The Heart of a Hellion by Jess Michaels
Tracy’s rating: 4 of 5 stars
Series: The Duke’s Bastards, #2
Release Date: July 14, 2020
Selina Oliver is one of the former Duke of Roseford’s bastard children, raised by her mother and stepfather, Selina’s life was not happy and the only good thing her father ever did for her was leave her an inheritance – that she used to start her own life, which she lives on her own terms. Now her half-brother Robert, the new Duke has made it clear that he wants Selina to be part of his life. Selina resists, Robert and his wife Katherine are wonderful, but Selina has secrets that could hurt them and make them hate her if they ever found out the truth. She enjoys getting to know them and being part of a family, but still keeps her distance. She is invited by Katherine to join them for a country house party and is going to refuse, until she learns that the Countess of Winford will be attending. The Countess has something that Selina wants and she can’t pass up the opportunity to get it! She accepts and hopes that her family never figures out that Selina is the infamous thief known as “the Faceless Fox”.
Derrick Huntington and his partner Edward Barber are private investigators for hire and currently are looking for the Faceless Fox. They get a tip that the Fox will be attending Roseford’s party and go to see their good friend Nicholas Gillingham in hopes that he can secure an invite for them – he is Roseford’s half-brother after all. Nicholas comes through for them and they arrive at the party. Derrick is immediately drawn to Selina. They take each other’s measure and even though Derrick is sure Selina is hiding something, he quickly falls for her and she for him. They begin a passionate affair, but soon Selina’s secrets are exposed and HEA becomes impossible – or does it?
This was a very well written, fast-paced story with quite a few extremely steamy love scenes (that is not a complaint!) Selina and Derrick are wonderful characters and I really wanted them to find their HEA – but it doesn’t look possible and while I wasn’t shocked by the resolution, I was still impressed – it was a very well executed twist that saves the day. The book has a bit of intrigue, betrayal, remorse, heartbreak and as previously mentioned, some smoking hot love scenes as well as an easy to hate villain, cameos with former characters from the 1797 Club and a HEA that almost didn’t happen! This is the second book in the series and has loose ties to the 1797 Club series, but it can easily be read as a stand-alone title. I enjoyed the book and would happily recommend it!
I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC that was provided to me by NetGalley and the publister.