Author: Anne Mallory
Release Date: 22 February 2011
Number of pages: 372 pages
Series: Book #2 in the Secrets series
Source: e-ARC provided by publisher via NetGalley
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Author's Website, Amazon, Kindle store, Book Depository
Grade: 2 stars
From the first glimpse he knew he must have her — even if only for a single night . . .
Powerful, ruthless, seductive—the lord of London’s underworld—Roman Merrick gets anything he wants . . . and he burns for Charlotte Chatsworth, a polished jewel in the glittering ton. So he engages her debt-ridden gambler father in a game of chance, wagering ten thousand pounds against one night with the man’s exquisite daughter. And Roman Merrick never loses.
But one night is never enough . . .
Charlotte is devastated to learn that her reprobate father has lost her in a card game to the most dangerous man she’s ever met. With the threat of ruin behind every corner, Charlotte embarks upon a perilous path with the man she cannot forget. But in truth, it’s Roman who has everything to lose—for a game undertaken for pleasure alone soon has him gambling his heart. And love and passion unleashed could bring his great, dark empire tumbling down . . .
My Thoughts: I have never read any novels of Anne Mallory, the only reason I immediately wanted to read this book was because of its exciting premise! I mean look at it: rake player wins maiden in a card game, doesn't that sound like something you know would be explosive and full of delicious scenes with the hero's sensual seduction trying to win over the heroine's resistance? I had such high hopes for this novel but unfortunately it let me down.
I gave up reading it after 57%, and I got there after long weeks of forcing myself to pick it up and give it another and another chance and see if it got better. Which sadly for me it did not.
The characters were somehow too clichéd and uninteresting, and though I tried to find any spark in each of them to ignite my interest in either of the characters and get to like them, I couldn't really. The attraction between the hero and heroine was dragged out and due to that lost any heat and chemistry, and felt like something that should be titillating was sadly only boring.
The writing to me felt dragging and thanks to these two complaints combined, an exciting premise turned out to be dull and boring and didn't manage to engage my attention.
Verdict: I have seen good and lukewarm reviews of this book, so I guess this is something of a personal taste and preference, I would recommend you read a chapter or two and get a feel of the book through an excerpt before buying it.