Not every lady plays by the rules…
Lady Lavinia Vaile knows what happens to a woman who puts her faith in society. For her, it was a disastrous marriage to a depraved man—one she threatened to shoot when she left him. Now Lavinia lives outside of society’s strict conventions, hosting private gambling parties. It’s only when her husband is shot dead that Lavinia finds herself in terrible danger…
A former judge in India’s high court, Maximilian Harrison will do anything he can to help Lavinia. In the darkest of times, he held on to thoughts of her and the love they once shared. Now he risks his own position in society―along with his ambitions―in order to clear her name. Yet as desire reignites between them, Lavinia remains caught up in secrets and shame. Her only salvation is to do the unthinkable…and trust in both Maximilian and love.
Wendy LaCapra is a promising new historical romance author who weaves lots of action and excitement into her story, but in the future I hope she will watch her Americanisms! Another one of those concept series where everyone’s in a secret society of some sort, the first book, Lady Vice seemed to be a really quick read. I felt that with so much going on and so many characters, it would have benefitted from being a longer book, taking place over a longer period of time. There’s a really interesting story here, but it happened too fast.
Set in the 1780s – love the Georgian era! – this book incorporates my favourite trope: the reunion romance. Our heroine was forced into an awful marriage that included sexual abuse and humiliation, while our hero has spent all this time thinking he was dumped for a better offer. When we meet our lead characters he is on his way to inform her not only has her husband been murdered, but she is a suspect.
As I said, this is a great story with a lot going on. However, the reunion happened over the space of a couple of days. There was no time for years of pain and misunderstanding to be dealt with. I would have liked a much longer timeframe for the story to be done justice.
And argh, but those Americanisms! The past participle of spit is spat. A full stop, not a period, ends a sentence. Too often the book used the modern American trend of dropping adverbs from sentences.
The history was well-researched but the language needed a lot more work.
My impression of this “first book” is that this is an author with great ideas and some solid research, and with a bit more work I think she could become an author I’d love to read.
Review copy provided by NetGalley.