LONDON'S PERFECT SCOUNDREL (Lessons in Love #2) by Suzanne Enoch
Mass Market Paperback, 372 pagesPublished April 29th 2003 by Avon Books
Genre: historical romance
Rating : 5 stars plus
What a GLORIOUS reading!!! I could reduce my review to two simple words: MUST READ. Together with Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas and Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase, London’s Perfect Scoundrel has a stardom quality and holds a place of honor among the HRN classics. LOVED IT, LOVED IT, LOVED IT!!! Well executed and DELICIOUSLY WICKED…
Opposites attract and in this book they do with an extreme magnitude…Devilish Michael Marquis of St. Aubyn aka ‘Saint’ is a self-centered, ill-famed, unrepentant scoundrel with one goal in mind, to enjoy life at the expenses of other people’s feelings. Evelyn Ruddick is a pure, caring, kind-hearted and headstrong young lady with a mission: make a difference in other people’s lives with her charitable spirit and selfless generosity. She takes an interest as a funder and volunteer in The Heart of Hope Orphanage, where Saint happens to be Chairman of the Board of Directors. They engage in a battle of will over the improvements desperately needed by the orphanage but their initial antagonism will immediately turn into a wicked and irresistible game of seduction. In a breath-taking mix of physical attraction and mutual fondness, their relationship will evolve relentlessly and ultimately into love.
LPS reminded me of all the reasons why I love this genre. It brims with all the features that make HRN so appealing: the deliciously wicked, heartwarming, “weak-in-the-knees” kind of romance, the perfectly paced and enthralling storyline, pristine prose, captivating characters (Evelyn and ‘Saint’ are among the most charming and well assorted h/h couples), emotional depth, sizzling sensuality. The love scenes aren’t that many (and those few are extremely steamy and yet tasteful), but the chemistry between Evie and Saint is so intense, so palpable that every dialogue, every stolen kiss, every secretive touch and look exchanged between them will make your pulse throb…they pour passion and desire from start to finish!
I like reformed rakes, I think they make great HRN material and in this book the theme has been mastered with such a craft that sets it leagues and leagues above an ocean of sameness and shallow imitations. H/h characterization works beautifully: Evie and Saint are believable characters, their actions are always consistent with their personalities, the change from ‘scoundrel to gentleman’ and from ‘plain, unassuming young lady’ to ‘self-assertive and passionate woman’ is gradual and so well-portrayed, not to mention the chemistry and romantic/sensual tension between them…steamy!
LPS really spoiled me for other “reformed rake” HRN! As hard as it would be to top perfection though, Suzanne Enoch could have upped a farther notch above if she had wrapped it up with a brief epilogue showing how this match made in heaven evolves.
To be placed on a Deliciously-Wicked, All-Time-Favorite shelf. Highly recommended!