Lisa/Rogues Under the Covers

 Romance reader. I love historical romance and smart, sexy contemporaries.

Tempting a Devil (The Saint's Devils #2) - Samantha Kane Lady Harriet Mercer is desperate to be publicly ruined in the hopes that her blackmailer will finally leave her and her son alone. Already having a loveless marriage she has no plans to enter into another one and if her pristine reputation is ruined, the blackmailer will not accept her and keep her secret just that, a secret. When she attempts to seduce her old childhood friend, Roger Templeton, she believes she has found the perfect man. Roger is a devil and has no qualms about ruination...until it involves Harry. He finds her excuses about who is trying to kidnap her son flimsy and refuses to bed her. So let the taunting, teasing and plotting begin! The closer that Roger gets to Harry, the more he sees that something is lurking behind Harry's cheerful facade and he is determined to find out what and help her. But having been burned in the past by a woman makes him a bit leery of entering into the type of relationship Harry wants and she must find a way to show she is different than everyone thinks her to be. With the blackmailer closing in, can Harry and Roger find the path to happiness together?This is the second book I have read by Samantha Kane and it was another enjoyable experience! I really enjoy her use of subtle wit and smoking heat while dealing with true emotions and putting a fresh twist on a topic used many times before. Harry was a delightful heroine: intelligent, outspoken, practical, stubborn, shrewd and feisty and she was a perfect match for the kind-hearted, loyal, witty, handsome devil Roger. Roger is a man with no money and no real connections and sort of makes his way through life on his charming actions but Harry finally makes him realize that he has nothing to offer a woman if he is still searching for himself. I did think his reasons for trying to keep Harry at bay were a little weak and I wished he would have told her the truth but it all worked out in the end. Harry, for her part, also could have been more truthful but the truth always has a way of revealing itself in due course and it worked well for this story. Childhood friends to lovers is always a favorite storyline and it was well done in this romance and I am very eager for more from Samantha Kane who has the sizzling, smart, intriguing storytelling down! 4 starseARC provided by LoveSwept (Random House) via netgalley

Falling for the Backup (Assassins, #3.5)

Falling for the Backup (Assassins, #3.5) - Toni Aleo This was my first time reading Toni Aleo and I have had my eye on this series so I decided to try a novella first to see if I liked her voice and it was a winner for me! Jordan and Aynslee meet up on a plane and the connection is strong but then Jordan just leaves without getting her number. After a rough breakup and uncertainty in his hockey career, Jordan doesn't want to start a relationship when he might be moving away but instead of saying any of this, he seems indifferent but in an adorable way to the reader. More chance meetings with the sparks flying until they finally combust. Jordan and Aynslee together were perfect, adorable and just a bit sweet. Loved the family dynamic and the sports aspect wasn't overwhelming at all. This was a very well written novella that really worked for me, especially considering the couple first met in the beginning. Loved the wit (there is one scene between Jordan and her parents that will have you laughing like crazy!) and loved the romance. I can't wait to read the whole series now! Sexy fun! 4 stars
Never Love a Scoundrel (Secrets & Scandals #5) - Darcy Burke Lord Jason Lockwood has his life turned upside down in the past when his father favored his half brother, who was illegitimate. After an altercation with him leaves him physically scarred, the worst gossip in town spreads vicious lies and it makes his mother seem mad and him as well. Now shunned by society, he delights in his debauchery by throwing vice parties and seemingly fitting in in his new role in the ton. Then he meets the lovely Lady Lydia Prewitt and just when he thinks he might be willing to change, he finds out she is the niece of said worst gossip in town. Trying to believe that Lydia is different takes some time and with their growing love being forbidden by Lydia's aunt, it seems like a long and bumpy road to their happiness especially as Jason is trying to mend fences with his half brother who has a very rocky past.The latest addition to Darcy Burke's Secrets & Scandals series is another winner for me. Full of the healing power of love, a forbidden love and overcoming the past to grasp the future. This story fits very true with the present day and how gossip can really upset a person's life. I thought the whole subject was handled very well and I also liked that Jason did not immediately fall for Lydia after he found out about her gossiping aunt. Lydia proves her loyalty to Jason and she has her own problems to overcome with her bitter aunt and her need for friends, a home, a family. She is aware of her presence as an air-headed gossip but Jason learns the truth about her and in return, she helps set him free from his demons of his past. Jason's transformation for dissolute rake to upstanding charmer was also very well done and I was glad it was not a complete one-eighty so quickly. It took time and patience and in the end everything played out as it should. His relationship with his half brother added some depth and set up the next book very well and I can't wait to finally have Ethan (Jagger) story! Darcy Burke is an author to watch and each book I read of hers gets better and better and I feel she is an excellent storyteller and her romances are ones I would read again and again. 4 sigh worthy stars

Flirting with Disaster (Camelot, #3)

Flirting with Disaster (Camelot, #3) - Ruthie Knox Sexy, fun,charming and a bit unique is what I have come to expect from Ruthie Knox and Flirting with Disaster is no exception. We have Sean: World's Manliest Geek according to his heroine, Katie. He is exactly that. I adored him and all his **minor spoiler** stuttering, confused glory. He had a bit of a rough childhood with an overachiever mom and it has left him with some unresolved feelings. Katie was also the type of girl you just adore: able to speak her mind and handle the rejection (though it does leave her a bit torn up inside), kind hearted and able to handle whatever is thrown her way. Trying to get past a failed marriage and get a step up in her career she tries to help a low grade rock star find a stalker. And that was probably the only bit of this sassy romance that dragged a bit for me. While I cared about what happened with Jonah, I also just wanted more time with Sean and Katie because together, they were delightful. I started with a smile on my face and I had a nice goofy grin numerous times watching these two stubble there way to their happily ever after. Ruthie Knox can not write fast enough for me! 4 stars
It Happened One Midnight - Julie Anne Long What I liked: Jonathan Redmond: He was strong, sexy and much deeper and smarter than most people, including his own family, give him credit for. When his father gives him an ultimatum-marry or lose the family money-he scoffs it off until the lovely Tommy captures his attention. When he learns the true nature of what Tommy is dealing with, he can not help but be drawn in and help her, protect her...fall in love with her.Thomsina de Ballesteros: Tommy holds many secrets close to her and has built up a persona that London believes. Is she a courtesan? Does she have Spanish princess blood in her? Beneath all that is the scars from her past and running into Jonathan one midnight changes her life forever. The romance: Tommy and Jonathan just connect right away and it was such a delight to watch it grow into a deep, permanent love. Jonathan handles his arrogant father in a good way and it really showed his depth of feelings for Tommy.The mystery aspect: I'm a little bit vague here since Tommy's secrets come out in their own time and they add a deeper undertone to this story. I loved how the mysterious gypsy reading Jonathan receives in the beginning comes true in a most unexpected way!Family: I loved Jonathan and his expecting sister Violet together. It added humor and heart which I enjoyed.What I did not like;Not much really but I did feel like the romance almost moved a bit too slow. Nitpicky I know, but I felt my attention shifting a little too easily.Overall, another solid winner from Julie Anne Long in a very strong historical romance series. This story could easily be read on its own but it will make you anxious to read previous ones and new ones yet to come. Wit, charm, true love, heat, family with a deeper undertone that is sure to touch your heart, It Happened One Midnight is sure to please historical romance fans!eARC provided by Avon Book via edelweiss
The Perks of Being a Beauty - Manda Collins Miss Amelia Snow, noted mean-spirited beauty of the ton, has had a turn of fate. After her mother dies and she is left with no money, she takes on a job as a companion where she tries to blend in and help her charge find a good match. When a childhood friend arrives at a country house party, she remembers how she broke his heart and how he has always had a piece of hers. However, Amelia turned into a different woman after she went to London with her mother, who always told Amelia that all other girls were her competition, and Lord Quetin Fortescue is unaware of the pain and humiliation she caused in the ton. Even though Amelia has made amends with the woman she hurt, she still has not forgiven herself and is a bit hard about life. A rainstorm forces this couple to seek shelter together and this, of course, leads to a good heart to heart and some heated moments. Can Quetion show Ameila she is not the woman of her past and ready to move forward, together? With the humor, depth and a dash of heat I have come to expect from Manda Collins, The Perks of Being a Beauty is a story of forgiveness, healing and heart. 4 stars eARC provided by St Martins Press via Netgalley
The Mad Earl's Bride - Loretta Chase When Gwendolyn Adams is asked to marry a man considered mad and soon to die, she takes it in stride and accepts the offer. By marrying the Earl of Rawnsley she will gain his name and position which will make it easier for her to accomplish her dream of opening a hospital. What she does not expect is to be drawn to this 'mad' earl. She researches his condition, and that of his late mother, and attempts to help him find ways to cure him. During there discussions together, this couple find a type of love they never thought possible. But with Dorian certain he is going to die, he tries to distance himself from Gwen while at the same time, encouraging her to discover as much as she can about medincine. He learned at a young age to keep his feelings to himself so these emotions he feels for the steady, level headed Gwen are new and a bit terrifying. The truth of Dorian's disease is revealed and watching this couple come to the new terms was enjoyable. Well written, emotional (the storyline is a bit dark) and sexy with a bit of humor, this novella was a treat to read! 4 starseARC provided by Avon Books via edelweiss
A Family Affair - Jennifer Wenn This was a very lovely romance and a strong debut and start of what is sure to be a lively, romantic series from Jennifer Wenn! Lady Francesca Darling has known she would marry Devlin Ross, Duke of Hereford, from the tender age of five. Not having seen him for thirteen years, she still harbors her young crush and when she runs into him again at her debutante ball, her feelings come crashing back and intensify into an adult longing. Devlin has decided long ago not to marry and be the kind of father his father was to him, cold and cruel but something about Fanny makes him reconsider. Maybe he can marry and be happy but then tuck her away in the countryside with their children and stay away....or maybe Fanny has her own intentions and will never let that happen. Watching how this all resolves itself, with plenty of help from her loving, interfering family is a delight to read!I enjoy stories that have large, lovingly meddlesome families and Fanny is part of a wonderful one! The first female born in years, she is spoiled and indulged but it has shaped her into an honest young lady with a kind, generous heart. I enjoyed watching all the interactions between her parents, brothers and uncles and how close they are were with each other. This is a huge adjustment for Devlin who was an only child and is not used to the boisterousness of a large family. Even though he has been friends with Fanny's uncle for years, it is still a hard adjustment and he handles it badly at first and it causes quite a strain on Fanny and Devlin's relationship. His fear of being a rotten father is also handled well and I admired how he came to realize how happy he can be as a father and husband and not just as a husband. Warm, sexy and delightful, I thoroughly enjoyed this romance and am looking forward to more of this wonderful family finding their happily-ever-afters! 4 starsReview copy provided by author, thanks!

The Secret Life of Lady Julia

The Secret Life of Lady Julia - Lecia Cornwall I have really enjoyed all of Lecia Cornwall's previous works but this one just did not click with me as much. It features a plot with political intrigue and that is just not a plot I enjoy personally. I also felt like the romance between Julia and Thomas needed a bit more attention. After a passionate meeting in the beginning, they do not speak to each other again until half way into the story. There were a lot of people and names and it got a bit confusing and overwhelming for me and I would have just like a bit more time focused on the couple and their personal issues. After all, Julia has a very large secret that Thomas does not find out about until the very end and I felt like it was all glossed over a bit too easily.However, I did really enjoy the different locale we saw. Quite a bit is set in Vienna which was refreshing and exciting and the attention to detail was very well done but a bit overwhelming for me. So while this did not work for me, it will appeal to romance fans who enjoy the political angle with some mystery and heat. But for me, 3 1/2 stars this time.eARC provided by Avon Books via edelweiss
Any Duchess Will Do - Tessa Dare I just adore this series! I love the fact that I am laughing within the first couple of pages and that is exactly what I was doing, reading the interaction between Griffin York, Duke of Halford, and his mother. His mother who has taken him to Spindle Cove to find a wife (she wants grandbabies desperately). To thwart her, he chooses the girl that stumbles into the room covered in sugar...a barmaid. If she can turn Pauline Simms into a duchess within a week, he will marry her. However, he is not going to fall in love with the smart-mouthed woman. He is going to overlook the fact that he can talk with her, really just talk. He is going to help her achieve her dream of opening her own shop...even if returning to Spindle Cove to open her dream separates them. Because a duke can not fall in love with a barmaid and be happy...right?Loved it, plain and simple. There is something magical about Tessa Dare's writing and she can not write fast enough to make me happy! I adored watching the romance and friendship grow between Griff and Pauline. She talks to him like he is a normal person and not a duke and her boldness and proud demeanor appeal to the generous, decent, good-hearted Griff. Pauline can see that Griff is burying something very hurtful from his past and it has caused him to change. He has not told his mother, with whom he has a good, though not talkative, relationship with and the distance is putting a strain on things. Pauline, for her part, knows she will never be a duchess but she can not help falling for Griff but even after she does, she knows there can be no true future for them together. I thought the difference in class situation was handled well in the end. Yes it was all tied up neatly in a bow, but it was a pretty, sigh worthy bow. Every time I read a Tessa Dare romance, I know I am going to laugh, sigh, cheer and fall in love with the characters she has created and Any Duchess Will Do is the perfect example of this! A perfect romantic delight! 4 1/2 starseARC provided by Avon Books via edelweiss
Secrets of a Runaway Bride - Valerie Bowman Delightful. Really enjoyed it!4 1/2 stars

What a Wicked Earl Wants

What a Wicked Earl Wants - Vicky Dreiling The start of Vicky Dreiling's new series is fun, sexy and romantic! Laura Davenport is worried when she receives a letter from her stepson's guardian, a man who has taken no interest in her stepson in years. When he suddenly shows up to take him away, she panics and informs him she in engaged and the man has taken a personal interest in her stepson's upbringing. Andrew Carrington, Earl of Bellingham, never imagined that his good deed of returning a flask being used by a wayward lad would get him engaged. Yet seeing the desperation of Laura, and the way the guardian treats her, his protective nature kicks in and he plays along with the charade. What he doesn't count on his Laura and her stepson becoming like a family to him, the one thing he will not have in his life again after the sudden death of his own family. When circumstances change, his gentlemanly nature comes back into force but Laura is not sure she wants what he offers...she wants more. Will Bell be able to find the words to express his true feelings before Laura is gone for good?Laura and Bell's romance was a fun journey to read. I really adored Andrew. He was haughty and blunt but that was all due to the fact he was afraid to let himself fall in love again because he didn't want to lose those he loved again, like his mother, father and brother. When he realized he had recreated a family with Laura, he, of course, reacts badly. He knows Laura needs to be needed and he is not sure he can do that for her. The romance grows from a friendship into something more and is very sigh-worthy. I liked how Laura's stepson is very much part of the story and hopefully we will see his own story someday, after he grows up a bit more. Bell's two friends add a bit more humor to the story and I also look forward to their stories and them growing up a bit as they seemed just a dash immature yet for me. Overall, a delicious start to a sexy, witty new series! 4 starseARC provided by Forever via netgalley

Once Upon a Tower

Once Upon a Tower - Eloisa James Gowan Stoughton of Craigiever, Duke of Kinross, is organized and precise and everything follows a routine, just as it has for years. Knowing it is time to marry, when he meets the lovely Lady Edith Gilchrist and dances with her and finds her serene and likeable, he promptly asks for her hand in marriage. Edie, who was suffering from a high fever and was not quite herself the day of the ball, or after when she agreed to the marriage, finds herself betrothed to a man she knows nothing about. They exchange a few letters and Edie finds herself vastly relieved to find out Gowan has a sense of humor and that they seem to rub along well together. Passion quickly blooms and after they marry...disaster strikes. While they are compatible outside the bedroom, inside the bedroom is another story. Edie finds herself reaching out to her stepmother and when the truth of the matter reaches back to Gowan, tempers explode and hurtful words are spoken and leave a damaging impact. Determined to teach her husband a lesson, Edie retreats to the castles tower and awaits her husband. Will Gown realize how much his words hurt and help bridge the gap with Edie?Eloisa James' take on Rapunzel, with a bit of Romeo and Juliet thrown in as well, was a delight to read, plain and simple. The build up to Edie locking herself in the tower was very well done and thought out. I loved how straightforward she was to not just Gowan but his regimented staff as well. I absolutely loved her dedication to her cello and learning little snippets of how to care for a cello and such (a whole separate carriage was needed just to carry it). She takes no arguments from anyone and this is new to Gowan as everyone has always done what he says without question. He leads a very ordered life and reveals his true heart and feelings to almost noone. The heartbreak that follows his terrible words to Edie is raw and emotional. I also really enjoyed a secondary storyline involving Edie's father and stepmother. Edie has a close relationship with her stepmother and that was a pleasant experience to read! This was one of my favorite stories so far by the esteemed Eloisa James. Heartbreak, laughter, joy and determination make a sigh worthy romance that is sure to please many romance fans! 4 1/2 starseARC provided by Avon Books via edelweiss
Lady Vivian Defies a Duke - Samantha Grace This was such a fun, charming, easy read! Vivian and Luke were just so perfectly suited for each other and I loved seeing them fall for each other. Luke had initially decided to help Vivian find another husband but he quickly realizes how perfect she is for him and finds it hard to believe his father, whom he had a strained relationship, could have known him so well to pick Vivian for him. He has left his Duke duties for his brother and has been determined to go off on an adventure but Vivian makes him rethink his true purpose, She is lovely, intelligent, full of high spirits and boldness and he can not help but be drawn to her. Vivian, for her part, falls for Luke quickly as he does not berate her (much) for her behavior and knows she needs to convince Luke she wants no one else except him. Throw in a love struck cousin and a revenge minded class mate and you get a bit of drama and action. The addition of Luke's family adds a wonderful sense of warmth and humor, they are just the type of family you wish you were a part of! Every Samantha Grace book I read has me laughing, smiling, and sighing with happiness and this one is no exception! Pure enjoyment!eARC provided by Sourcebooks Casablanca via

A Passion for Pleasure (Daring Hearts)

A Passion for Pleasure - Nina Rowan Another refreshing, unique, smart and sexy romance for them talents of Nina Rowan! It is refreshing and unique in the aspect that our widow, Clara Whitmore, is living with her uncle and helping him with his automaton museum. I loved seeing the bits and pieces that went into making these 'new' automatons. When she runs into her piano teacher from her youth, Sebastian Hall, she sees a chance to get her son back from her father. Sebastian is is need of some plans that he believes Clara's uncle has so he agrees to her marriage bargain never realizing how fast his life was going to turn upside down. Her vengeful father is hiding a secret (though I thought it was fairly obvious) and he promises to drag Sebastian's family through the mud...his family which has already had to deal with the scandal of adultery and divorce. Clara refuses to put Sebastian through any more pain in his family but Sebastian finds himself caring very deeply for Clara and is determined to help her...even if it drives a wedge between himself and his father. Watching the love grow and deepen between Sebastian and Clara was such a treat. Sebastian was so easy to love; he kept his pain of his hand being damaged, making it unable for him to perform his music, his passion, very close to himself but Clara sees this pain and helps him heal. She allows Sebastian to see the light again and find a way to express himself through his music again. I loved how quickly he became Clara's champion for her son. Sebastian follows his heart and instincts regardless of what other people think. He is kind, generous, loyal and would do anything to help those he cares about. Now there were times I wanted to shake Clara for her refusal to tell Sebastian her plans regarding her son but I know she did it out of her love for Sebastian, her desire to keep him and his family out of scandals reach. Passion, tenderness, sorrow and the healing power of love are all wrapped together in this heartfelt romance. 4 starsReview copy provided by Grand Central Publishing, Forever.
Lord of Wicked Intentions - Lorraine Heath What a lovely, heartbreaking, satisfying conclusion to Lorraine Heath's Lost Lords of Pembrook series! At long last we get the story of the youngest brother, Lord Rafe Eason and the woman who breaks down the walls around his heart, Miss Evelyn Chambers. Evelyn is saddened by the death of her father but her half brothers promise to look after her takes a very unexpected turn when he sells her off and after one glimpse, Rafe knows he has to have her...and no one tells him no. Yet when the circumstances become clear as to what Eve is to become to Rafe, he sees her shock and dismay and for some reason, gives her time to adjust. He finds himself fascinated by this slip of a woman, this woman who talks back to him and does not back down in fear. Rafe knows his dark and tortuous past will be too much, even for Eve and he realizes he must let her go before she finds out about how much pain he has caused and try to avoid causing pain to Eve. Eve is stubborn though and when his life is threatened he can only hope for Eve to find him so they can find a new life together. . .I have been eagerly anticipating Rafe's story since I read the previous books in this series as I knew that underneath that gruff exterior was a kind, caring soul and I was so happy to see this all unfold. Rafe is tough and comes across rude and unbearing to those around him, which helps immensely in the running of his club, yet Eve with her boldness and gentle heart seeps into the cracks he has built around himself and sinks in in a way that Rafe never thought possible. I loved watching the relationship between Eve and Rafe develop but also that of Rafe and his brothers. They have overcome so much and dealt with so much at a young age, it has been hard for them to find common ground to start anew on, even after many years of being reunited. As Rafe still struggles with how he was seemingly abandoned by his older brothers, Eve is there to charm and help heal. I was drawn to the story straight from the beginning as was sad to read the epilogue as I knew this tale was over. Equal parts joy, love, heartbreak, heat and humor this romance will be a winner for all romance fans alike! 4 1/2 starseARC provided by Avon books via edelweiss

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