London's most notorious rogue - decadent, depraved, forbidden:
The ladies of the town won't stop whispering about deliciously wicked Jack Dodger - once a thieving street urchin, now the wealthy owner of London's most exclusive gentleman's club. There's no pleasure he hasn't enjoyed, no debauchery the handsome scoundrel won't provide for the lords who flock to his house of carnal intrigue.
London's most virtuous lady - honorable, uncorrupted, and all too human:
Olivia, Duchess of Lovingdon, would never associate with such a rogue. So when Jack is named sole heir to the duke's personal possessions, the beautiful, well-bred lady is outraged. Now, Olivia is forced to share her beloved home with this despicable man.
But Olivia's icy disdain is no match for Jack's dangerous charm. His touch awakens desire. His kiss demands surrender. She will struggle to bar Jack from her heart....but her body, coveting divine release, will not let her bar him from her bed.
©2009 Jan Nowasky (P)2012 HarperCollinsPublishers
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
STORY (historical romance) - I like contemporary romances much better than historical ones, but this one is actually pretty good. It has the usual issue -- someone from the upper class falls for someone from the lower -- but this book has a lot of other stuff going on that makes it much better. Olivia is an English Dutchess whose husband has just died, and Jack is a scoundrel. They've been thrown together in a most unusual way, and they end up living in the same house and Jack is appointed to be guardian for Olivia's son.
Needless to say, they end up having the hots for each other. I subtracted a star from this book primarily because I got sick and tired of them constantly thinking about each other and trying to analyze their feelings and what they should do about them. Enough!!!! But nevertheless, the story is good and their feelings for each other become genuine. The author has a talent for writing very hot scenes in a unique way that has great tenderness and also maintains an element of class.
PERFORMANCE - I love Susan Ericksen from the In Death series, and she continues to deliver. Her voice lends itself to portray men and women nicely, and her natural English accent is lovely. She doesn't distinguish much between characters but does some pretty good cockney accents and the voice of a young boy.
OVERALL - This is Book 2 in the series, but it's the first I've listened to. I can't comment on its relation to the rest of the series, but it can stand completely on its own. There's no profanity, but there is lots of thinking about sex and also some pretty explicit sexual acts. Recommended for mature females only. Definitely not for guys.
Never judge a book by its movie
Oliver Twist on Steroids ( ok that's 4 words)
The relationship between Jack Dodger an the Duchess' son Henry. ( it's so sweet)
Consider Yourself one of the Family!!
Listening to book 3 can't wait to get to book 4.
HOPEFUL ROMANTIC. I Enjoy Historical & Inspirational Romances With Great Narration. Oh, And I give Honest Reviews with No Spoilers. ;-)
I enjoyed this second book in the series. The characters continue from book one and are so well developed I found myself totally involved....again. It is really difficult to stop listening mostly because of the hardships they've endured and how they overcome them. The love story just develops naturally....not something far-fetched or predictable. I highly recommend this series.
I love books! Audiobooks take stories to the next level. I'm obsessed with Audible and will try to rate all of my books. Happy Listening! ;)
This book had great plot points! All that I thought would happen ended up being completely different by the end of the book. I love how Lorraine Heath slowly develops attraction into powerful love. And her characters grow and change so much throughout the story. It was a journey into healing your heart and finding happiness. I highly recommend this four star historical romance.
Narration: Susan Ericksen is consistently good. She's great with historical romances. Good accents, marked differences between characters and added emotions to the story. I don't particularly like male narrators but Antony Ferguson did a good job as well. His narration was minimal (only for some journal entries) and for me it was like a cherry on top of your sundae... A sweet addition.
Busy mom who loves to read but doesn't always have the time. I enjoy YA, Romance and the occasional Best Seller.
Much like the first book in this series I thought the narration was a little too boring. (no real differences with male/female voices) Despite my lack of interest in the narrator I really did enjoy this book. It's a decent romance and I really have no complaints about the overall story. If you liked the first book or enjoy historical romance then you will enjoy this one too. Overall it was worth a credit, but I'm glad I got it on sale instead.
Since I'm now in love with the world Lorraine Heath has built for the Scoundrels of St James, I will say I'm pleased with this listen. As far as the female lead, I have to say I wasn't much for her. I didn't really feel the spark between her and Jack like I did with Catherine and Luke in the first book, and I feel like Jack deserved a better woman. As far as Jacks story, WOW!! He may end up being my favorite scoundrel out of them all, and that's a big step for me since I was pretty upset with him for decisions he made regarding Luke in the last book.
Narration was good, but as I felt with the first book, there needs to me more variation between characters voices. Jacks kind of sounds like Luke, Luke kind of sounds like Graves, Catherine and Olivia are similar... Aside from that, no one can ever accuse Susan Ericksen of not bringing spunk and personality to each character. Antony Ferguson is still a weird choice, but as in the last book he only speaks for a few minutes here and there.
Stick with this one, even if you're not loving it as much as the first. Both Jacks story and how you see him by the end is really wonderful.
Not my favorite of the series but enjoyable nonetheless. A bit slow in places but good for relaxing to cooking or in the car
I love books and love to get lost in the fantasy. I'm always looking for a new good story to bury myself in. :)
This was a very good story. I liked Olivia from the start. Jack acted like a real jerk for the first part of the story but he did grow on me and I liked him as well by the end of the story.
Olivia is the widow of a Duke with a 5 years old son who is heir to the title. She grew up being the dutiful daughter and her father married off a much older man (one of his friends) but she wasn't much more than a broodmare for the Duke to get an heir with and then pretty much ignore until his death (making her wonder if maybe she shouldn't have been so dutiful). Now she doesn't intend to re-marry unless it's for love.
Jack was born in one of the poorer sections of London. He didn't have a good life or parents that cared about him so he ended up in a group of child thieves, stealing to survive and protecting the younger kids as much as he was able. Jack got an unexpected windfall when he was younger and used it to open a "Gentleman's club" where the rich men of London can go to gamble and have contact with loose women. Jack has grown rich from his business but is always looking for ways to get more money.
When the story begins, Olivia's husband has just died. She's waiting for the reading of the will but is shocked and confused as to why the infamous Jack Dodger is there as well. The attorney makes it clear that it's a requirement of the will that they both be there. He then reads out a will that gives Jack just about all the property that isn't "entailed" as part of the titled holdings being saved for the heir, Henry, to come of age. All Jack has to do to get these riches is to agree to be guardian of Henry until he grows up of Olivia remarries. Jack isn't sure why this Duke would ask him of all people to be guardian of his son. Jack met him a few times but didn't know the man but the large amount of wealth being offered makes Jack consider the offer. Olivia is shocked and angry about the will and thinks her husband must have gone mad to do this not to mention that fact that he pretty much slighted Olivia in the will...leaving her just enough to live off of comfortably but much less than what most would consider right. Jack finds Olivia's anger fun and decides to increase his enjoyment by doing everything in his power to piss Olivia off, as if everything that's happened isn't enough and Olivia needs more stress to deal with. Jack doesn't care about anyone but himself though and goes about doing everything he can to make her life miserable.
Olivia is horrified by the fact that Jack is her son's guardian and now owns the home they live in. She wants to leave but can't "legally" take her son away because Jack's his guardian. TBH, I think Olivia's late husband should have been ashamed of himself for what he put her through (Both before and after his death) and I can totally understand her being horrified by her circumstance because Jack goes out of his way to behave like a beast to her. Olivia does realize pretty quickly that Jack might not be such a bad guardian after all (after getting rid of a secretly bad nanny and getting Henry a puppy). She starts to accept Jack more and tries to make peace but it doesn't come right away because Jack takes great pleasure in torturing her. After a while though (and an unexpected sickness), the walls come down between Jack and Olivia. They start to respect each other and the attraction that was buried is now coming out in full force for them both. They do try to resist the attraction but this doesn't succeed for long. Jack was intending to marry Olivia off so he could get out of the agreement ASAP but as they continue to see each other, those plans don't seem like such a good idea any more. As Jack and Olivia are trying to figure their relationship out there's another twist that comes in to the plot that brings a bit of danger/suspense with it. Olivia and Jack go through a bit of difficulties but come through it alright and they start their HEA.
I enjoyed this story very much. I liked how Jack and Olivia came together and was happy for them once they worked things out. In the beginning of the story, Jack's actions and attitude just pissed me off but that did stop and it was probably my main complaint about the book. Outside of Jack's early attitude I liked the book and am glad I read it. I'm planning to read the next book in the series. I'd recommend this story. Thumbs up. :)
Story was too slow. I had to skip chapters just to get to the main plot..as one of the readers said most of the story was just argue, argue, argue...
I am a lover of books. I enjoy losing myself in a fabulous romance and great story plot.
Jack is a mystery, AND dangerously delicious, AND savvy AND uniquely stylish…
I could just keep going, but the gist is that I think Jack is really appealing. So, after listening to about 20%, I skipped to about midway to jump to the nitty gritty of his relationship to the lovely duchess Olivia. Even though I got immediate gratification, it was nice to slowly listen to the complete book again.
Out of Feagan's lads, Jack is the most secretive and cunning of the bunch and yet he plays a vital role in the previous books as he helps his friends when they're in trouble (I've read the 1st book & 3rd book already).
One of the aspects I loved about this book is that the reader is invited to enter the labyrinth of psychological presses and motives that move the Leads forward. Jack is complicated because his life has been complicated. This book reveals the traumatic events that are responsible for creating the dichotomous person that Jack is. He is so giving, and takes boys off of the streets by providing them with employment and protects them. Yet, the other side of the coin (pun intended :-), is that Jack invests too much value in the absolute love and need for money, and lots of it.
So when Jack is named sole heir to a duke's personal possessions, and is appointed the guardian of the young, Duke Henry (I believe he's 4 or 5 years old), the beautiful, and well-bred lady Olivia (Henry's mother) is outraged. Olivia is forced to accept Jack into her home as the overseer of her most prized possession, her beloved son Henry.
The romance between Olivia and Jack is nicely paced. It was so touching when they both finally come together…the moments of indulgent romance are great. Both Olivia and Jack grow personally in this book and fulfill a need for intimacy, trust and healing in each other. The cat and mouse games they play were so cute and funny at the beginning of their relationship. And, the moments in which they bear their souls to one another was just so touching.
As always…I loved the camaraderie between the gang (Jack, Luke, Jim, Bill and Frannie). I especially enjoyed Jack's conversations with Frannie (I'm such a Frannie fan) and I felt as though he understood and "saw" her more clearly than the rest of Feagan's lad did. I thought his close relationship to Feagan was really nice and sentimental. Jack still looked out and cared for Feagan.
There are many shocking details and surprises in this book. There are heavy themes that are tragic and dark. Yet, perhaps the greatest theme is how life can sometimes balance the tragedies of childhood, by unlocking the weightiest and mot beautiful gift of all…..LOVE. And, Olivia and Jack most certainly find it.
I thought the narrator was good. Enjoyed her performance.
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