Lady Philippa Marbury is...odd.
The brilliant, bespectacled daughter of a double marquess cares more for books than balls, for science than the season, and for laboratories than love. She's looking forward to marrying her simple fiancé and living out her days quietly with her dogs and her scientific experiments. But before that, Pippa has two weeks to experience all the rest - 14 days to research the exciting parts of life. It's not much time, and to do it right she needs a guide familiar with London's darker corners.
She needs...a Scoundrel.
She needs Cross, the clever, controlled partner in London's most exclusive gaming hell, with a carefully crafted reputation for wickedness. But reputations often hide the darkest secrets, and when the unconventional Pippa boldly propositions him, seeking science without emotion, she threatens all he works to protect. He is tempted to give Pippa precisely what she wants...but the scoundrel is more than he seems, and it will take every ounce of his willpower to resist giving the lady more than she ever imagined.
©2013 Sarah Trabucchi (P)2013 HarperCollinsPublishers
I've read about 80% of this book but it's enough to do a review. I've never heard so much endless and useless conversation, ridiculous introspection and lack of actual story. The quality of the writing is poor, the story convoluted. I'm now listening to a love scene during which the heroine is naming the bones of the hero's arm in Latin.
I do not understand the mostly positive reviews.
It is a very entertaining series by the great Sarah MacLean and complimented by Landor.
Another stellar performance by Landor, who gives distinct personality to each character.
My second book by Sarah MacLean and the second book in the Rules of Scoundrels series, this installment follows the brilliant financial keeper of the Fallen Angel, Cross, and the odd but equally intelligent, Philippa.
Phillipa is a unique female in that she values logic and reasoning rather than emotions to guide her through life's decisions. Knowing the expectations of the society in which she lives in, she agrees to marry Lord Castleton even though she has no desire or understanding of the physical marital workings. She is honorable in her prospective duties as a wife and the vows she will take and thus seeks experience and tutelage in the art or love, desire, and whatever is required of her as a wife. She sets her sights on Mr. Cross for the sole reason that his reputation paints him as an expert in the field in which she seeks knowledge.
Cross is a ladies man, or at least that's what's commonly thought of him. He is quick witted and intelligent, but he has a past that seems to hold him hostage to guilt.
This was cute and exactly what you would expect given the synopsis. I didn't enjoy the novel as much as the first installment because there really wasn't anything overly different about the story (compared to other HR novels with similar premises). However, as an addition to the series, it does have good qualities to add.
Narrator: Rosalyn Landor
I've listen to many historical romance novels read by Landor and she does an excellent job narrating the characters and the accents. She is easy to listen to although as a rule, my audio books are almost always played at 1.5x normal speed.
She did an awesome job! This is only my 3rd or 4th book in which I listened to Rosalyn Landor and with the exception of Then Came You she's a good narrator.
LOL.. One reviewer gave this book 3 stars because Penelope and Bourne weren't in it enough. That's just crazy. This was Pippa and Cross/Jasper's story. Why would Penelope and Bourne be in it at all? This was a wonderful story and I loved every single word of it. Pippa was a scientist and Cross was needed for her study on how to entice her husband-to-be. I loved her silliness and her clumsiness. I loved Cross' angst and his feelings that he wasn't good enough for Pippa and even if he didn't kiss her until 68% he did a whole lot more without touching her. It was spectacular! I recommend this and A Rogue by any Other Name to all romance readers who like great sex in their books and great stories of love and romance.
This is my first Sarah MacLean novel and will not be my last. On top of a good story with strong characters there was clever and entertaining humor throughout. If your looking for lots of sexual scenes, you'll be disappointed, but the book has just enough of that to make the story believable and fun. Rosalyn Landor does here usual fantastic job narrating
I love all genres of books. However, when I listen to audio books as I clean, garden, drive they are better with a lot of heat!
Sarah Maclean has her own very specific style of writing - sometimes witty, sometimes sweet, sometimes heart-wrenching. Honestly, we've read about the typical historical heroine who's a Bluestocking and thus either rendered unmarriageable or has been on the shelf until a gorgeous hunk (insert Duke / Marquess / Earl) sees the pretty eyes behind the thick glasses and the clever brain behind the plain face.
This book is not that much different, except that the hero (an Earl) is a smart one too. When I read Pippa & Cross's introduction scene in The First Rule of Scoundrels, I was happy to see a hero who ran a gambling hell. Alas, it so happens that 3 of the 4 owners of The Fallen Angel are some sort of Lord (Bourne is a Marquess, Cross turns out to be an Earl, Temple is Duke - I bet Chase too is some Lord or the other). Seems like majority of historical novels need to give the hero a title.
Despite all that, the story is somewhat fresh with a bluestocking heroine asking a rake to give her lessons in "Coitus" and how to tempt her to-be-husband. Only thing is, during all these lessons, they inevitably fall in love. Of course we need various obstacles to make a story interesting, and these are introduced in the form of Pippa's fiance and some villain named Digger Knight (won't spoil it much for you).
If you like Maclean, you'll enjoy this one too. It is predictable (as all historical romances are expected to be), which makes is a good escape from reality.
Rosalyn Landor's delivery of the story brought the story to life and made the book very enjoyable
I think that it should have been more laid out as to how her first engagement came about.
No. But i will not get involved with the author again.
Absolutely not. One Good Earl Deserves a Lover is my favorite Sarah MacLean novel -- and I bought the audiobook to experience it again. The narrator's interpretation is much less funny and much more breathless than the book itself. Pippa has a spine in the book and in the narration...she sounds like a total baby! Also, Cross is so MEAN-sounding. And he was clever and funny in the book. The reader just...missed the mark.
Pippa is one of the best heroines in romance. Hands down.
No. It was a terrible interpretation. Sarah MacLean's books are hilariously funny -- and this reading seemed as though the narrator didn't read the book ahead of time and notice all those funny moments.
Read the book if you can. Skip the audio.
I have to remember that I don't like this narrator.. personal preference kind of thing.. I just do not care for the voice she uses for the Hero in her narration.. ugh.. so I'm sure that influenced my feelings about the book in total... I like quirky so I especially liked the heroine of this book - total quirky!... Sarah MacLean did a good job of making me care what happened to her and to our Hero. I would have liked a bit more action and a little less talk or description but again, a personal preference. The story was creative and entertaining as our nerdy Heroine seeks to do her research on what's expected on her wedding night. Unfortunately (and somewhat unbelievably), she choose a rogue and scoundrel to find her answers. This was a bit of a stretch but I suspended my disbelief and went with it... and I'm glad I did. The book was entertaining with a satisfying ending.
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