The Devil and the Viscount (Gentlemen of Pleasure Book 1)


HISTORICAL: Gina Wallace is promised to an older and very rigid earl in a type of business transaction negotiated by her own father, as a way of ensuring that their children and her extended family will be part of the nobility. Since her father is in trade and one of the nouveau riche, marriage is the only way to ensure respectability for their family for generations down the line. Gina is willing to do her duty, but she has no feelings for the proper earl. Viscount Rollo Darblay needs to marry a wealthy heiress, as his own father died while deeply in debt. This pair accidentally meets at a hotel where both have stopped for the night. They are able to spend a couple of days together and honestly get to know each other while Gina’s sponsor/chaperone recovers from travel weariness.

Rollo and Gina come across as very comfortable with each other. The author does a credible job of ensuring that their communication seems very natural and genuine. This is not always evident in books, so it is noteworthy here. Additionally, there are some extremely clever machinations that occur in the latter part of this story to overcome the many significant obstacles blocking both protagonists from finding their happily ever-after-endings. Despite these challenges, the story moves forward in an entertaining manner. The tension is ever-present in the background but is not a major driving force for the storyline. The protagonists fulfill that role and are able to keep readers engaged with delightful banter and creative problem-solving. The various plot twists, intriguing interactions, and other conflicts lead to a satisfying conclusion that will thrill and entertain readers.

Carey Sullivan