‘If You Give a Rake a Ruby’ by Shana Galen

iygarar sgSTORY: Her Mysterious Past is the Best Revenge… Only He Can Offer Her a Dazzling Future

Fallon, the Marchioness of Mystery, is a celebrated courtesan with her finger on the pulse of high society. She’s adored by men, hated by their wives. No one knows anything about her past, and she plans to keep it that way.

Warrick Fitzhugh will do anything to protect his compatriots in the Foreign Office, including seduce Fallon, who he thinks can lead him to the deadliest crime lord in London. He knows he’s putting his life on the line.

To Warrick’s shock, Fallon is not who he thinks she is, and the secrets she’s keeping are exactly what makes her his heart’s desire.

The second book in a sparkling Regency romance trilogy from acclaimed author Shana Galen following a glittering trio of celebrated courtesans whose fortunes depend on the ton believing the rumors about their mysterious lives.

REVIEW: Here comes the second book of the Jewels of the Ton series by Shana Galen and it’s time for Fallon’s happy ever after.

In the previous book, “When You Give a Duke a Diamond” and the start to this series, she was introduced as the Marchioness of Mystery.

Now if you’ve read that book, you know that they are the two of the Three Diamonds (Lily being the third), courtesans of the demimonde. In case you haven’t had a chance to read the first one, let me just warn you: this series is written to be read in order because of the tread of mystery that is woven throughout all three, and in order to understand and follow that tread, I think you’ll enjoy it much more if you read them in the order they were written.

As far as the story plot goes, Ms. Galen does this with such finesse that no matter how much ahead of the story I think I might be, in the end I am left surprised and frankly thrilled that I couldn’t figure stuff out until she was ready to reveal it to me. I just love it when authors are too clever for me! It makes for a thrilling read! Makes you feel the author appreciates you.

As much as this story was plot driven, I felt that she did an amazing job with characterizing our hero and heroine.

Fallon got her moniker for being a mystery to all, and no one really knew where she came from. Was she, as the rumor had it, a foreign princess?

Our hero Warrick Fitzhugh, who is Queen’s spy, had no problem with using seduction to try and unveil all of her secrets, and I had a front row seat for that journey.

Their story was fraught with danger, mystery, romance and so much running around it made my head spin! Another great thing this author does well. By adding a good amount of action to her stories, she paces her books so well you never realize the end is quickly approaching…nor do you want the book to end.

I also liked the chemistry and romance between Warrick and Fallon. Both were very relatable and likable and both had vulnerabilities that made them interesting separately as much as a couple. Their adventure became mine as well and I now feel invested not only in their story, but in all the Jewels!

“If You Give a Rake a Ruby” has everything a great romance should have; storyline that will hook you with its pace and action; strong, fleshed out three dimensional characters; mystery that you’ll find interesting, entertaining and not predictable; and best of all, sensual and steamy romance.

This is not my first time reading this author and the reason for coming back to her is very simple. I find Shana Galen’s writing unique and unconventional, creative and refreshing; and never, EVER boring. She is my Calgon, and she can `take me away’ any time of day or night!

My Five Quills are enthusiastically given to this nail biter and now the anticipation for Lily’s story officially starts!

*Book provided by the publisher through NetGalley.
*Scorching HOT!

Melanie Friedman for RCJR eZine [published on 3/2013]

 

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