Lady Olivia Shea has been left a bride in name only, by her brand new husband, Edmund Carlisle, who takes her inheritance and runs, leaving her to pick up the pieces and try to continue running her Paris perfume empire. She wants her money back and heads to London to confront the cad, only the cad she confronts is his twin brother, Samson Carlisle, The Duke of Durham.
They join forces to catch his brother. Through all sorts of twists and turns, Livi and Sam discover she's the victim of an elaborate con. With a backdrop of Victorian Frances perfume industry Ms. Ashworth avoids Eloisa James' pitfalls of overwhelming the reader with peripheral information.
The tension between Livi and Sam is great, the story gradually builds and is very entertaining, yet there is some inconsistencies in the character development of Sam that I found a little frustrating when past relationships come to light toward the end of the book. But, this may be nit picking on my part.
Overall, this is a good and well paced read. Better than just "good" but not quite "very good" or a keeper, but definitely worth reading.
The Marcelli Bride by Susan Mallery
There is nothing more annoying than picking up a series 4 books in, that's what I get for not reading the entire blurb before buying.
First-daughter, Darcy Jensen, is in need of protection, she has been kidnapped once, by mistake the kidnappers wanted her "perfect" sister Lauren. Joe Larson's needs to lay low for a while if he wants to save his naval career and has been approached to help protect the President's daughter. At this point he has no choice, and a large Secret Service team sets up shop on his families vineyard and winery.
Since I haven't read the first 3 books in this series, I don't know Joe Larson is actually Joe Marcelli, a son given up for adoption when his parents were still in high school, pressure from their families pushed them to give him up, and the family spends 30 years regretting this mistake. His parents get married and then go on to have 4 daughters.
Interesting family dynamics on both sides drive this book, but I find the plot set up unbelievable and that colors much of what I read. How likely is it that the Secret Service is going to hide the President's daughter in the middle of a working vineyard and winery.
Don't get me wrong, the writing is very good, the book completely stands alone and even though we see all the sisters at one time or another, I don't have an overwhelming urge to go back and read the other books. I probably will because the characters are interesting, not because I feel this book left any backstory untold, which is very good on Ms. Mallery's part.
A good, fairly fast paced story. If you can suspend belief when it comes to the plot set up, you'll probably like it.
Though I swore I wouldn't be buying much this month, I've added 3 more books to my TBR pile:
His Wicked Kiss and The Bachelor Trap are because I have absolutely no willpower and bought them. And, Ride The Fire showed up in the mail from Paperback Swap, thanks AngieW.
Have a good one, maybe I'll get back on sometime tomorrow.