting a fox to protect the chickens!” Margery burst out.
This is a book filled with emotion, a bit of intrigue, and a mysterious plot to end Margery’s existence. The fiery tempers, the sexual charged arguments only make this book hotter. I liked Margery’s stubborn streak and her fired up temper. In previous books this type of character would annoy me, but in Margery it’s fitting. She’s also unique because she refuses to let her new station in life change her. I will say my only caveat or why this is not a 5 is due to the fact that there is very little challenge for Margery in becoming a lady. I didn’t see a ton of difficulty for her other than poor remarks from others of the ton and a few pot shots in a paper. She accumulates with ease, and I would have enjoyed seeing a bit more of the struggle in her journey. The mystery plot is a good sub-plot as well, but the romance really steals the show in this book.
Overall, Cornick delivers a masterful conclusion to this series and I am happy Margery received her own happily ever after. If there’s one book you should read to help you forget all the back to school stuff this one’s it.
Reviewed by Landra
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