Sunday, October 23, 2011

Historical ARC Review: Too Wicked to Wed by Cara Elliott

TOO WICKED THE WED by Cara Elliott
GENRE: Historical
PUBLISHER: Forever (October 25,2011)
ISBN: 9780446584579

Irresistible temptation...
Outspoken and independent, Lady Alexa Hendrie is happiest in the quiet of the country, where she is free to run her family's estate as she chooses. But when her brother's recklessness forces her to London, a chance encounter with the ton's most wicked rake---and his searing kiss---awaken a longing for adventure.
Undeniable passion...
A man of many secrets, Connor Linsley, the Earl of Killingworth, uses his rakehell reputation to avoid innocent young ladies and their marriage-minded mothers. Yet even his most shocking behavior can't dissuade Lady Alexa. From the moment her lips press against his, their fates are irrevocably sealed. Together they enter a shadowy world of intrigue, deception, and desire. Consumed by a passion beyond their wildest imaginings, Conor and Alexa must risk all they hold dear for a chance at love. But can they escape the danger that pursues them? Or will their own fiery attraction be their ultimate undoing? (source: back cover)
Where to Find Cara: Author Site | Twitter | Facebook
Where to Buy: Amazon | Kindle | B&N/Nook | Book Depository
Book Extras: Read an Excerpt
I loved it.

Holy carp! Lady Alexa Hendrie is my favorite heroine of the week. She's got fire running through her veins, isn't afraid to tell it like it is and can hold her own against the scariest (to most, except his nearest and dearest) rake in all of London, Connor Linsley, the Earl of Killingworth.

Connor Linsley, typical man that he is, tends to push others away when they get close. He's guarded and protected his heart (sorry Casey from The Bachelor for stealing your catchphrase) for so long, he doesn't know how to let his barriers down until a hellion and a proper lady at that, storms into his gaming hell to find her brother.

Their first kiss sparks something inside both of them. Of course, Connor was trying to teach her a lesson but he might have gotten schooled a little. Alexa doesn't understand her reaction to Connor's kiss and tries to push thoughts of him away.

Connor gets robbed, not only at the gaming tables but all the money in the safe. He is short of funds so his friend Gryff loans him the money. In turn, Connor writes an note making Gryff half owner of The Wolf's Lair. And thus the adventure begins... Alexa goes out, dressed like a man, with her cousin, back to Connor's gaming hell. She's got a knack for cards and wins quite a bit of blunt. Gryff is playing at her table and totally soused. He wants to win back what he's lost and the only thing he's got left is the note. Alexa, with Lady Luck on her side, wins the hand. She's not part owner of The Wolf's Lair.

Between Connor getting shot, Alexa insisting on taking him to Linsley Close to recover, pretending like they're newlyweds and trying to discover who wants to kill Connor, the sparks fly. Their chemistry is explosive, their passion sizzles off the pages and their banter is off the charts hilarious. Alexa isn't afraid to stand up to Connor who is absolutely taken aback by her fiery spirit. With the help of Gryff and Cam, Connor tracks down the person trying to kill him. Alexa tries not to fall in love with her faux husband yet in the end yields to her feelings. It takes Alexa being kidnapped for Connor to realize she's the one (pfft. Typical man!).

She was an inexperienced young lady and he was a world-weary rake. Despite his many faults, he had never preyed on innocents.
And yet...
Just how innocent could she be? She had dared to disguise herself as a man, she had dared gamble with rakish gamesters. What other rules had she flaunted? What other risks had she taken? He was still sure she hadn't much experience in being kissed. But that didn't necessarily mean she hadn't much experience with men.
OVERALL: To borrow a phrase from Connor, Ye God! What an excitingly fast paced start to a series. The Lords of Midnight (Connor, Gryff and Cam) are deliciously wicked, charming and play off each other like the Three Stooges (only a jillion times more good looking). From the moment Alexa storms into the gaming hell Connor owns, to Linsley Close in the country, back to the rumor filled ballrooms of London, there's a spark waiting to be ignited at every turn, at every touch, at every look and at every word exchanged between the two. Action, adventure, a shot in the dark, a passionate love story, betrayal and kissing (lots of kissing). I am looking forward to what Ms. Elliott has next in store for us aka Gryff's story.

***review copy provided by publisher***

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