Friday, August 26, 2011

On Beelzebub: A Review of Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase

I'm not going to lie, I bought Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase for my Kindle because it was on sale--for $2, which can't be beat. I didn't believe everyone who told me how wonderful it is, I just wanted to review some more historical romance. And the verdict is, this book is wonderful!

After a traumatic childhood, Lord Dain has carefully cultivated his reputation as a dangerous villain. When Jessica's dim-witted brother falls into Dain's circle, she is determined to pull him out of it. She travels to Paris to confront Dain, and sparks fly between them. Though he's sworn off respectable women, Dain comes to the conclusion that he must have Jess at whatever cost.

 This book had so many of the elements I look for in romance, from snappy dialogue, to steamy sex, to multifaceted characters. The simplest scenes, such as Dain unbuttoning Jessica's glove, become vividly romantic episodes that stick with the reader throughout the whole book. The style is simple yet engrossing. The settings fit the changing mood of the story well. All of this comes together to make one very satisfying book

Dain often behaves in ways that would normally put me off of a hero. He's stubborn, selfish, and purposefully cruel.  But the author is careful to build the reader's sympathy with him, as well as to show his softer sides. Yes, he's surly and villainous and unreasonable, but he's also incredibly sweet. I was even more surprised to find myself really loving Jessica. I can be pretty exacting on heroines, because I like to see strong women. Jess is strong, self possessed, adaptive, and very clever. She's not afraid of Dain in the slightest, and handles his moods we ease. I loved them as a couple, and I very much enjoyed their journey toward happily ever after.

I can't say too much more without spoiling the plot. I really loved this book. Definitely check it out, especially if you like historical romance. 5 stars.

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