Monday, June 20, 2011

Review: Notorious

NotoriousAuthor: Nicola Cornick {site}
Genre: Historical, Romance
Format: Kindle
Published: 19 July 2011
Publisher: Harlequin
Disclosure: Acquired via NetGalley
Series: Yes


When I reached the end of this book, I couldn't help but smile and to say I enjoyed it would be something of an understatement. As a fan of regency romance, I enjoy a well told story that brings the period to life. Cornick certainly succeeds on that stage, this story's quite well told. I will admit to some small degree of discomfort reading this book as it's the fourth book in a series, the first three of which I've not had a chance to read yet. I didn't know when I started it that I was reading out of order, which is generally an issue for me. This series, however, includes a number of stand alone novels revolving around the same family/group. After reading this novel, I'll definitely be seeking out the first three.

Truly, there was very little about Notorious that I didn't like. The characters, James Devlin--or "Dev"--and Susanna Burney are very likable personalities. Dev is dead sexy, as the male lead of a romance should be, and Susanna is enormously sympathetic.  As a couple, they've got sparks and I loved their chemistry from the start. The secondary characters are sweet and terrible, at intervals, and you feel as sorry for some of them as you dislike others. Overall, the people in this book, including Lord Alex and his lovely bride, stars of the first novel in the series, are well devised and unique. Of course, some of them should be, she's been writing about them for four books now.

The plot was well played and quite interesting. I felt the turmoil the characters were feeling, and Susanna's situation is a unique one. I don't think I've come upon anything quite like it. There are moments when I felt an immense sympathy for her, and others when I adored her fire. The one thing I will say that I didn't much care for was the stuff about the children, but even that was sparse enough that it didn't detract from the plot much at all. It was just sprinkled in there, without getting in the way, though children in a romance novel aren't my ideal reading and do nothing to feed my enjoyment. Cornic does it well, however, leading to a situation that is sympathetic without being distracting.

Rating: 4.5/5

Synopsis: {via amazon}
When the ton's most notorious heartbreaker…

Dangerously seductive and sinfully beautiful, Susanna Burney is society's most sought after matchbreaker. Paid by wealthy parents to part unsuitable couples, she's never yet failed to accomplish her mission of diverting a groom-to-be. Until her final assignment brings her face-to-face with the man who'd once taught her an intimate lesson in heartache….

Meets London's most disreputable rake…

James Devlin has everything he's always wanted: a title, a rich fiancĂ©e and a place in society. But the woman who's just met his eyes across a crowded ballroom threatens it all. Not because she'd once claimed his heart, or that every sinuous swirl of her ball gown takes his breath away. But because the secrets she carries could cost him everything. To put the past to rest once and for all, Dev just might have to play Susanna at her own wicked game….

Let the seduction begin!
**Review copy acquired free from Harlequin at NetGalley. The review copy was Kindle format and, as an eARC, is subject to change before publication.**


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