Good Earl Gone Bad
Book 2, The Lords of Anarchy - A Lords of Anarchy Novel
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Marriage? To a gambler? You must be joking! Lady Ophelia Dauntry has never been one to back down from a challenge. And when her spendthrift father does the unthinkable and loses her hand in marriage at the gaming tables, she is faced with the challenge of her life. Not only in the man she'll be forced to marry-the Earl of Mainwaring--a gamester, he's also a member of the Lords of Anarchy-the driving club she holds responsible for her dear friend Lucinda's confinement in an asylum, though they have never claimed responsibility. Marriage to Mainwaring won't be easy, but perhaps it will give her the entrée behind the scenes of the LOA she needs to find out which of them had Lucinda put away.
All Jasper Fawley, the Earl of Mainwaring, wanted was a night of cards, but by the end of the evening he walks away not only with a great deal of money, but a lady's hand in marriage. It's not as if he doesn't already have a great deal on his plate, what with paying for his sisters' seasons and searching for James Craven's killer amongst the Lords of Anarchy. But despite his misgivings, he finds his new wife more than beddable and to his surprise and dismay she seems to have quite an interest in the LOA. Could she be one of those women who throw themselves at members willy-nilly, or is there some other reason for her interest in the club? And will their dealings with the club become far more dangerous than either of them could have anticipated?
From Publishers Weekly
© Publishers Weekly
This is a hard review for me to write. I just don't know how I really feel about the book. It was a ok book. It kept my attention but it was more like a roller coaster of reading. It would be really good then plummete again but the good parts kept me reading and hopeful it would stay that way. Unfortunately it did not. The characters added most of the enjoyment to the book. The ladie dialogue and antics were the most fun
the characters and events grow on you and become richer in each page
The first I have read by this author, the story takes a slower pace, and builds characters carefully. They truly are the driving forces behind the story, and the twists with a touch of murderous intent and danger work to build the tension through to the conclusion. A simple ‘driving club’ the Lords of Anarchy are titled men who enjoy a bit of carriage racing, and other manly pursuits. Until Hermione Upperton is admitted into their ranks. A bold and fearless horsewoman of her own right, her vaunted pair is the perfect competition for the men. Until she loses her own property to pay off her rather feckless father’s gambling debt. But, as she is determined to get her own property back, her father goes one step further, and wagers her hand in marriage! Now, understandably women had few rights, but this was over the top. Great premise though.
And then, the man who won Hermione’s horses turns up murdered, and she is the primary suspect. Fortunately, her hand was won by Jasper, and while an inveterate gambler, he does have some sense of morality, and he knows that Hermione is better off away from her father, and with someone who can protect her from the dangers, and the charge of murder.
Hermione was a wonderful character: not too over the top in terms of her determination to win woman’s rights, although she did rail at the unfairness of the situation, and she’s not particularly thrilled with Jasper as a prospective husband. But, personas are often based in gossip and fueled by deliberate actions to cause more gossip and allow freedom of choice, and Jasper has used those tactics to great advantage personally, even as his reputation among the ton is dubious. He’s got a strong sense of loyalty, protectiveness and he’s actually rather intrigued by her. Like many of the ‘forced proximity’ trope stories, these two do not have an instant bond, but the ulterior motives are not stopgaps to a true friendship, which soon deepens into honest regard, and then the attractions come to the forefront.
With several twists and turns, a clever series of events lead them through the miasma of murder, villains, suspects and foes hidden and overt, and keeps readers following along. While not a race to the finish sort of story, the characters and events grow on you and become richer in each page. A great instalment in the series and one that will have me considering this author’s work in the future.
I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
- Category: Historical
- Published: Oct 06, 2015
- Publisher: St. Martin's Press
- Seller: Macmillan
- Print Length: 304 Pages
- Language: English
- Series: Book 2, The Lords of Anarchy