“It serves you right for being such an insufferable tease. You’re lucky I admire your face
so much or I’d claw your eyes out.”
– Horatia Sheridan, my friends.
My writing-bestie, Smithy, is having a FABULOUS year. Last week she made the Amazon Bestseller’s List – so you guys know I am not being biased when I say she’s an amazing author who has crafted a great series of books, both historical (beginning with the first in the series I reviewed earlier in the year, here) and contemporary/gothic (excellence reviewed here), and in the year to come in many more spheres including short stories and Erotica. Intrigued? You should be! Girl is a rising star, and there’s a reason.
This review is of the second book in the League of Rogues which is out TODAY (click here!) – His Wicked Seduction – where my favourite member of the League of Rogues, Lucien, finally takes center stage, and ladies, ladies (and gents!) – you were so waiting for Lucien’s story, you really were. It’s full of forbidden romance, silk bindings, masks (literally and figuratively), snowball fights, the best Matron the Ton has to offer and a series of misadventures and steamy scenes that is sure to light you on fire.
So without further ado, my review of His Wicked Seduction …
Horatia Sheridan has been hopelessly in love with Lucien, her brother’s best friend, ever since he rescued her from the broken remains of her parents’ wrecked carriage. His reputation as London’s most notorious rakehell doesn’t frighten her, for under his veneer of cool authority she has glimpsed a man whose wicked desires inspire her own.
Lucien, Marquess of Rochester, has deliberately nurtured a reputation for debauchery that makes every matchmaking mother of the ton quake with fear. His one secret: he is torn between soul-ripping lust for Horatia, and the loyalty he owes her brother.
That loyalty is put to the test when an old enemy of the League threatens Horatia’s life. With Christmas drawing near, he sweeps her away to his country estate, where he can’t resist granting her one wish—to share his bed and his heart.
But sinister forces are lurking, awaiting the perfect moment to exact their revenge by destroying not only whatever happiness Lucien might find in Horatia’s arms, but the lives of those they love.
Warning: This book contains an intelligent lady who is determined to seduce her brother’s friend, a brooding rake whose toy of choice in bed is a little bit of bondage with a piece of red silk, a loyal band of merry rogues and a Christmas love so scorching you’ll need fresh snow to extinguish it.
Let’s start off with this: Lucien is going to make your insides melt. See, he’s a bit of the bad boy and he’s a bit of the naughty boy and he’s so damned corruptible by one head-strong, determined woman, that you will just fall to pieces – particularly when he’s whispering words of surrender in your ear. No seriously, so hot. He’s a red headed devil that has been both the desire and bane of our tough but fair heroine, Horatia’s existence. See, many years ago, he saved Horatia from the carriage accident that took her parents from her, and she developed a school girl crush on him that lasted years, evolving into a woman’s passion as she grew and began to match wits with the disgruntled Marquess, who also happens to be the bestie of her brother.
Yes, the drama. I love the drama.
So, here we have two potential lovers – they want each other, something that is made evident from the first few lines of the book (thank Goddess, I hate it when there’s the hemming and hawing of “Oh no, I have no desire for this obviously very desirable person!), but society, stringent rules and familial/friend bonds keep them from actually pursuing one another in an above-board way.
Instead, they have to go under ground – and props to Horatia, the women knows her own mind and you have to respect the lengths to which she will go in order to see her will done.
On top of all the sexual tension, there is a more sinister plot afoot! Hugo Waverly, the shadowy villain at the heart of all the League’s troubles, is at it again – this time targeting the Sheridans, something which Lucien cannot tolerate. Between the League, and the newly formed Society of Rebellious Ladies, the Sheridans accompany Lucien to his family estate for the holidays where his domineering (and so very entertaining mother) and assorted siblings are ready for snow ball fights, covert matchmaking and general hilariousness.
Let us just say, this sojourn in the country ends off with a bang!
And no, don’t be crude, I meant an actual bang.
Anyways, here are my assorted musings for the novel – things I LOVED and think you’ll love too:
– Lucien has a thing for binding women with silk scarves and bringing them to pleasure. And the way it’s written … here’s a taste:
“Do you trust me?” His eyes were dark and his voice rough, but in that moment she
was spellbound. “I need your complete trust. I will bring you only pleasure, no pain.” His
face held passion but beneath that was nothing but a desperate need for her to trust him.
And she did.
Still, Horatia’s quick breaths would not ease. She struggled to stay focused on his face
and not the fact that she was bound to a bed. Never before had she felt so helpless, so
exposed. It was a risk like no other, to trust him now, like this.
– Asides from the main romance of Horatia and Lucien there two noteworthy characters who make me roll around laughing throuhgout the whole book: Audrey, Horatia’s younger sister and likely heroine for a future League novel; and Lady Rochester, who only wants the best for her children – even if they don’t always appreciate her … er … enthusiasm. Seriously – both these characters are beyond wonderful – full of life and crazy and just so much fun to read. For example, Lucien says of Lady Rochester: “He’d often wondered if perhaps there was some secret pamphlet that a mother received upon the birth of her first child that bore instructions on how to instill fear in one’s child with only a look. If there was, his mother had been a quick study. Perhaps she had written the latest edition.” Can you not just picture that?
– The love story is a slow, simmering one which I think works very well given the backdrop of Lucien’s friendship with Cedric, Horatia’s overprotective brother among other things.
All in all, this book is a great read – it’s hot, it’s funny and it’s so entertaining. It’s the perfect Christmas gift, being out in time for the Holidays and I wholley recommend everyone go out and grab a copy. If you need more convincing – this Youtube Review by TheMIZMocha: