Tag: Marguerite Kaye

Guest Review: Rumors That Ruined a Lady by Marguerite Kaye

Posted April 26, 2014 by Judith in Reviews | 0 Comments

Rumors that Ruined a LadyJudith’s review of Rumors that Ruined a Lady by Marguerite Kaye

Amongst the gossip-hungry ton, no name has become more synonymous with sin than that of Lady Caroline Rider, cast out by her husband and disowned by her family. Rumour has it that the infamous Caro is now seeking oblivion in the opium dens of London!

There’s only one man who can save her: notorious rake Sebastian Conway, Marquis of Ardhallow. Soon Caro is installed in his country home, warming his bed, but their passion may not be enough to protect them once news of their scandalous arrangement breaks out.

I think that all of us have to honestly own up to the fact that we guard our reputations with care at every juncture in our lives.  Even in today’s world where “anything goes,” a good reputation is worth its weight in gold.  This was especially true in this novel set in the 19th century when little value was given to the inner qualities of an individual.  Rather, one’s wealth and social connections, one’s family and their social and political importance was what was truly valued.    This was a reality that Lady Caroline learned painfully and one within which she was forced to live by an uncaring husband and a family who turned away from her when she needed them the most.  Little wonder that Lord Sebastian found her intoxicated with opiates to such a degree that he feared for her life.

This novel is not your Barbara Cartland type of Regency, full of witticisms and humor, conforming to the tried and true format of most historical romances.  This story is about trouble with a capital “T” and all of it falling on a woman who simply wanted to escape a marriage forced upon her by an uncaring father whose sole purpose was to be sure his offspring fared splendidly in the game of Marriage Chess.  Little care was given to the difficulties his daughters must suffer at the hand of abusive or neglectful spouses.   There is most definitely a very dark side to this novel and an edgy sense throughout.  The story content is very good and the writing is wonderful.  The author has kept the tension level consistent throughout and the reader has no doubt that Lady Caroline was in a terrible situation had it not been for some gutsy people who were willing to go to bat for her in attempting to bring some semblance of peace to her life.  That she had an opportunity to find love is also a part of this, especially as she had been victimized by father and husband, both of whom looked upon her as an inanimate possession.  Her worth had decreased steadily as the years went by without a child so that it was of little consequence to ruin her in the hopes that she would die of in some way free up her husband so he could move on to the next “baby machine.”

I found this novel to be particularly engaging.  I love historical romance but I really love those romances that bring a new twist, a new sense of a different reality to the story.  This author has given us a novel that will hold the attention right from the beginning and will engage the imagination of the reader to an extraordinary degree.  This story is indeed a love story but it is not an easy one to read.  No easy solutions here.  No bright and fluffy romps or easy friendship.  To be Caroline’s friend was to invite the same fate that had tainted her.  The people in this novel are gutsy and know exactly what it will cost them to get involved with her or to offer any assistance.  She is a throw-away human being and the fact that she is a woman makes throwing her away even easier.

Lord Sebastian is a fascinating character as well.  He is an acknowledged rake of some sizable proportion yet when he retires to his country estate he is quite frankly a recluse.  He seems to prize his seclusion as much as he does his ability to live scandalously when he is in London.  He does indeed understand Caro’s situation but it takes him a bit of time to come around to supporting her efforts to reclaim her life.  Here again the author has written a character that is most definitely “outside the box” and one that will perk up the interests of those romance fans that are getting a bit jaded at the usual Regency tale.

I found this novel to be vastly entertaining and one that was difficult, if not impossible to put down.  Read it in one sitting, if truth be told.  Loved the fact that there were no easy solutions and no obvious resolution to the crisis of the story.  It is always more interesting to me if even a romance novel doesn’t give up its secrets too easily.  I had not read anything by this author previously but I was impressed with her obvious control of the writing craft, her economical use of words–she said exactly what she meant–and the full and thorough way she developed these very unusual people.  I found some of the background or peripheral characters to be very interesting and all of them were absolutely necessary to the story.  No packing the gallery on this one, folks.

So I hope you’ll get this book and come to enjoy it as much as I have.  Again I emphasize that this will not be an easy book to read but I think the time and effort spent on doing so will prove well worth it.  I give it a rating of 4.25 out of 5.

You can read more from Judith at Dr J’s Book Place.

This title is available from Harlequin Historical.  You can buy it here or here in e-format.  This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Review: Rumors That Ruined a Lady by Marguerite Kaye

Posted October 18, 2013 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Amongst the gossip-hungry ton, no name has become more synonymous with sin than that of Lady Caroline Rider, cast out by her husband and disowned by her family. Rumor has it that the infamous Caro is now seeking oblivion in the opium dens of London!

There’s only one man who can save her: notorious rake Sebastian Conway, Marquis of Ardhallow. Soon Caro is installed in his country home, warming his bed, but their passion may not be enough to protect them once news of their scandalous arrangement breaks out.

Lady Caroline “Caro” isn’t in the best place when Sebastian Conway finds her. In fact she’s ingested opium and is at death’s door. Despite the fact that Sebastian tells himself that it’s a bad idea to get involved he still saves her and takes her back to his country home to recuperate.

Caro and Sebastian have a tumultuous relationship that started 10 years earlier when Carol was just 16. They met a time or two over the years and there was always an attraction and to me, an intimate tension that neither knew what to do with. Two years before current times they had met yet again – after Sebastian had been gone to the Continent for 4 years. This time the sexual tension was palpable and they ended up having sex. Needless to say when Sebastian found out that Caro was married and had been for 3 years he was pissed at not being told. They parted with bad words and planned to never see each other again.

Now Caro is at his home and they find that they can eventually forgive each other and become friends. Caro’s husband has spread rumors about her which aren’t true just because she left him. Caro left him because she felt trapped in a horrible relationship – one where her husband physically abused her. Sebastian isn’t about to let her return to her husband but Caro can’t see how she can stay as a guest at Sebastian’s house without creating more rumors. Caro’s father has disowned her and she sees no help in removing herself from the situation with her husband, but she refuses to go back to him. When Caro and Sebastian finally realize they love each other it’s a wonderful thing but Caro’s husband still refuses to divorce her. They can’t live together but how can they live without each other?

I have to say that you just never know what you’re going to get when you open a book. This was indeed true about Rumors That Ruined a Lady. When I read the blurb I thought for sure that rumors would be spread, rumors would be found out not to be true and then all would live happily ever after – in the end, a fun read. Wow, I couldn’t have been more wrong. This story was much darker than I expected but much better as well. Not that I expected a bad book but I was moved more by the story than expected

The past story between Sebastian and Caro was a slowly unfolding one that I found myself anticipating the next meeting between the two. The relationship took turns that I was surprised at at times but it was all so good. Sebastian was a bit too easily angered at times but he finally dealt with all of his demons and that smoothed everything out. Caro had so very many issues to deal with and while it would have been easier to ignore them forever I admired her for deciding to finally face them. The resolution of the issues – and those that were not resolved – was something I never would have seen coming. The ending could have been a pat and boring one but it SO wasn’t. I definitely commend Ms. Kaye on her decision to write the story as it truly would have happened rather than making it a storybook ending.

Rumors That Ruined a Lady was a great read. This is my first read by this author but I don’t think it will be my last.

Rating: 4 out of 5 

Maguerite Kaye

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What I Read Last Week

Posted September 17, 2013 by Tracy in Features | 3 Comments

Hey there everyone! How are you? Life here is…interesting. I won’t get into details but I’ll say there’s never a dull moment. lol


I currently have a few giveaways going on the blog…
A digital copy of Protector by Joanne Wadsworth – book 1 in the Magio-Earth series. (YA)
A print copy of Steam Bath: Sweaty Gay Erotica – an anthology of m/m short stories edited by Shane Allison. (this giveaway is US Only)
**My 2013 5 Star Read Giveaway – a list of my 5 star reads (so far) and you can win 1 of them in digital fro the book seller of your choice. 
**And…I’ll have another one coming up this week so check back!

Also, the winner of Blue Hydrangeas by Marianne Sciucco was Crystal C-B – Congratulations! Crystal I’ve already passed your email address off to Marianne so you should get your book soon if you haven’t already.

On to what I read last week:

First up was a novella in Elder Races series by Thea Harrison called The Wicked. The story was about an Owl shifter who was working on security while a group of magical librarians got ancient tomes off of Carling Severin’s island. It was a really good novella. 4 out of 5

Next was Steam Bath: Sweaty Gay Erotic edited by Shane Allison. This was an anthology of short stories all centered around bath houses. Lots of sweat, and lots of sex. 🙂 You can read my review here. 3.75 out of 5

Rumors That Ruined a Lady by Marguerite Kaye was historical romance based around a woman, Caro, who is married and has left her husband. Her hubby then spread rumors about her that were NOT true. Her “friend” Sebastian helps her and saves her life and they end up falling in love. It was a much darker book than expected but really great. This one comes out next month and isn’t to be missed. 4 out of 5 (Is it just me or does the lady on the cover look like Annette Bening??)

My next read was one of the free reads that All Romance eBooks put out in their Fall in Love series giveaway called Tied and True by Marie Harte. The story is about a woman who hears her coworker spouting off that he has a “money shot” of her. She breaks into his house to get the pic but ends up tying him to the bed for most of the weekend to have her way with him. It was a decent short story – and it was free! lol 3 out of 5

The Volatile Amazon by Sandy James is book 4 in the Alliance of the Amazon series. This book follows Sarita the water amazon and her pretty much star crossed relationship with a highlander named Ian. It was a pretty great book and a great end to the series. I’ll post my review of this one next week. 4.25/4.5 out of 5

Edenbrooke (A Proper Romance) by Julianne Donaldson was a great little historical that follows Marianne Daventry as she heads off to Edenbrooke to visit with her sister who’s also visiting there. She meets Philip one of the sons of Edenbrooke but she has no idea that this is the man that her twin sister Cecily has her eye on. The romance is very sweet and I loved watching Philip and Marianne together. 4 out of 5 

(Never) Again by Theresa Paolo is a New Adult story about a girl who is in her first year of college when she meets up with her ex-boyfriend who broke her heart. The book is about her dealing with him, her current boyfriend, her virginity, her brother and others. It was a decent read but I did have some issues with Liz and her manic way of dealing with her life. 3 out of 5 (read for Book Binge)

Lycan’s Mate by Chandler Dee is a short story about a woman/alpha of her pack who is gearing up for the “chase” that will decide who her mate will be. The story is strange and short and kind of leaves you hanging. I was just feeling like it might be something I could get into and then it stopped. Odd, very odd. 1 out of 5

Last for the week was Runaway by Sandy James. This is book 2 in the Safe Havens series. The story is about heiress Cassie Shay who saves 2 men from death – death that her uncle ordered. Those two men, Ty Bishop and Jake Curtis then help Cassie escape from her family who wants her to marry a evil abusive man twice her age. Ty and Cassie fall in love on their way back to White Pines, Montana but the welcome they get in White Pines from Ty’s adopted family isn’t all hearts and butterflies when they find out that Cassie belongs to the Shay family.  I’ll post my review for this one this week.

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
Fighting Fate by Linda Kage
Not Planning on You by Sydney Landon
The Untamed Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley

Happy Reading!

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