Genre: MF Historical Romance, explicit
Author: Jennifer Ashley
Release Date: August 2011
Previous Book in Series: Lady Isabella’s Scandalous Marriage
Cameron Mackenzie is a man who loves only horses and women—in that order—or so his mistresses say.
Ainsley Douglas is a woman with a strong sense of justice and the desire to help others—even if that means sneaking around a rakish man’s bedchamber.
Which is exactly where Cam finds her—six years after he caught her the first time. Only then, she convinced Cam she was seeking a liaison, but couldn’t go through with it because of her husband. Now a widow, she’s on a mission to retrieve letters that could prove embarrassing to the queen. Cam has no interest in Ainsley’s subterfuge, but he vows to finish what they started those many years ago. One game, one kiss at a time, he plans to seduce her. And what starts out as a lusty diversion may break Cam’s own rules—and heal the scars of a dark and damaging past…
What I Liked:
This series just keeps getting better and better! While I felt that the setup for this couple was pretty weak in the last book (they walked past each other and shared a look), the romance in this book was really strong. In fact, this might just be my favorite book of three I’ve read in this series so far.
Cameron is super messed up. Of course, he had to grow up in the same abusive household as his brothers, but it gets so much worse. Basically, his first wife was batshit insane. And that left him with physical, mental, and emotional scars. I really felt bad for him, even as he would do and say things that were frustrating.
Ainsley is also a great character. Of all the Mackenzie females so far, I probably identify with her the most. She is sneaky and mischievous, but she still has a strong sense of duty and loyalty. Her plot of having to retrieve some stolen letters wasn’t very interesting, but it set in motion her interactions with Cameron, so I can’t find to much fault with it.
The best things about this series, though, really is seeing the whole Mackenzie family together. They are such an interesting and *gasp* scandalous bunch. It’s great to see the continued characters growth of the couples from the past books. My goodness, are they breeding like rabbits (Which makes sense, considering how much they’re constantly going at it on page!).
What I Didn’t:
Not much, to be honest. I guess Cam’s first wife was a little bit too crazy for my taste. It was a bit over the top. The setup for the next couple (Hart and Eleanor) was a bit awkward in this book. There’s actually a scene just about them, where our main characters aren’t even present. It was a fine scene, but it felt like it was a bit forced into the book. There was probably a better way for the characters to have an interaction to make the reader anticipate reading the next novel.
I’m pretty sure that this book is my new favorite in this series. Cameron is darker and more troubled than his brothers, and Ainsley is a nice mix of obediently loyal and slyly feisty. They have really great chemistry, and for how dark the book can sometimes get (Cam’s past is a bit of a nightmare), there is a nice balance of angst to humor, fluff, and, of course, a happily ever after.
My Rating: 4/5 (Really liked! Favorite in the series so far)