A lady does not smoke cheroot. She does not ride astride. She does not fence or attend duels. She does not fire a pistol, and she never gambles at a gentlemen’s club.
Lady Calpurnia Hartwell has always followed the rules, rules that have left her unmarried—and more than a little unsatisfied. And so she’s vowed to break the rules and live the life of pleasure she’s been missing.
But to dance every dance, to steal a midnight kiss—to do those things, Callie will need a willing partner. Someone who knows everything about rule-breaking. Someone like Gabriel St. John, the Marquess of Ralston—charming and devastatingly handsome, his wicked reputation matched only by his sinful smile.
If she’s not careful, she’ll break the most important rule of all—the one that says that pleasure-seekers should never fall hopelessly, desperately in love.
Oh wow…I can honestly say that Sarah MacLean has a new fan, and this is the only book of her’s that I have read. I read two reviews that really made me want to read this, one was from Kimba @ Kimba the Caffinated Reader and the other was from Danielle @ Book Whore.
Callie is respectable woman who has gone season after season without any sort of luck when it comes to marriage proposals, so she has been placed on the shelf. She’s sweet, she’s curvy and she’s incredibly intelligent; but the ton thinks she’s plain. When her little sister finds a perfect match she sets out to really live, even if it risks her reputation and requires a lot of sneaking. So she comes up with a rather unique list of things to do, and because of it she finds herself in the path of Gabriel St. John, the Marquess of Ralston. Gabriel is a notorious rake and Callie has been secretly in love with him since she was nineteen.
I fell in love with so many characters in this novel. MacLean really knows how to craft a character in a way that no matter how small their part may be they leave an impression. Callie is such a kind hearted girl who dreams of romance and wants adventure, but she’s not quite used to what adventures entail so she ends up in more than one situation that require a little help to go through with. Callie is surrounded by such passionate personalities that you would think she would be lost among them, but she truly shines in a way that made me adore her all the more. Gabriel is the very definition of rake; he’s charming and a bit of a dandy but he is much deeper than that. He’s fiercely loyal to his family and he thinks himself incapable of love. Gabriel’s journey to discovering the depth of his feelings is truly one that I invested myself in, and the relationship that develops between him and Callie is incredibly steamy but it’s also one that had me cheering for the both of them.
I’m super excited that I’ll get to see the characters again in the next book, and I can’t wait to see more of Gabriel’s brother and sister as well. MacLean really knows how to tell a story and have it so that you are hanging on every word. The romance was fantastic, and the plot was one that made me want the very best for Callie and the rest. It made me laugh, swoon and it even made me want to hit Gabriel on the head for being such a guy. I can not wait to dig into the next book and I just know it’s going to be just as good.