Barbara’s rating: 3.75 of 5 Stars (Rounded Up)
Series: Ruined Rakes 32
Publication Date: 10/19/21
Period: Regency/Georgian (1821) London
Number of Pages: 366
Mitchell Harrison, now the seventh Earl of Richfield, and Lady Amelia Covington have a history. They broke each other’s hearts, neither has ever really recovered, and each blamed the other. So, imagine his surprise when he finds her working in his home as a maid. Just what is she up to?
Amelia’s parents are true cold-hearted, despicable people who have run up huge debts and have fled to stay out of debtor’s prison. Lovely caring parents that they are, they sent an unsuspecting Amelia from London to the Covington country estate to be greeted by creditors who are there to strip their home of all of its contents. Then, there was also one very scary, threatening man who raised all of Amelia’s instincts. She couldn’t stay in an empty house, she had absolutely no money, no food, no clothes, and no place to go. Lucky for Amelia, her former lady’s maid managed to get Amelia a job as a maid at the neighboring estate – which just happened to belong to Mitchell. Amelia assumed they wouldn’t cross paths because he spent his time in London. She was certainly wrong about that. What a lucky thing that was.
Mitchell served during the wars and then he became part of the Sub-Rosa Order that undertook distasteful, yet necessary, matters the crown could not. The organization is a shadow organization and the matters it handles are not sanctioned by the crown – so – if the members are caught, they are on their own. Mitchell’s role is that of an assassin and he has relieved England of a number of souls who were the vilest and most reprehensible of its citizens. Since Mitchell didn’t really care if he lived or died, he executed his assignments without much thought. However, in his heart, he always regretted those actions and has finally decided to quit the organization.
As Mitchell comes to realize the extent of Amelia’s troubles and the danger her parents have left her to face, he knows he has to do something. For one, he has to find and deal with the man who threatened her, and then he can worry about saving her reputation within the ton because she definitely doesn’t have a future as a maid.
I certainly enjoyed this book, but not as much as I did the first book in the series, It Was Only a Kiss. I enjoyed the banter between Mitchell and Amelia – Amelia had a wicked sense of humor. Actually, I loved Amelia because she was an intrepid soul who just kept on keepin’ on no matter what was thrown at her. I had a much harder time warming up to Mitchell and I never came to really love him because I could not imagine loving anyone who could deliberately murder someone. Also, Mitchell’s constant angst and internal navel-gazing just made me insane. Somehow, the book managed to be overly busy and yet draggy in spots. By overly busy, I mean there were just too many villains doing too many separate things. I also have to say, I firmly believe that villains should get their punishment. Yet, Amelia’s despicable parents got a reward rather than any punishment.
This is the author’s second book and I hope you’ll give the book and the author a try.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.