The Danger in Tempting an Earl by Sophie Barnes
Book Three of the At The Kinsborough Ball series
Publisher: Avon Books
Publication Date: July 29, 2014
Rating: 2 stars
Source: eARC from Edelweiss
***Warning: this is an adult book, and for the eyes of mature readers***
Summary (from Goodreads):
Lucien Marvaine never thought he was good enough for Katherine. As the younger son of an earl, he didn't have a title or prospects. Then fate steps in and gives him a second chance, and this new Earl of Roxbury is determined to make the beautiful Kate his own . . . one touch . . . one kiss at a time.
Katherine never thought of herself as a temptress, certainly not with Lucien. Why, she's known him almost all her life! Yet as she waltzes in Lucien's arms at the Kingsborough Ball, she can't help but be drawn to him. Has he always been this hard and masculine? And where did those dimples come from? Kate is not looking for a husband . . . but how can she not surrender to Lucien's charms when love is at stake?
What I Liked:
Well. This one was not to my liking, very much. This series started brilliantly, in my opinion. The Trouble with Being a Duke was SO GOOD, a gorgeous Cinderella retelling, and I gave it four stars. The second book was The Scandal in Kissing an Heir, and that one was an okay novel, a Rapunzel retelling, garnering three stars from me. I'm not sure which tale this book is retelling, but it got two stars from me. So it would seem that the series is declining in quality, I'm afraid.
For what it's worth, I liked Lucien a lot. Lucian and Kate were friends when they were younger - they grew up together, along with Crossby, who ended up wooing Kate and marrying her, NOT Lucien. This story is not typical, because instead of Kate being in love with Lucien from the beginning, it's Lucien who has always been in love with Kate, and Kate never had a clue.
I must say, I rather hate this type of romance. See more below. So that kind of ruined the romance for me. And that's a really big part of the HISTORICAL ROMANCE novel. Also, the secondary plot was stupid.
Also, I hate widower-type books as well. When the woman's husband died, leaving her with children, or even without children, just the title. I don't know why this bothers me so much. The same goes with a widower male. Not a fan of that story, though you don't see it too often in historical romance novels. I think the only widower historical romance novel I've liked is Elizabeth Hoyt's Thief of Shadows. I loveeee Hoyt's books.
But as I mentioned before, I really, really liked Lucien. He is the reason why this book gets two stars, as a opposed to one star. I loved how much he loved Kate, how hard he worked to get her to notice him and his feelings, all of the selfish things that didn't seem selfish at all, in the name of love.
Now. Let's get to what I didn't like.
What I Did Not Like:
The romance. The secondary plot. Kate. Ugh ugh ugh. There were too many little AND big things that really weren't all that great. I really enjoyed the first book of this series. This series had a lot of promise, especially with the unique way that the author set up this series, but this book, and the previous one, to be honest, weren't that good.
I really did not like the romance. Lucien is in love with Kate. They were childhood friends. I'm not sure why I don't like it when the male is in love with the female from childhood. Personally, I'm not sure I like it when the female is in love with the male from childhood. A few years, maybe, but childhood? Ehhh, not necessarily the story I like to read. At any rate, I dislike this romance setup. Lucien is so smitten, his love for Kate never wavering, even when she married his rival (their childhood peer).
For that matter, I seriously do not like Kate. She married Crossby, who never loved her, but married her to spite Lucien. What?! Are you serious?! Did Kate herself ever love Crossby? Because it didn't seem like it. Kate had her pick of many men, including Lucien, but she chose horrible Crosby, who ended up treating her pretty terribly. I would have chosen Lucien any day.
So when you hate the romance in a ROMANCE novel, that's kind of the whole book right there. This book really had no chance, as soon as I realized how the romance was set up. Also? It was a bunch of crap, in my opinion. So much back-and-forth, indecision, stupid wavering from Kate. Lucien flirts with her, proclaims his feelings for her, drops everything for her, and that's still not good enough?! Spoiled b****. She acts so entitled and snobby, especially since she has her precious daughter (with her late husband, of course). He proposes marriage to her over and over, and she refuses. But of course, when she finally deems that she is ready, and he doesn't ask her, suddenly he doesn't love her, right?! Are you f***ing kidding me?! The man asked you to marry him HOW MANY TIMES?! Of course he's not asking at the moment, how many times can a man have his pride wounded like that!? Ugh.
Moving on to the secondary plot. Oh my gosh. It revolves around Kate, and it's so stupid. It really pops out of nowhere, and I rather dislike it a lot. It just proves to me that Lucien is an honorable, decent, love-struck gentleman, and Kate deserves to be run over by a wagon. NOT that the conflict is necessarily directly her fault, but gosh she is so dumb. There is one thing that she did that is SO DUMB - I can't say the specifics but ugh, who is that stupid?! WHO?!
I've probably said enough, right? Steer clear of this one, unfortunately. The first book in the series was amazing! Magical! Captivating! This one... not so much.
Would I Recommend It:
No, not at all, unfortunately. I'm so happy that I stuck through this series (so far), but I think I've reached my limit with the series. We'll see when the premise of the next book is released (if there is another book in the works). I would TOTALLY recommend the first book, The Trouble with Being a Duke, but not the second book or this one.
2 stars. Lucien gets those two stars - I really like him. I had hoped for more from this book, given my immense love for the first book, but this book was even worse than the second book (not that the second book was horrible, but it wasn't great). Try the first book in this series, or Sophie Jordan's A Good Debutante's Guide To Ruin!
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