PRINCE OF SPIES by Alex Gerlis

March 25, 2020

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The Richard Prince Thrillers, Book 1

From the publisher:

Find the truth; risk everything. A gripping WWII spy novel full of intrigue and peril from a modern master.

1942: A German spy comes ashore on a desolate stretch of Lincolnshire beach. But he is hunted down by a young detective, Richard Prince. The secret services have need of a man like him…

In occupied Europe, Denmark is a hotbed of problems for British intelligence. Rumours of a war-ending weapon being developed by the Germans are rife.

Sent to Copenhagen, Prince is soon caught in a deadly game of cat and mouse. Dodging Gestapo agents, SS muscle and the danger of betrayal, his survival – and the war effort – hangs in the balance.

Gripping and intense, Prince of Spies is the first in a new espionage series that will delight fans of Alan Furst, Philip Kerr and John le Carré.


Alex Gerlis initiates a planned series of novels revolving around Richard Prince, who is by vocation a detective in London. His activities are picked up in the midst of World War II in 1944. Prince already has earned a reputation as a hard worker, a very intelligent and savvy detective and one with a bright future in police work. He has the idea that he would like to do more, increasing his own reputation and earning promotion from the agency he works for.

The opportunity arises in a big way when Prince masterminds the capture of a Nazi spy that has secretly entered the country and who tells of secret weapons the Nazis are developing which could let them win the war. The center of the activity by Germany seems to be centered in Denmark, which is currently occupied by the Nazi army.

The British deem it necessary to get an agent into Copenhagen to begin investigating the facts about the planned weapon. Prince is fluent in Danish due to having lived in Denmark at one point in his youth. He is approached by the British Secret Service and asked if he will take on the mission. Nervous, but anxious to further develop his skills Richard accepts the assignment and is smuggled into Copenhagen.

The events depicted take Prince into Denmark, Germany, and a neutral Sweden while searching for information on what type of weapon is being developed and then where the manufacturing process is centered. Along the way, he meets a woman assigned to help him in Denmark which leads him into a love affair. In addition another woman, actually a member of the German upper class, and the wife of a high-level German army officer who is helping the British due to her distaste for Hitler’s regime has occasion to provide aide to Prince. She takes a liking to him while at the same time getting rid of her husband because of his views on the current German path which include a disdain and slaughter of Jews. This hatred reflects Hitler’s official position and his need to cleanse Germany of Jews and other groups selected for use as scapegoats who are believed to have caused a major recession in the country.

The portraits of Richard Prince, the two ladies he is involved with, and several people involved in the story’s evolution are well done. They act bravely, are motivated by their cause and feel anxiety and fear as would be normal in a titanic stress situation as is war. After an interesting read, it is no surprise that the ending finds Prince accepting another assignment and getting ready to reenter war-torn Europe again.

3/2020 Paul Lane

PRINCE OF SPIES by Alex Gerlis. Canelo Action (March 19, 2020). ASIN: B082FZQHTX. 352p.


THE DEEP by Alma Katsu

March 10, 2020

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From the publisher:

From the acclaimed and award-winning author of The Hunger comes an eerie, psychological twist on one of the world’s most renowned tragedies, the sinking of the Titanic and the ill-fated sail of its sister ship, the Britannic.

Someone, or something, is haunting the ship. Between mysterious disappearances and sudden deaths, the guests of the Titanic have found themselves suspended in an eerie, unsettling twilight zone from the moment they set sail. Several of them, including maid Annie Hebley, guest Mark Fletcher, and millionaires Madeleine Astor and Benjamin Guggenheim, are convinced there’s something sinister–almost otherwordly–afoot. But before they can locate the source of the danger, as the world knows, disaster strikes.

Years later, Annie, having survived that fateful night, has attempted to put her life back together. Working as a nurse on the sixth voyage of the Titanic‘s sister ship, the Britannic, newly refitted as a hospital ship, she happens across an unconscious Mark, now a soldier fighting in World War I. At first, Annie is thrilled and relieved to learn that he too survived the sinking, but soon, Mark’s presence awakens deep-buried feelings and secrets, forcing her to reckon with the demons of her past–as they both discover that the terror may not yet be over.

Brilliantly combining the supernatural with the height of historical disaster, The Deep is an exploration of love and destiny, desire and innocence, and, above all, a quest to understand how our choices can lead us inexorably toward our doom.


Alma Katsu has written a truly unique novel incorporating an eerie twist to the very well known story of the sinking of the Titanic in 1912. In 1916 at the height of World War one the ocean liner Britannic was sunk according to accounts by two German submarines. The Britannic coincidentally was a sister ship to the Titanic and had been turned into a hospital ship for the duration of the war. The novel moves from one point to the other effortlessly as the story unfolds.

The action swings back and forth between 1912 and 1916 and uses two protagonists to tell the story. Annie Hebbley is a young girl that has left her home in Ireland due to the horrific conditions she was suffering there. She manages to luckily get a job on the Titanic as a room steward serving twelve of the first-class cabins on the ship. Among the passengers she serves are John Jacob Astor and Benjamin Guggenheim, well known multimillionaires of the day.

The second individual playing an important role in the book is Mark Fletcher, an American returning home with his new British wife and their baby. From the sailing date, both passengers and crew shrug off odd happenings including the sudden death of a young boy sailing as caretaker to one of the millionaire’s dogs. The chairman of the White Star Line owners of the Titanic is aboard and hastens to assure everyone that the ship is unsinkable. People should not worry and just enjoy the luxury of the cruise bound for New York.

The story finds Annie in a mental institution four years after the Titanic tragedy unable to cope with the horror she has undergone. She is released by her doctor and reluctantly manages to obtain a job as a nurse on the Britannic finding an aptitude she doesn’t know she has to do the work. In inspecting the wounded men under her care, she comes upon Mark Fletcher. While on the Titanic she had met Mark, who was a passenger in one of the cabins she attended. She had developed a crush on him and in a wild moment has a one night stand. Her feelings come out and her imaginings lead her into thinking that Mark was in love with her and this feeling just has to be rekindled.

Katsu changes the actual destruction of the Britannic from sinking by submarines to something else based on the love Annie thinks she can rekindle with Mark. The novel is absolutely compelling, grabbing the reader and bringing him or her into another era and a possible link into the macabre. I certainly hope that Alma Katsu comes out with her next book soon and indicate my recommendation to pick it up as soon as published to enjoy.

3/2020 Paul Lane

THE DEEP by Alma Katsu. G.P. Putnam’s Sons (March 10, 2020). ISBN: 978-0525537908. 432p.

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A LONG PETAL OF THE SEA by Isabel Allende

February 7, 2020

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From the publisher:

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the author of The House of the Spirits, this epic novel spanning decades and crossing continents follows two young people as they flee the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War in search of a place to call home.

“One of the most richly imagined portrayals of the Spanish Civil War to date, and one of the strongest and most affecting works in [Isabel Allende’s] long career.”—The New York Times Book Review

In the late 1930s, civil war grips Spain. When General Franco and his Fascists succeed in overthrowing the government, hundreds of thousands are forced to flee in a treacherous journey over the mountains to the French border. Among them is Roser, a pregnant young widow, who finds her life intertwined with that of Victor Dalmau, an army doctor and the brother of her deceased love. In order to survive, the two must unite in a marriage neither of them desires.

Together with two thousand other refugees, they embark on the SS Winnipeg, a ship chartered by the poet Pablo Neruda, to Chile: “the long petal of sea and wine and snow.” As unlikely partners, they embrace exile as the rest of Europe erupts in world war. Starting over on a new continent, their trials are just beginning, and over the course of their lives, they will face trial after trial. But they will also find joy as they patiently await the day when they will be exiles no more. Through it all, their hope of returning to Spain keeps them going. Destined to witness the battle between freedom and repression as it plays out across the world, Roser and Victor will find that home might have been closer than they thought all along.

A masterful work of historical fiction about hope, exile, and belonging, A Long Petal of the Sea shows Isabel Allende at the height of her powers.


Isabel Allende presents her readers with what may very well be her masterpiece; an epic story of people caught up in world events and living through tumultuous times. Moving through the Spanish civil war and then events in Chile as they occur in the twentieth century the author takes hold of her readers and does not ease up until the book ends.

Roser, a young lady coming of age, and Victor Dalmau, who is an army doctor and the brother of Roser’s sweetheart, are the central protagonists of the story. Events occurring during the civil war breaking out in Spain in 1936 first throw the two together. Francisco Franco and his fascists lead Spain away from its government with a revolution establishing the long term rule of a dictatorship. The author captures the essence of what the uprising was with descriptions of the horrors and excesses of war and the depravity of Franco as he assumes total power in the country. It then becomes necessary for thousands to flee Spain if they are not to be killed. Roser, who is pregnant with her lover’s baby, and Victor travel away from Europe together with their destination the Latin American country of Chile. En route, they learn that Chilean immigrant visas are most likely to be given to families and decide to marry to ensure their entrance to Chile. They do so vowing to divorce as soon as feasible and of course when Victor’s brother, Roser’s lover arrives from Spain.

The second part of the book deals with changes in Chile during most of the twentieth century starting with the second world war taking place in Europe and Africa and then the country’s development going forward. Roser and Victor’s characters are very well fleshed out as are many of the other people taking part in the story. The rule by Salvador Allende is outlined and due to the fact that Isabel’s father was a first cousin to him his treatment is favorable. His overthrow and assassination are not blamed on his dictatorial conduct but on other malevolent factors. This is the author’s opinion and does nothing to harm the overall story.

The growth and development of Roser and Victor and their personal changes during this period are brilliantly described by Allende. The reader will easily follow and understand the reasoning behind their actions and capture the shifts as time and events go forward. Totally a five-star book and a milestone for Isabel Allende.

2/2020 Paul Lane

A LONG PETAL OF THE SEA by Isabel Allende. Ballantine Books (January 21, 2020). ISBN 978-1984820150. 336p.

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PROJECT DUCHESS by Sabrina Jeffries

February 6, 2020

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Duke Dynasty, Book 1

From the publisher:

From New York Times bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries comes a sparkling new series about an oft-widowed mother’s grown children, who blaze through society in their quest for the truth about their fathers . . . and in the process find that love just might conquer all . . .

A series of stepfathers and a difficult childhood have left Fletcher “Grey” Pryde, 5th Duke of Greycourt, with a guarded heart, enviable wealth, and the undeserved reputation of a rogue. Grey’s focus on expanding his dukedom allows him little time to find a wife. But when his mother is widowed yet again and he meets the charmingly unconventional woman managing his stepfather’s funeral, he’s shocked to discover how much they have in common. Still, Grey isn’t interested in love, no matter how pretty, or delightfully outspoken, the lady . . .

Beatrice Wolfe gave up on romance long ago, and the arrogant Duke of Greycourt with his rakish reputation isn’t exactly changing her mind. Then Grey agrees to assist his grief-stricken mother with her latest “project”: schooling spirited, unfashionable Beatrice for her debut. Now that Beatrice is seeing through Grey’s charms to his wounded heart, she’s having trouble keeping him at arm’s length. But once Grey starts digging into her family’s secrets, she must decide whether her loyalties lie with her family . . . or with the man whose lessons capture her heart . . .


Sabrina Jeffries writes a good, steamy romance so I was very happy to see she is starting a new series. Because it is the first book in the series, there are a lot of characters, but she does a good job of introducing them without overwhelming. Grey is our hero, and he is a man with a difficult past. Even dukes can have baggage, (apparently to this day!) and his troubled childhood has left him wary of letting anyone in. But when he meets Beatrice, her refreshing way of speaking her mind disarms him.

Beatrice has been living out in the country in pretty much isolation, other than her extended family and the help. She and Grey have much in common, they both lost family members, and both have little use for pretense. But Grey’s mother, the thrice widowed dowager duchess, is determined to have Beatrice come out along with her daughter, Grey’s sister. To that end, while they are in mourning, they take the opportunity to teach the girls the graces, and subterfuge, that is necessary to succeed in London’s high society.

Grey is determined to never lose his heart and plans on marrying eventually, but in the way of much of the ton, purely for business reasons, for lack of a better term. But he is enraptured with Beatrice, fight it as he may. Not to mention Grey’s half-brother suspects Beatrice’s brother of killing two of their mother’s husbands. Yes, it is a bit complicated but that’s half the fun. A bit of mystery, some steamy sex, lots of secrets, and a big family all combine to create a terrific start to this new series. If you enjoy your romances historical, quick, fun, and sexy, then read this book. I’m very glad I did.

2/2020 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

PROJECT DUCHESS by Sabrina Jeffries. Zebra (June 25, 2019).  ISBN 978-1420148558. 400p.

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HUNTING FOR A HIGHLANDER by Lynsay Sands

February 4, 2020

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Highland Brides, Book 8

From the publisher:

Four Buchanan brothers have found their brides…only three more to go in this scintillating romance from New York Times bestselling author Lynsay Sands…

Lady Dwyn Innes feels utterly out of place among the eligible women who’ve descended on Buchanan Keep, vying for the attention of the last unmarried brothers. She isn’t long-legged and slender like her sisters, or flirtatious and wily like other lasses. Since her betrothed died, Dwyn has resigned herself to becoming an old maid. Yet a chance encounter with a stranger in the orchard awakens her to a new world of sensation and possibility…

After weeks away, Geordie Buchanan returns to find his home swarming with potential brides, thanks to his loving but interfering family. But one lass in particular draws his attention from the moment he spies her climbing a tree. Lady Dwyn is not nearly as plain as she thinks. Her lush figure and eager kisses delight him, as does her honesty. But the real test lies ahead: eliminating a hidden enemy, so that he and Dwyn can seal their Highland passion with a vow.


This series started out hit or miss with me, but two in a row have been really fun reads so I’m on board. This book has a lot of humor, mostly centering around the heroine’s large boobs, the low cut gowns her sisters are forcing her to wear, and said boobs’ propensity to pop out on a fairly regular basis. Despite her forced lack of decorum, or maybe because of it, I really liked Lady Dwynn. She is honest and kind and empathetic, and Geordie always really likes her. Unfortunately, he had told his older brother that he has no intention of marrying, which Dwynn overheard, but things have a way of changing.

This is a steamy love story, and as in all the books in this series (at least the ones I’ve read), there is also a bit of suspense. The women who are vying to be brides for the single men also have other demands that must be met, chief of which is making the husband heir to whatever lands they own. The problem for Dwynn is that they have a mentally ill neighbor who has a vendetta against her, but also wants the land. The book takes a dark turn towards the end but of course, there is the guarantee of a happy ending. Thank goodness. I need my happy endings!

This was a really fun and sexy read and I couldn’t put it down. Looking forward to the next book in the series.

2/2020 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

HUNTING FOR A HIGHLANDER by Lynsay Sands. Avon (January 28, 2020).  ISBN 978-0062855374. 384p.

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THE PRINCESS PLAN by Julia London

January 23, 2020

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 A Royal Wedding Series, Book 1

From the publisher:

Princes have pomp and glory—not crushes on commoners

Nothing gets the tongues of London’s high society wagging like a good scandal. And when the personal secretary of the visiting Prince Sebastian of Alucia is found murdered, it’s all anyone can talk about, including Eliza Tricklebank. Her unapologetic gossip gazette has benefited from an anonymous tip about the crime, prompting Sebastian to take an interest in playing detective—and an even greater interest in Eliza.

With a trade deal on the line and mounting pressure to secure a noble bride, there’s nothing more salacious than a prince dallying with a commoner. Sebastian finds Eliza’s contrary manner as frustrating as it is seductive, but they’ll have to work together if they’re going to catch the culprit. And when things heat up behind closed doors, it’s the prince who’ll have to decide what comes first—his country or his heart.


This is the introduction to a new series by the fabulous Julia London. It is set in England, but the prince is from Alucia, whatever that is. The political machinations are really what this book is all about, but it is the relationship between Eliza and Sebastian that brings the romance. Everyone loves a good scandal, so a murder in the highest echelons of society keep the gossip going. Eliza is smart, and it is her intellect that really attracts Sebastian.

The secondary characters are so well developed, especially Eliza’s family, including her father, who is blind. Eliza had been badly hurt when she was younger and is determined to never put herself in that situation again. She has declared herself a spinster and is happy with that. She is brash and outspoken and I loved her! But she also can’t help falling for Sebastian, even though she knows that can never be as he is upfront with her about his marriage prospects, which are entirely political. Of course, there has to be a happy ending, and Sebastian is smart, too, and he finagles a way to make that happen.

Lots of suspense, lots of humor and some steamy sex make for a terrific read. I’m looking forward to whatever comes next.

1/2020 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

THE PRINCESS PLAN by Julia London. HQN; Original edition (November 19, 2019).  ISBN 978-1335041531. 400 p.

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TO BED THE BRIDE by Karen Ranney

December 13, 2019

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All for Love Trilogy, Book 3

From the publisher:

New York Times Bestselling Author Karen Ranney’s captivating series concludes with a tale of opposites whose attraction scorches a trail from the Highlands to the glittering halls of London—and courts scandal at every turn . . .

Politics has introduced MP Logan McKnight to many fascinating people, but the lady he encounters on the lands bordering his ancestral Scottish home outshines them all. Eleanor Craig of Hearthmere seats a Thoroughbred like a queen, knows as much about world events as any of his colleagues—and is engaged to one of the worst men Logan knows. She also seems lonely, so Logan brings her a friend. Thus should their acquaintance end, yet it’s only just begun.

The puppy Logan delivers is every bit as irresistible as the man himself. How could this stranger sense the isolation Eleanor suffers among her scheming, snobbish extended family and fiancé who control her life? It’s even worse in London—until she begins meeting Logan secretly in a secluded park. Their passionate connection frees Eleanor, body and soul. But discovery threatens disgrace—or worse.


Eleanor lost her mother as an infant, and her father as a young child. He leaves her their estate in Scotland with the proviso that her Uncle move there to take care of her. He brings his wife and children, and they remain there until her uncle dies when she is 17 years old. Her aunt immediately moves them all to London, marries a wealthy man, and convinces the solicitor to just allow Eleanor to visit for a month every year.

Eleanor is engaged to Michael, the Earl of Westcott and she really has no idea why he chose her. Her father always stressed how important family is, and she knows her family wants her to marry the Earl. He is a good catch, so she agrees to marry him. But her fiance shortens her visit home to two weeks.

Eleanor returns home, knowing in her heart that she may not be allowed back to visit again. Eleanor and Logan have a rocky start. They meet while she is out riding and finds herself surrounded by sheep. Thinking he is the shepherd, she is condescending to him until she manages to get through. Eleanor doesn’t think much of the shepherd, but Logan can’t get her out of his mind. He gives her a puppy that she really doesn’t want but disappears before she can return the dog. She names him Bruce and I have to say, the best part of the first half of the book was the dog.

There seems to be too much time spent on Eleanor’s thoughts and way too much telling, not showing as the relationship between Eleanor and Logan grows. It seems like she decided to like him after she finds out that he is not a shepherd, but is an MP in the House of Commons, representing his part of Scotland. He is shocked to find out that she is engaged to the Earl of Westcott, an arrogant, selfish man that Logan can’t stand.

This book moved slowly for at least the first half, but the last few chapters made up for it. When Eleanor realizes she can’t marry the Earl and tells him, he refuses to allow her to break their engagement. Her aunt tells her she has no choice, she must marry the Earl, and what happens after that is just shocking. I don’t want to give anything away! Just know that Eleanor and Logan get their happily ever after, despite the enormous obstacles in their way.

While I’m glad they got together, the ending felt a bit abrupt. I would have liked an epilogue or something. All in all, this was just an okay read for me.

12/19 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

TO BED THE BRIDE by Karen Ranney. Avon (November 26, 2019).  ISBN 978-0062841087. 384p.

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THE GERMAN HOUSE by Annette Hess

December 12, 2019

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Announced as her first published book, aside from many screenplays, Annette Hess gives us a memorable, riveting emotional roller coaster of a read. Pick this up and become mesmerized from page one and when finished it will be evident that a major literary force has entered the field with a decided bang.

The action is centered around the 1963 trials in Frankfurt, Germany of war criminals that ran the Auschwitz death camp during WWII. Eva Bruhns is a young woman with only faint memories of the war now two generations behind the world. She is working for a temporary employment agency as a translator when asked if she will fill in for a professional translator that cannot get a German visa in time for the trial’s opening. The trials are scheduled to start shortly and cannot be delayed awaiting the regular translator. Eva takes the job and becomes immersed in a life-changing position lasting several months. The main thrust of the action is her literally coming-of-age due to her work and thoughts as the court action goes on.

On the personal side, Eva is awaiting and expecting her suitor Jurgen Schoormann to ask her father for permission to marry her. Jurgen is the son and heir of a wealthy family who works in the family business and has ideas that a wife should be subservient to her husband. Doubts about the wisdom of marrying Jurgen enter her mind. In addition, due to facts coming out at the trial, Eva begins to question her mother’s and father’s silence about what they did during the war. Where were they and what did they do? And why is it never discussed?

Hess does not excuse the horrors perpetrated by the Nazis but does bring up via her characterizations the possibility that orders were followed since death or imprisonment could be the price of disobeying commands. The complexity of the mental anguish involved is not possible to understand without the experiences of people caught in an insurmountable conundrum with no way out of the situation without suffering something horrible. Does she make her case? Read the book and decide. If nothing else take part in a superb literary experience.

12/19 Paul Lane

THE GERMAN HOUSE by Annette Hess. HarperVia (December 12, 2019). ISBN 978-0008359867. 336p.

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THE ALMANACK by Martine Bailey

December 11, 2019

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Bailey has given her readers a veritable cornucopia of ideas and well-researched facts set in the England of the mid 1750s. The author has painted a picture of another era with all the problems, ideas, dirt and filth present in that day and age.

Tabitha Hart has left her home in the town of Netherlea to seek her fortune in London. There she made a passable living as a lady of the street until her mother sends her a message to return home because she is dying. When Tabitha reaches her mother’s house she finds that the lady has already passed away and under mysterious circumstances. She finds and opens her mother’s almanack, which at that point in time is a book that many people rich and poor buy each year to help them with their year-round planning.

As an aid to finding out what happened, the author has prefaced every chapter with a riddle taken from almanacks of the time as well as a daily message advising what is expected to happen each of the days. This practice opens up additional customs of the era under discussion as well as providing an idea of how people thought and behaved.

The novel is indeed a vibrant picture of another time and makes it possible for today’s readers to allow themselves to slip into that era and enjoy an interesting read.

12/19 Paul Lane

THE ALMANACK by Martine Bailey. Severn House Publishers; First World Publication edition (May 1, 2019). ISBN 978-0727888631. 304p.

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THE ROGUE TO RUIN by Vivienne Lorret

December 10, 2019

Misadventures in Matchmaking, Book 3

From the publisher:

The Bourne Matrimonial Agency has one rule:

Never fall in love with the client.

Which shouldn’t be a problem when one’s faking an engagement to the rogue across the street . . .

Ainsley Bourne needs the family business to succeed. But one obstacle stands in her way—Reed Sterling, the huge, handsome, former prize fighter and owner of the gaming hall across the street. His scandalous customers scare off all her marriage-minded patrons, and since the devilish brute has no intention of relocating, she sets out to ruin his unsavory establishment. Yet when a vile suitor from her past reappears, Ainsley hastily claims an attachment to the first man who comes to mind . . . Mr. Sterling, to be exact.

Reed doesn’t know who is more surprised by Miss Bourne’s declaration. She clearly hates him, and he’d never admit their arguments simmer with unrequited attraction. Something about the pleading look in her eyes calls to Reed, and against his better judgment, he quickly plays the part of the besotted fiancé.

Pretending to be in love requires a convincing charade. But with each tantalizing touch and every scandalous kiss, Ainsley starts to wonder if Reed was ever really the enemy at all.


This author was new to me. The book started out slowly; in fact, I started it and kept putting it down until I got about a quarter of the way through. Then I read it the rest all the way through and ultimately enjoyed it. The plot was fairly predictable, the ever-popular trope of enemies to lovers, and it worked. There was also a bit of suspense. Ainsley had been betrothed to another man, and she ended it because he was abusive. He remarried, but when his wife died, he came looking for Ainsley again. And was not very pleasant, to say the least.

Reed was a great character. He is a commoner who made a fortune by fighting, boxing of sorts I suppose. But while he has retired from the ring, there are opponents who still wish to fight him. He is also thoughtful and smart, and very intuitive about people in general, but especially about Ainsley.

There are some obstacles along the way to happily ever after. Even marriage doesn’t resolve everything. I liked those twists and that is what kept me turning the pages for sure. I will look for the earlier books in the series. Ainsley has two sisters who are married, so they probably had their stories told in the earlier books. Since I haven’t read the earlier books, I don’t know if they should be read in order or if it doesn’t matter. These characters are fairly closely aligned, so it might have been the little knowledge I was lacking that made the beginning of this book so slow. I will find out!

12/19 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

THE ROGUE TO RUIN by Vivienne Lorret. Avon (July 30, 2019).  ISBN 978-0062685520. 400p.

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