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Lady Rogue

Lady Rogue, May 2018
Royal Rewards #3
by Theresa Romain

Zebra
Featuring: Lady Isabel Morrow; Callum Jenks
288 pages
ISBN: 1420145436
EAN: 9781420145434
Kindle: B074DH39NW
Mass Market Paperback / e-Book
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"A gorgeously written and somewhat surreal romance"

Fresh Fiction Review

Lady Rogue
Theresa Romain

Reviewed by Monique Daoust
Posted April 25, 2018

Romance Historical

Lady Isabel Morrow, daughter of a marquess, has recently discovered a side of her late husband of which she had no notion: Andrew Morrow sold forged paintings. If it became known, her good name would be ruined, and she could never find a suitable husband for her ward Lucy. One person immediately comes to mind: Bow Street Runner Callum Jenks. Callum investigated her husband's death, and Callum and Isabel got to know each other just a tad better than would be proper. That was eighteen months ago, but when Isabel comes to Callum for help in stealing a painting, the police officer, frustrated with the justice system, agrees to break the law for the woman who has unknowingly already stolen his heart.

I knew, from reading the blurb, that LADY ROGUE would stretch the boundaries of historical reality, but Theresa Romain's creativity has never let me down. However, LADY ROGUE is a very odd little book, quite surreal at times; I had the feeling that I was somehow missing a metaphor or an allegory somewhere. LADY ROGUE is a study on Regency society on class differences, on the status of women, on the expectations that were placed on the people. Where I was expecting hi-jinks -- although there were some -- LADY ROGUE is more about two people at a crossroads; it's a character study at which Ms. Romain excels. I'm not quite sure if the whole forgery angle was all that necessary; the purpose was basically to bring Callum and Isabel together, which I believe could have been done through Callum having a second look into Andrew's death. On the other hand, it did provide the author with the opportunity to enchant with her extensive knowledge of art, her sublime understanding of colors, nuances, and shadings whether in her descriptions of paintings of the inner working of the human psyche.

Theresa Romain weaves a different sort of romance between two people yearning for independence, battling existential ennui, at odds with a rigid society that frowns on relationships that defy the accepted standards. While I felt the foundation for LADY ROGUE was rather shaky, and some details questionable, at the core is a fascinating look at the growth of two individuals who have started to doubt of their purpose in life. In the end, Ms. Romain's attention to detail, her acute sense of observation, and her unbelievably gorgeous prose, delicate and powerful, makes it all worthwhile.

Learn more about Lady Rogue

SUMMARY

HER SECRET SCANDAL

As far as London’s high society knows, Lady Isabel Morrow is above reproach. But the truth is rarely so simple. Though the young widow’s passionate fling with dashing Bow Street Runner Callum Jenks ended amicably months ago, she now needs his expertise. It seems Isabel’s late husband, a respected art dealer, was peddling forgeries. If those misdeeds are revealed, the marriage prospects of his younger cousin— now Isabel’s ward—will be ruined.

For the second time, Isabel has upended Callum’s well- ordered world. He’s resolved to help her secretly replace the forgeries with the real masterpieces, as a . . . friend. A proper sort of friend doesn’t burn with desire, of course, or steal kisses on twilight errands. Or draw a willing lady into one passionate encounter after another. Isabel’s scheme is testing Callum’s heart as well as his loyalties. But with pleasure so intoxicating, the real crime would be to resist . . .


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