The Devil in Disguise (Regency Rogues, Bk 1)
The Devil in Disguise - Regency Rogues, Bk 1 Author:Stefanie Sloane Ridiculously wealthy and admired by all, Lady Lucinda Grey is most intently not looking for a suitor. Dangerously handsome with a reputation to match, Lord William Randall, the Duke of Clairemont, has, in every sense of the word, contempt for the state of matrimony. — The universe chuckled, and the whole of England would never be the same again.
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Thrown together when Will’s ties to an elite branch of His Majesty’s Forces assigns him the task of protecting the beautiful lady, neither could have imagined in their wildest dreams just where their association would lead.
A French assassin with a penchant for pain, three aunts known about town as The Furies, an elaborate scheme that goes awry at a deliciously decadent mid-spring masked ball, and a priceless Thoroughbred stallion are at the heart of Lucinda and Will’s adventure.
And that is only the beginning. The truly death-defying twist? Can a man who’s spent his entire life attempting to forget the existence of his heart accept the one gift that could save him? Is it possible for a woman so sure of what’s right to acknowledge all that is wrong in order to offer her love?« less
This book starts out full of promise but falls a little short of delivering. There is an interesting plot & family drama in the background but not enough detail is given to really bring it all together. Your left wondering Why, How & When a lot. Also there is great chemistry between Lucinda & Iron Will but when the author actually brings them together it is a flop. We are talking less then a page with no build up and the scene itself was dry and unbelievable ...perhaps the book would have been better with out it. All that being said...it was still a cute, easy to read story that was enjoyable as much as annoying.
The copy I read was an ARC and was still in need of editing so in the end hopefully some of these issues will be resolved.
I will pick up and read the next book in the series and decide then whether or not worth continuing.
Lady Lucinda Grey vows never to marry. She loves her freedom and since she was left with a very nice size fortune from her deceased father, she can enjoy that freedom and not conform to what her duty would be. Unbeknownst to her, she has been targeted by Garenne. Garenne is a psychopath and has been hired to kidnap Grey.
Lord William Randall has built his reputation as a rake. This disguise lets him gather information for the Young Corinthians, a spy organization, without raising suspicions. Originally Garenne had been thought dead but now they know that he is loose and on the prowl. Will is charged with protecting Grey and to do that he must get close to her. Will knows that Grey would never consider him a suitor so he appeals to her intellectually side by bargaining something she wants.
What starts as a purely business arrangement turns into two people unable to resist each other. With the mix of danger and romance rolled up, The Devil in Disguise is a fast-paced read. Thrown into the mix is a whole spy organization that gives The Devil in Disguise an air of mystery that will keep you reading. Of course you do have the typical nuances of a romance read with the main characters denying their love to each other and then coming together with fierce passion only to find one has betrayed the other. But it wouldnt be a historical romance otherwise, right?
wolfie0516 reviewed The Devil in Disguise (Regency Rogues, Bk 1) on
Helpful Score: 2
I really hate to write a bad review because what doesn't appeal to me, probably does appeal to someone else and who am I to judge? But this book had such glaring and appalling shortcomings that it was too hard to let it go without some comment. I also rely very much on people's reviews for books to determine what I'll read because I have so little time and there are so many great books out there to read. I rely on other people's info to help cull the selections for me. Hopefully my comments will help someone else who does the same as I.
The good things about the book were few and far between, but they were IMHO: First, a potentially good storyline of a brave and handsome duke-turned-spy who is assigned to protect a lovely, intelligent, and independent heiress who has been targeted for kidnapping by an enemy agent for her wealth. The Duke has to pretend to court her to get close enough to protect her. There's so much potential for them to get close and develop an interesting and deep relationship once they actually start spending time together. But instead, what happens is an instantaneous falling in love with one another completely apart from any substantial or intriguing dialogue between the two. I could believe their instant physical attraction to one another, but the dialogue never exists between them for there to be anything more than just the barest and most superficial of relationships. I never saw how her wittiness or intelligence or depth of character was established or revealed. As far as the Duke was concerned, there was also so much potential for a very colorful, bold, brave character with interesting background life experiences to draw us in, but that never really panned out either. Second positive point is her aunts. They are really cute, interesting characters, each with very different and unique personalities and roles to play. I enjoyed what little parts they played in the story. Which leads to a complaint, I would have liked for them to have had more involvement in the story since they were one of the few enjoyable parts.
The negatives were pervasive throughout the whole book. First of all, the editing was so horrible, I constantly had to work to keep straight or figure out what the author meant to say. I was willing to overlook this to some degree, but at some point, it was impossible to overlook and as I read other reviews about this book, that was something that was commented on by everyone else, so it wasn't just an issue to me. The second problem I had was as I mentioned before, I never became convinced of their "love" for one another. It was supposed to be a strong enough love that he was willing to sacrifice his career, which he lived for and truly loved, for her, and for her to be willing to give up her much desired independence and vow to never marry. One reviewer I read called it a "lukewarm passion", which I think is a perfect way to describe it. Isn't that an oxymoron - how can a passion which by definition is fervent be lukewarm which by definition mean without enthusiasm or fervor? Third complaint is how the story jumped randomly from scene to scene with no smooth or logical transitions. It felt like one scene was never completed or made sense before all of a sudden, it's over, and we've been transported to some random new scene that has no relation to what just almost happened and no closure was given. I kept thinking that there were missing pages or I had turned two pages over rather than to the next one. Fourth, I felt like the wording and phrasing of things was very cliche and that they were stuck into the story so they would fit into the prescribed template for historical romance novels. The overall delivery just fell short for me. Lastly, there were story points that never made sense to me. I still don't understand how kidnapping an heiress who is in charge of her own life and wealth is beneficial to the enemy. How do they plan to get her money or property? There's no one to ransom her to because she alone controls her wealth and possessions. Are they so assured they can force her to turn it all over to them? How can this happen when she would have to deal with solicitors and people she would be able to get help/rescue from? There's no leverage that I can think of they could hold over her head. There is no indication that they plan to harm her family or beloved horses or anything else, for that matter. Also, the enemy agent (Garenne) is a well-known enemy of the Duke and his co-agents. Garenne knows well that the Duke is an agent of the Crown because of their history together in past missions. So why doesn't Garenne just kill the Duke to get him out of the way? There is one somewhat direct attack in the park, and one indirect attempt (at the pub/inn) on the Duke's life, but he is constantly out in the open and unguarded so an agent as skilled and deadly as Garenne is described as being, should easily be able to stop him from successfully guarding and protecting the heroine. These are just two questions that come to mind, but they are points critical to the credibility of the whole premise of the story.
Again, I hate to give a bad review, but after reading 70% of the book, I couldn't finish it. I hate to do that. I always want to finish any book I start because after putting the effort to get as far as I do, I want to see it through, but I finally realized that it made no sense to take more time suffering through it when I have so many amazing and incredible books on my TBR shelf. Another positive though, I think the cover is gorgeous and did fit the description of the characters in the book (how often does that happen?). Good luck to any who decide to read it. Based on the PBS rating for it, it appears that some readers were able to get some enjoyment from it. I'm glad. I wish the best for authors in this genre because I really love it and hope for there to be many more published. For more and better (by which I mean, better articulated, not necessarily that give a positive rating) reviews than what I have given, a good place to go is goodreads.com. There were quite a few reviews written up for this book at that site and as I said, they were pretty complete and well written.
I have to start out by saying that this is not the typical book I read. I never thought I would be a fan of Regecny Romance novels/time period romance novels. I am more of a Paranormal/Urban Fantasy fan.
The story centers around the hero Duke William Randall of Clairmont and Lady Lucinda Grey. Both of which are very strong characters. Lucinda Grey has avoided just about every suitor in London. At age 26 she has proven that a woman does not need to be married to be happy (which is truly not the norm in the 1800s). Afterall it's every woman's dream to marry, right....NOT. However Lucinda does appease her friend and meets suitor after suitor only to turn them down.
Duke William Randall, also known as Iron Will, has a bit of a reputation. One that preceeds him. He is not a fan of the proper high society and is instead known for his temper and galavanting around with numerous women in London. Never settling down and instead jumping from bed to bed. What no one knows is that he is part of a secret society of spies known as the Young Corithians in which they protect the best intrests of England. Therefore his reputation and his actions are what is needed in order to cover up his affilitation with this society.
Luncida's and William's paths cross when the society stumbles upon a plot for the kidnapping of Lucinda. Since William is the best spy they have his job is to go undercover protecting Lucinda by posing as suitor. William believes this mission to be like any other mission until he sets his eyes Lucinda. He is truly captivated by her beauty and as he starts to get to know her realizes she is more than a pretty face. She is independent, strong, funny, and above all intelligent. After all she has managed to avoid every suitor that has entered her life.
Lucinda is of coarse unaware of the attempt on her life. When she meets William at a party she has know idea that his true intentions are to protect her. However she can't help but notice how handsome and sexy he is but she is aware of his reputation. She can't help be attracted to him, but when he offers to court her she is not truly sure it is something she wants. Yet he has something she wants more than anything else and to her allowing "Iron Will" to court her is the only way to obtain what she wants. After all she has avoided marriage since she was 16 it shouldn't be that difficult to avoid falling for his charms.
This book had drama, romance, and intrigue. Through out the novel we see William's feelings grow for Lucinda and her's for him. However a man that has been so used to not feeling anything for anyone doesn't know if he can truly love Lucinda the way she deserves. After all he believes he is truly unlovable. However as Lucinda's feelings grow she shares with him her heart trying to break through to Will. Yet time and time again she is heart broken. Can Will get over his past and make a choice to live a life with love or will is iron will get in the way of true hapiness. You have to read the book to find out.
The book had action, romance, and intrigue. I found the character's sarcastic bantar between one another to be funny and normal. I would have enjoyed a little more umph in the romance scenes but that's just the way I like it. All in all a good read that kept me occupied. If you are a fance of the time period/regency romance novels I suggest you pick this book up