‘What a Reckless Rogue Needs’ by Vicky Dreiling

vd warrnSTORY: Will The Rogue’s Perfect Plan . . . 

Colin Brockhurst, Earl of Ravenshire, has no desire to wed, this season or any other. So when his father demands he give up his wild ways and take a wife, Colin refuses. But his father raises the stakes and threatens to sell the ancestral home if Colin doesn’t comply. Now Colin has no choice but to find a wife. Unfortunately, the only woman he wants is the one whose heart he broke years ago.

Lead To The Perfect Seduction?

Regardless of the ton‘s whispers, Lady Angeline Brenham won’t settle for anything less than true love. After rejecting more than her share of suitable suitors, spinsterhood looms before her-until the devilishly handsome Colin reappears in her life with a proposition. Angeline vows to keep her feet on the ground and her heart in check. That is, until one searing kiss melts her resolve and reignites a burning desire for more . . .

REVIEW: Vicky Dreiling writes fun and passionate stories with well-developed, likeable and believable characters that I’ve come to love and admire as if they’re my own family. I have been an avid fan of hers from the first book she ever wrote, and as I was reading this newest, I can safely say, it looks like I’ll be a fan for life.

This is a second book in her Sinful Scoundrels series and in it we finally get to know who the real Colin Brochurst is.

He’s very happy with his single status, his rakish ways and as long as his father leaves him be, life in general is very good for him.

His father is however of the opposing opinion. He isn’t happy to see his son waste his life in debauchery so he summons him home from Town, issuing an ultimatum: either he commits to marriage and dedicates himself to renovating Sommerall, the estate of his mother’s final rest and the one he should inherit, or it will be sold under him. Oh, and he has only three weeks to make up his mind, and six weeks to find a bride and start on the renovations. Talk about ‘shot-gun’ wedding!

Lady Angeline’s parents have decided to attend a house party of their long time friends, Colin’s father and stepmother. She’s surviving a reputation of a ‘jilter’ and before the Season begins, everyone thinks she ought to ease herself back into society after a period of absence and travel. Her relationship with her parents, her sister and even our hero is strained and complex yet this young woman stands behind her principles and holds her head high, and from time to time as opportunity arises she displays her singular gift of decorating. And soon enough our duo is drawn into ‘fixing’ not just the state of Sommerall, but their single status’ as well.

I loved the pace Ms. Dreiling gave this romance as their casual acquaintance slowly turned into a friendship, and then solidly built into love. 

Vicky Dreiling is a gifted storyteller who never fails to create complex, sensual, fast moving stories with witty and intelligent dialogue which stays with her readers long after they’re done with the book. 

*Melanie for b2b.

*Complementary copy provided by NetGalley.

Behind The Scenes of ‘What a Wicked Earl Wants’ by Vicky Dreiling

WAWEW VDWhen Melanie contacted me to blog, she mentioned that WHAT A WICKED EARL WANTS differs from many Regency historical romances in that the story features two mature adults. To be honest, I never thought about it that way. However, I realized that Melanie was right. Since I love to discuss the behind the scenes aspects of my books, I’m thrilled to blog about the book.

The first thing I must confess is that I did not plan Andrew Carrington, the Earl of Bellingham. He first showed up as a minor character in HOW TO RAVISH A RAKE. When he stepped on the metaphorical stage, my arms actually tingled. Bellingham had so much presence that I knew immediately that he would star in my next book. Interestingly, my editor had the same reaction. Some characters just leap to life immediately, and he certainly did.

But, there is another interesting tidbit that goes all the way back to 1996, when I HTRAR VDwrote a Regency historical romance that actually won a lot of contests and finaled in the Golden Heart. Alas, that book, THE DUKE BY DEFAULT, didn’t sell (I was heartbroken). But I salvaged something from that buried treasure: a name. Yes, I decided to metaphorically recycle the name ‘Bellingham.’

Something else you might find interesting is that I am a pantser. That means I do very little plotting. It’s a bit scary to write that way, but it also energizes you, because you’re learning about the characters and the story as you write. I knew Bellingham was a total rake, and I also knew a little bit about his background. He had an early tragedy in his life, one that he buried deep inside. Bellingham is a wounded hero who, to use a modern term, compensates for what he refuses to acknowledge and overcome—that he’s never properly mourned. I knew that an alpha male with these issues would need a special heroine who would stand up to him. That meant the heroine not only had to be mature (age 28), but she also needed wisdom gained from her own experiences with grief.

ASTS VDSo I created Laura Davenport, a widow and vicar’s daughter with a rebellious teenage son. Why a widow and teenage son? Well, all of these characteristics add built-in conflict between Bell and Laura. His values as a rake and ruthless politician are miles apart from Laura’s values. Yet, in so many ways, she is the perfect woman for him, because she had to overcome her own grief after her husband’s death.

Her son, however, is a source of worry and conflict for Laura. She’s in the sprawling metropolis of London for the first time, and her son is associating with wild young men. I thought that many readers would identify with a mother who was having difficulties with her son.

Justin’s character is something of a catalyst in the book in that his rebellious actions actually lead Bellingham to Laura’s townhouse for the first time. I won’t spoil what happens for readers, but I will say that I had an enormous amount of fun writing that scene and many others in the book.

Bellingham has a keen sense about others, but like many of us, not necessarily about himself.  That makes sense, given his issues. He’s an über alpha male who takes over any situation, because he’s so confident of how to resolve problems—for everyone else.  Bell was a fascinating character to write, but he and his friends were also a great source of hilarity. The second book in The Sinful Scoundrels series features Bellingham’s friend, Colin Brockhurst, Earl of Ravenshire and Lady Angeline Brenham.  Their story is loads of fun and is set to publish in March 2014.  Cheers!

Vicky DreilingAUTHOR BIO: Triple Rita®-finalist Vick Dreiling is a confirmed historical romance junkie and Anglophile. Frequent business trips to the UK allowed her to indulge her passion for all things Regency England. Bath, Stonehenge, and Spencer House are among her favorite places. She is, however, truly sorry for accidentally setting off a security alarm in Windsor Castle. That unfortunate incident led her British colleagues to nickname her “Trouble”.  A native Texan, she holds degrees in English literature and marketing.

You can find Vicky on: Website / Twitter / Facebook / Pinterest / Goodreads

‘What a Wicked Earl Wants’ by Vicky Dreiling

WAWEW VDSTORY: WILL A RAKE’S WICKED WAYS

Andrew Carrington, Earl of Bellingham, believes in being a gentleman, whether it’s fishing a soggy stranger out of the Thames or assisting a fetching lady into his bed. If the stranger becomes a friend and the lady a mistress, all the better. He certainly welcomes the opportunity to help Laura Davenport, a dazzling young widow with a rebellious stepson. Her gratitude, he hopes, will take an amorous form. But from the moment he sets foot in her drawing room, he gets far more than he bargained for …

LEAD THE LADY ASTRAY?

It was a moment of desperation. On the brink of losing her stepson, Laura turned to the notorious Lord Bellingham for help. Suddenly she, a vicar’s daughter, is in the precarious position of resisting his tantalizing advances. How Bell earned his wicked reputation is clear; the surprise is how much more there is to him than the gossip sheets could possibly reveal. Now every moment with this dangerously desirable man puts Laura’s good name at risk-and promises pleasure unlike any she has ever known …

REVIEW: Awhile back Ms. Dreiling published her little novella ‘A Season for Sin’ which is a short introduction into the upcoming series Sinful Scoundrels, and this is where we meet our heroine and her step son as well as get a glimpse into a life of our hero’s aristocratic day-to-day life. I highly recommend you read it first as it is a sort of prequel to ‘What a Wicked Earl Wants’ and I loved it.

‘A Season for Sin’ only hinted of the love story that was to come and I must say I was pleasantly surprised with this grown-up tale of courting and romance.

From reading this author’s earlier work, I knew she can do ‘witty and fun’ characters, yet I wasn’t so sure if she could ‘bring it on’ when it came to a more serious plot and more mature romance. Well, shame on me for doubting her!

I was blown away by the degree of maturity she did bring on! Frankly, I was ready for someone to take a chance on an older, mature couple to tackle some real life problems and do some serious, grown up courting.

Every character in this story is given much care and the plot is interesting and entertaining enough to keep you glued until the end.

Even though this is an adult romance, Ms. Dreiling still manages to infuse the tale with quick, witty dialogue and wonderful prose.

I loved the pairing of Andrew, a first-rate rake, with an aversion to marriage and intimacy issues, with a widow Laura who loved her husband and now is left with a teenage stepson who she loves with all her heart, yet is faced with his restless spirit which can bring an unwanted man to their doorstep.

What made this story even more beautiful was the solid, perfect pace of the story that had the two developing a friendship that bloomed into an affection of the heart.

This is a new series, and if the rest of them are filled with strong and complex characters, witty dialogue and her signature prose, I’m there with bells on!

*Book provided by publisher through NetGalley.

‘How to Ravish A Rake’ by Vicky Dreiling

STORY: SCANDALOUS DESIRES . . .

Amy Hardwick has one last Season to shake off her wallflower image and make a love match. If she can’t, she’ll set aside her dreams of romance and return home to a suitor who can provide security—if little else. What she doesn’t count on is the inappropriate—and irresistible—attention lavished on her in a darkened library by rake extraordinaire Will “The Devil” Darcett . . .

DEVILISH DELIGHT

When Will is caught in a tryst with the ton’s shyest miss, he knows he must offer for her hand. Yet Amy is not the shrinking violet she seems to be. Passion lies beneath her prim exterior and Will is eager to release it. But winning Amy isn’t simply a matter of seduction; first, Will must convince her that he’s mended his wicked ways . . .

REVIEW: This is the third story in the How to series from Vicky Dreiling and I was looking forward to Amy’s story since we were first introduced to her character. I had such high hopes for her and frankly, after the previous two books, my expectations were very high.

The blurb sets this story very well, so I’m not going to go into it, but rather I’ll tell you why I liked this story.

I liked the way the author took her time to set up the background on both of these characters and then she placed them in some complicated and interesting situations which made both take a very serious look at their past, present and future.

Will was always a ‘rolling-stone’ and to really understand this complex man, the author gives us little bits and pieces from his past through his families stories and especially through his own musings. He admits to his own failings and wonders as to the reasons behind his past liaisons with many women and why he’s never wanted nor desired a true relationship.

Amy was such a contradiction, even to herself. She, like all that knew her, always thought of her as shy and timid, yet once she really got to look deep down into herself, she found out that she had a backbone and all she ever wanted was for people to see her as she really is, a woman with a mind of her own.

In contrast to Ms. Dreiling’s other two books which were filled with lots of humor and wit, this one was just a tad on the serious side and slower paced, but I believe that both of the characters dictated the story take that turn.

Don’t misunderstand, there’s still plenty of humor, especially when we get to hang around Will’s family, just not as much as I am used to from this author.

The author also gives us plenty of secondary characters such as Georgette and Beau and their romance. We get to meet Will’s ‘misguided’ friends as well and can’t but hope that Bell and Fordham will soon find their own happily ever after.

It appears that Andrew Carrington, the Earl of Bellingham’s love story is next and you can get a peek at what’s coming up for him in ‘A Season for Sin’ which is an e-novella and a prelude to ‘What a Wicked Earl Wants‘ a new series ‘The Sinful Scoundrels’ coming our way in Spring 2013. It promises to be yet another of Ms. Dreiling’s unique fun-filled romantic comedies set in the Regency Era. In the meantime, if you haven’t had a chance to read any of her books, please try to find her previous two, ‘How to Marry a Duke’ and ‘How to Seduce a Scoundrel’. Trust me, you’ll love them all.

ARC provided by NetGalley.