Top positive review
Loved It, BUT... **Spoiler Alert** **4 1/2 Stars**
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on May 24, 2013
I absolutely loved this book! The characters were wonderful, the chemistry between Sutton and Alexandra electric, the villains easy to hate. I did, however; have a couple of issues with the book, which is why even though I gave it 5 stars, I'd say it is more of a 4.8 star rating.
First, here's why the book is so good. Sutton is a sexy, seductive, alpha male (sigh), a marquess that is much sought after by the ladies of the ton. He, and his two best friends are collectively known as " the wickeds," a nickname that has stuck with them since school days. He and Alexandra meet at a ball when he finds her hiding behind the curtains in the library where she has just overheard an exchange between him and another woman (no they did not have sex, though not for want of trying on the woman's part).
Anyhow, Sutton thinks Alexandra is stalking him (he has a very high opinion of himself where women are concerned) and is dismissive and rude telling her that she was not "marchioness material." Alexandra is outraged and calls Sutton a series of names including a peacock! I laughed so much during that exchange, that my husband thought I was crazy! Sutton is absolutely stunned and amused by Alexandra's response to him. Afterall, no one had ever dared to give him such a set down. He is immediately attracted to Alex and she, of course, cannot help but be attracted to him. It doesn't help that he has a fetish for curls and Alexandra has a head full of them! When I say the chemistry between these two is combustible I mean like man! I got goose-bumps just reading about Sutton's blowing on Alex's neck!
There are a few villains, including Sutton's stepmother who is a class A bitch (sorry about the language, but honestly there is no other way to describe her). There is also Alex's uncle, who is her guardian, and of course the man her uncle has chosen for her to marry. From their first meeting Alex and Sutton continue to bump into one another. Sutton's grandmother tries to play matchmaker for the two, as she thinks Alex is perfect for Sutton.
In any event, while Alex is fighting with her attraction to Sutton, she also has to deal with her uncle's attempts to marry her off. Finally, after he threatens to sell her beloved estate if she doesn't agree to marry the man he's chose for her, she capitulates. Runyon, Alex's intended, is Sutton's stepmother's cousin. Sutton is fully aware of what type of man Runyon is and thus takes steps to extricate Alex from her engagement.
The story is so compelling that I actually experienced a wide range of emotions while reading this book, including fear, hatred, anger, sadness, and joy. I actually got teary-eyed when reading Sutton's reaction to Alex's news that she had become engaged to Runyon.
As good as the book is; nevertheless, I did have a few issues with it. For one, there are a number of editing errors. There are several and they are noticeable. As a matter of fact, if the book wasn't so compelling they would have been very distracting (at least for me.) I've read a lot of e-books and editing errors are such a standard that I hardly notice them and have learned to read around them. So, when I do notice them, it's significant.
My second issue with the book is the author's improper use of the titles of address for the characters. I am a historical romance buff and, my favorite time period is the regency era. This means that I am very familiar with the titles and proper forms of address used during that period. I've noticed that many authors make mistakes with titles. I can't understand why when it is so easy to find out how to use the titles correctly. Just google it for God's sake! Most times I am able to read around the improper addresses and while I notice them, they don't really bother me. But, in this case Ms. Ayers took her error to a whole other level.
Sutton is a Marquess. His full name is Sutton Reynolds, Marquess of Cambourne. The proper form of address is Lord Cambourne, NOT Lord Reynolds. The same is true for his stepmother, Lady Cambourne (not Lady Reynolds) and his grandmother who is the Dowager Lady Cambourne. His sister, being the daughter of a Marquess, has the courtesy title of Lady. So her proper form of address is Lady Miranda NEVER Lady Reynolds!
Ms. Ayers compounded her mistake in a most grievous way when in one instance she has Lady Miranda (Sutton's sister) ask Alex to please not address her so formally because everytime she hears someone say "Lady Reynolds" she thinks they are referring to her mother or g/mother! The problem is that Miranda is NOT Lady Reynolds and would never be addressed as such. She would be referred to as Lady Miranda, and introduced as Lady Miranda Reynolds. Furthermore, as I stated earlier, neither her mother or g/mother's proper form of address is Lady Reynolds. After that dialogue by Lady Miranda, I almost gnashed my teach in frustration each time a character was addressed in the improper manner. It was extremely distracting and beyond aggravating!
But for those two issues, I would have said this book deserves a 10 star rating (if Amazon had such a rating!) It's such a shame to write such an awesome story and then have it ruined (or rather have it's quality reduced) by minor mistakes which are easily corrected. I look forward to other books by this author. Nevertheless, the improper titles and incorrect forms of address were so painful for me that I cannot conceive of voluntarily reading another book such as this one...no matter how good. It was THAT annoying! If, however, Ms. Ayers address that particular issue in her second book, I'd be first in line to read it!
FYI, this is absolutely not a clean romance. Happy reading!