by Sarah MacLean
Series: Rules of Scoundrels #2
Genres: Historical Romance
Lady Philippa Marbury is odd. The bespectacled, brilliant fourth daughter of the Marquess of Needham and Dolby cares more for books than balls, flora than fashion and science than the season. Nearly engaged to Lord Castleton, Pippa wants to explore the scandalous parts of London she's never seen before marriage. And she knows just who to ask: the tall, charming, quick-witted bookkeeper of The Fallen Angel, London's most notorious and coveted gaming hell, known only as Cross. Like any good scientist, Pippa's done her research and Cross's reputation makes him perfect for her scheme. She wants science without emotion—the experience of ruination without the repercussions of ruination. And who better to provide her with the experience than this legendary man? But when this odd, unexpected female propositions Cross, it's more than tempting . . . and it will take everything he has to resist following his instincts—and giving the lady precisely what she wants
I must warn you that I am a huge fan of Sarah MacLean’s works and gushing may begin at any moment. One Good Earl Deserves a Lover the second book in the Rules of Scoundrels series is positively my favorite book thus far from the author. From her wonderfully flawed and fleshed out characters to the fast-paced storyline I could barely come up for air! I laughed, I cried and experienced fits. When I closed the last page I wept, not because it was sad but because it ended.
Lady Philippa Marbury or “Pippa” is the fourth daughter of the Marquess of Needam and Dolby. She is an odd duck with spectacles and a love of science. She and her sister are newly engaged and will soon wed in a double wedding. All are concerned for Pippa since they feel that the Earl and she won’t suit but she made a promise. Pippa loves scientific experimentation and goes about preparing for her wedding by taking a course of action to learn about the personal side of marriage. She decides to hire a tutor and selects none other than Fallen Angel partner the devastatingly handsome, loner; Mr. Cross. She knows he is brilliant and a man of science. She also believes him to be a notorious rake and the perfect teacher to answer her questions. When she goes to the gambling hall and tells Cross she wants to experience ruination the man all but has a heart-attack and the tale that unfolds was hilarious, steamy and had me completely enthralled.
MacLean has a knack for creating characters that are well fleshed out, unique and flawed. Pippa is by far my favorite MacLean character to date. She is a Regency Geek, a nerd, a lover of books, a scientist and her straightforward thinking made her lovable. The stories of her childhood and her journal entries had me giggling so hard I had tears. She speaks from innocents and curiosity and I found this brilliant girl to be brutally honest and refreshing. I am a pushover when it comes to flawed rakes that are truly just damaged. Cross is all of these things; he is loyal, protective and sweet. I completely fell for him even if I wanted to throttle him at times! We see some of the characters from the first tale, which I adored and we got a little more face time with Temple the third proprietor of the Fallen Angel. The villain in this novel was fantastic and I loved to hate him with a vengeance. Sally one of the prostitutes was interesting and I found her amusing.
The Rules of Scoundrels feature titled men, who by their own hand or fate were cast from society. Together they regained their wealth with the Fallen Angel Gaming Hell. They are all flawed but remarkable men, and of course completely swoon-worthy. What truly make MacLean’s tales so memorable are the wonderful women she pairs them with. I adore women who are feisty, misfits and break the mold. The back history for Cross was wonderful and the dilemma he found himself in was downright gripping. The romance was oh so hot, and there is a scene that melted me..where Cross never even touches her. *faints* I caught the book high I chase within these pages and wept when it ended. I wanted to stay with Cross and Pippa a little longer. *sigh* Now I have to pine away for the next book in this series; No Good Duke Goes Unpunished.
Of course, I totally recommend One Good Earl Deserves a Lover and the entire Rules of Scoundrels series to fans of fantastic characters and historical romance. No Good Duke Goes Unpunished will be released August 27, 2013. This MacLean fan cannot wait!
Coffee Chat with Sarah
Today I am so excited *dances and pump fists in the air and yells, Sarah is here, like a crazed fangirl* to be interviewing Sarah MacLean author of my favorite historical romances. I have a review of her latest novel One Good Earl Deserves A Lover to share with you and Sarah is giving you a chance to win a copy of the first book in the series A Rogue By Any Other Name! Enjoy and then be sure and check out the other blogs featured in today’s hop. They have some awesome books, authors, and giveaways to share with you!
Welcome, Sarah I made some mocha coffee and snickerdoodle cookies enjoy. I have to tell you that I absolutely love all of your novels from the feisty heroines to the flawed, smexy heroes they bewitch.
Thanks so much for having me, Kim. I’m so flattered that you enjoy my books.
I love that your male characters are flawed, but also sweet. Where do you get the inspiration for your swoon-worthy men?
My husband would like me to tell you that I get my inspiration directly from him. And he’s not entirely wrong. He’s definitely a part of it. But I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that I also draw inspiration from historical figures, good friends and a handsome actor here and there (I’m looking at you, Michael Fassbender). Mostly, though, I craft my heroes the way I craft my heroines – for each other.
I love your blog slogan, “I write books. There’s smooching in them.” Your romantic scenes are among some of my favorites. How difficult is it for you to write those scenes?
I’m so happy they ring true and read well to you, Kim. I’ll be honest, those scenes are always the hardest for me. Aside from the fact that writing the naughty bits always slows the story down (Where I might go 10 days in 10 pages in other parts of the book, I might only go an hour in 10 pages there), I try to make sure that those sections are extremely important to the book. Sex is important in real life—it complicated, it intensifies, it makes a relationship bigger and more powerful. And if it doesn’t do all those things in a romance novel, it shouldn’t be in the book.
This month on the blog it is all about “Fiery Hot Reads for Icy Cold Nights” and your novels are sure to keep us warm. What made you choose historical romances as your genre?
Like so many others, I came to romance during the golden age of it — Judith McNaught, Julie Garwood, Johanna Lindsey & Jude Deveraux were at the height of their historical domination. Those are the women who made me love romance, and so when I finally decided to write a book, it was no surprise that I wrote a historical romance.
What is your idea of a perfectly romantic evening?
I’m easy. I don’t need flowers or chocolate or fancy dinners. I need a long conversation, filled with big laughs. If there’s a good bottle of wine involved, all the better.
Nine Rules to Break When Romancing A Rake is one of my all-time favorites. If it was picked up for the big screen who would you cast as Callie and Gabriel *swoons*?
Callie & Ralston are two of my favorites, too, Kim. I’m absolutely awful at this question, always, however. I will say that Ralston is modeled on David Gandy, who I didn’t know was David Gandy when I found him in an issue of Vanity Fair magazine while I was writing in 2008. As for Callie, she’s a tough one, as full-figured ladies aren’t usually so famous. That said, I always imagined her a little Kate Winslet-y.
If Doctor Who arrived at your door and offered to transport you back to the time period in your novels, would you want to live there? Why or why not?
Things that did not exist in London in the 1830s: Penicillin, tampons, widespread flushable toilets, daily hot showers, deodorant that’s strong enough for a man but made for a woman, drinkable water . . . you see where I’m going with this? So . . . unless the Dr. is staying with me and he has a medical degree and is an expert in infectious diseases (which I’m pretty sure he doesn’t), thank you very much, but no.
Share an interesting fact about the time period for your novels that you discovered while researching.
The modern casino was “invented” in the 1820s by a man named William Crockford, The history on the man himself is hazy, and he’s more myth than fact these days, but its generally accepted that he grew up the son of a fishmonger in Temple Bar and pulled himself up by his bootstraps, first running dice games in the slums of London, then his own small gaming hell, and finally trading up for an enormous casino at 50 St. James’s, just across the street from White’s. During all this, he conceived of the modern idea of “the house” and it always winning. Without him, we’d have a very different kind of casino.
1.Coffee or tea? Coffee in the morning, tea in the afternoon.
2. Chocolate or vanilla? Vanilla.
3. Mountains or beach? Beach.
4. If you could have a superpower, what would you choose and why? A lasso of truth would come in handy now and then.
5. Books in your TBR pile? Jasper Fforde’s The Eyre Affair, John Lanchester’s Capital, and I’m quite desperate for Lorraine Heath’s next—Lord of Wicked Intentions.
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