Wallflower Lady Beatrice Bentley longs to remain in the wilds of Cornwall to complete her etymological dictionary. Too bad her brother’s Gothic mansion is under renovation. How can she work with an annoyingly arrogant and too-handsome rogue swinging a hammer nearby?
Rogue. Scoundrel. Call him anything you like as long as you pay him.
Navy man Stamford Wright is leaving England soon and renovating Thornhill House is just a job. It’s not about the duke’s bookish sister or her fiery copper hair. Or the etymology lessons the prim-yet-alluring lady insists on giving him. Or the forbidden things he'd love to teach her.
They say never mix business with pleasure. But when Beatrice and Ford aren't arguing, they're kissing.
Sometimes temptation proves too strong to resist…even if the cost is a heart.
I was excited when I learned that Lady Beatrice, the bookish younger sister of the Duke of Thorndon (hero of Bell's last book, One Fine Duke) was slated to be the heroine of Love is a Rogue and even more excited when I discovered her hero would be that deliciously handsome, but annoyingly pesky, carpenter working at their family's country estate. I'm happy to report that these two gave me everything I could have hoped for...and more.
As the author has stated, Love is a Rogue is a gender-flipped Beauty and the Beast meets HGTV (pick your favorite renovation show) story and it totally works. It's also a cross-class romance which is one of my favorite tropes. And I'll toss one more trope in. It's a bit of a coming of age story for Beatrice. She's never been allowed to show her true self to the world, either verbally or physically. Books have been her best friends and though she has established close relationships with fellow wallflowers, her interactions with men are awkward at best. It was such a delight to watch her learn to spread her wings, stand her ground, and open her heart to the possibilities of life and love. Her masquerade party entrance may have had me cheering out loud.
And then there's Ford. Man, did I fall hard for this hero. He's not really a rogue but he does have roguish tendencies, such as being an incorrigible flirt. But he's an honorable man. And he sees Beatrice for who she really is. He protects her, motivates her, desires her, celebrates her. I love how he doesn't allow her to push him away, how he communicates with her, and encourages her to explore all the possibilities life has to offer.
Love is a Rogue launches Lenora Bell's Wallflowers vs Rogues series with a story that's brimming with sparkling banter, sensual passion, laugh-out-loud humor, heart-tugging emotion, and a happy ending. If you're looking for a historical romance mood lifter, don't miss Love is a Rogue.
For more insight into this story, click here to read my Q&A with Lenora Bell.