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The Irresistible Rogue

Book 4, Playful Brides

This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.


Daphne Swift has not laid eyes on her devilishly charming husband, Captain Rafferty Cavendish, in quite some time. As a matter of fact, she wants the rogue to annul their brief marriage so that she can marry the reliable and estimable Lord Fitzwell. But the breathtakingly handsome Rafe is not interested in letting Daphne go-at least not without paying his scandalous price...

Rafe prefers to face the dangers of spying alone, but this time he needs his innocent, fiery wife to uncover the information he seeks. He has even agreed to release her from their marriage if she submits completely to his plan. However, Daphne's alluring combination of courage and curves makes her a dangerous distraction, and it is not long before Rafe is trading subterfuge for seduction in order to prove that Daphne is meant to be his and his alone...

Valerie Bowman's Playful Brides novels are:

"Smart and sensual...readers will be captivated."-RT Book Reviews
"Sexy, satisfying romance."-KirkusReviews
"Merry, intelligent, and wholly satisfying."-USA Today

From Publishers Weekly

Sep 28, 2015 – Bowman's enjoyable fourth Playful Brides Regency (after The Unlikely Lady) puts a 19th-century spin on Philip Barry's The Philadelphia Story. Lady Daphne Swift's knowledge of Russian made her the perfect person to accompany Capt. Rafe Cavendish on a spy mission from England to Russia. In order to protect her reputation, she needed to marry him first, but their union was never consummated. On the eve of her engagement to another man, Rafe reappears, asking for her help before he will agree to an annulment. While Daphne claims that she never wanted their "marriage," she can't help her attraction to the dashing captain. Daphne is not a typical aristocratic young lady; she refuses to enjoy proper ladylike sedentary pursuits and must decide whether she is willing to break from the secure but stifling life her family has created for her and go after the one man she desires. And Rafe must learn to let go of the past and rise above his father's demeaning criticisms of him if he's going to allow Daphne into his life. Bowman's novel is the complete package, filled with fascinating characters, sparkling romance, and a touch of espionage.

Customer Reviews

Great read!!!

Our heroine, Lady Daphne is about to attend a ball with the impending announce of her engagement to Lord Fitzwell. Daphne has a slight problem to resolve first, the annulment to her husband Captain Rafe Cavendish.

Hero and heroine married to assist Daphne's brother, Donald, to gather information from the French. Rafe and Donald worked for the crown as spies. Unfortunately Donald was killed and now Rafe wants to find out who/why/how he was killed. And he needs Daphne's help. So no annulment till Daphne helps him in his quest for answers.

Daphne has always had a thing for Rafe.Infatuated since she was a little girl she had hopes that something could/would come of their "marriage", but it was clear now as it was when she was a young girl that Rafe only saw her as a sister. Rafe just knew he couldn't dishonor his friend by moving forward on his feeling for Daphne, so it was a marriage in name only. These two had good chemistry.

This was a little slow at the beginning but it did picked up after the first chapter and a half. The romance was sweet and evolved as the story progressed. Really liked both characters, strong, caring and they had depth. Had good historical points, suspense and a few surprises.

Developed and complex characters with dialogue and backstory that completely fits the story

Each page brought a new twist to this story, reading perfectly without having to know the earlier titles, you can jump right into this story and be transported. Daphne has a new suitor, and he’s asked her to marry him. The new beau is dashing, handsome and utterly suitable. Unfortunately, Daphne is already married, and she has to obtain an annulment from her secret husband to move on with her life.

Rafferty (Rafe) Cavendish is in the employ of the Crown, working with Daphne’s brother Donald, which is how he came to marry Daphne. Now, with Donald gone, Rafe wants answers about his death. With Daphne reappearing in his life, he won’t relent and provide the annulment until she helps him ferret out the mystery of Donald’s death.

Their marriage was in name only, even though Daphne has had feelings for him forever, he never would dishonor his best friend’s sister, or jeopardize their relationship. But, things are different now, they are both doing their best to ignore the obvious attraction, and Daphne does prove helpful in his investigation.

Twists and turns that thrilled or dismayed were plentiful, with seriously clever dialogue and solidly built characters. Rafe’s honor and determination to solve the mystery surrounding Donald while keeping Daphne safe is evident, and his playful nature and good humor keep him from being too stuffy. Daphne is wonderful, she doesn’t always hold her tongue, and her confidence really took a hit when her ‘marriage’ turned out to be a business proposition. She’s still stinging in many ways from that perceived rejection, although EVERYONE (including she and Rafe) ultimately see they are perfect for one another.

Developed and complex characters with dialogue and backstory that completely fits the story that is reminiscent of The Philadelphia Story set in Regency England. A fun, engaging and clever story that fits nicely with the earlier titles in the series, and will encourage readers trying this series for the first time to get ALL the books.

I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

Valerie Bowman's Irresistible

Great read!! This is the first Valerie Bowman book I have read.
It is the fourth in The Playful Brides Series. It can be read as a
stand alone with no difficulty.
This story makes historical romance reading a very unique
experience with all the adventurous twists and turns involved.
Description is deftly woven into the story making the reader
feel as if they were present with the characters.
The characters are very well defined. Each adding their own
flavor to the story. The story showed how class was defined
in that era.
The chemistry between the main characters was undeniable.
Their shenanigans added humor to a story filled with deceit,
trickery, mystery, drama, suspense, loyalty, regret and
unpredictable events.
Come join Daphne Swift as her life is in turmoil.
Thank you to the author and Net Gallery for this eBook.
My opinion is my own.

The Irresistible Rogue
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  • $7.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Historical
  • Published: Nov 03, 2015
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Seller: Macmillan
  • Print Length: 352 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Series: Book 4, Playful Brides
  • Requirements: This book can only be viewed on an iOS device with Apple Books on iOS 12 or later, iBooks 1.5 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings