The Artist and the Rake by Callie Hutton

The Artist and the Rake (The Merry Misfits of Bath #4)Barbara’s rating: 4 of 5 stars

Series: The Merry Misfits of Bath #4
Publication Date: 4/14/20
Number of Pages: 185

This was a really exciting addition to the series – it was fast-paced, well-written, and so very romantic. I will admit that parts of it were a bit darker than I normally care for, but it was still a delightful read and a change of pace for me. We also had lovely visits with the H/h from the first three books.

Four years ago, Lizbeth Davenport lost her entire family within just a few weeks of each other. Now, alone and without employment, she accepts a fateful offer that will lead to the demise of all her hopes and dreams. In the middle of the night, she’s kidnapped – taken from her bed and sold to a London brothel.

Marcus Mallory is a member of parliament who has spent years working on getting a bill passed that would crack down on the kidnapping of women and children for nefarious purposes. The bill gets passed in the House of Lords, but is always defeated in the Commons. He’s frustrated, but still working to get the votes he needs. When his friend Nick (Nicholas Smith from Lady Pamela and the Gambler) arrives and asks for his assistance in rescuing a friend who was kidnapped and sold to a brothel, Marcus leaps at the chance to help.

After her rescue, Lizbeth is filled with anger and vows revenge on those who kidnapped her. She has every intention of doing it alone, but Marcus insists on helping her. As they spend time together, they grow closer, but still … Can a man who has declared to all who’ll listen that he’ll not marry and a woman who is terrified of a man’s touch actually find their HEA?

I absolutely loved Marcus, he wasn’t judgmental and seemed to have all of the patience in the world with Lizbeth. When there are villains everywhere – more kidnappings – and police who seem to do nothing, the reader begins to wonder if/when/how Lizbeth will have her revenge.

I thoroughly enjoyed this read and I hope you will as well. The only thing I wasn’t happy about was that one of the main villains went basically unpunished. Given the damage this person did, how many lives were ruined over a long period of time, I would have really preferred a severe punishment. If the police couldn’t manage it – the person could have fallen off a cliff, or down a quarry, or over the side of a boat, or out of a moving coach, or run in front of a bullet – whatever – just something more than what happened.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Avid reader/reviewer of historical romance and historical mysteries.

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