Type: Historical Romance
My Copy: Edelweiss
She is the most powerful woman in Britain, A queen of the London Underworld … But no one can ever know. He is the only man smart enough to uncover the truth, Putting all she has at risk . . . Including her heart.
By day, she is Lady Georgiana, sister to a Duke, ruined before her first season in the worst kind of scandal. But the truth is far more shocking—in London’s darkest corners, she is Chase, the mysterious, unknown founder of the city’s most legendary gaming hell. For years, her double identity has gone undiscovered . . . until now. Brilliant, driven, handsome-as-sin Duncan West is intrigued by the beautiful, ruined woman who is somehow connected to a world of darkness and sin. He knows she is more than she seems and he vows to uncover all of Georgiana’s secrets, laying bare her past, threatening her present, and risking all she holds dear . . . including her heart.
I love this series and have waited patiently for each new book about these incredible men and the strong women that have caught their eye. This is the fourth book and after reading a teaser I knew this book could not come fast enough and I was very happy after reading.
Lady Georgina Pearson is the daughter of a duke and sister of another. She had the world at her fingers when she made the mistake of believing she was in love with a stable boy at a young age and today, ten years later she still feels the sting of being abandoned by society. Throughout the years she has snubbed her nose at those same people, getting her revenge as one of the owners of the most scandalous gaming hells in all of Britain, The Fallen Angel. Only a few know who she really is, but she holds the most prestigious men in the palm of her hand and has crushed many who have betrayed her. Three of the owners are well known and are frequently at the Angel, but Chase who is the most mysterious is never seen, probably because he is a she.
Duncan West is the owner of five London publications he is also considered the fifth virtual partner because he built a name and fortune on the scandals and secrets he received from Chase. He has never met Chase and always receives the messages through Anna, the madam at The Angel. When Georgina asks him to help her become the toast of the town through snippets in his newspaper, he agrees but when he finds out she and Anna are the same person he also wants some help from her, and he does not even know the best part about Georgina and Anna.
The Rules of Scoundrels is an amazing series, I loved each book that revealed these incredible men who have gone from rags to riches and win the women of their choice. The Fallen Angel is a force unto itself in the city and the four who own and run it weld the power to take down the most influential men in London, most people tread lightly when dealing with them.
Georgina is a powerful heroine, she is smart, brave and protective and I adore her. From the time she was ruined years ago she had two things on her mind, get even with society and protect her daughter. Thankfully she had the help of her brother to gain the means to do just that. Throughout the ten years she has amassed a fortune and the power to bring down anyone in the country, only she found that her daughter was still vulnerable. I also found that Georgina is scared inside, she comes across as this powerful person, either as herself or Chase but she is hiding from the world.
Duncan is an enigma, he is extremely powerful but also lives in fear of one man who could crush him. I actually liked that both Georgina and Duncan have this vulnerability within them. The two together are an unlikely couple at first and although there is an attraction and some heated chemistry there are many things in the way, she wants a titled husband and does not want to reveal who she is and Duncan is not looking for a partner as he believes he will never be far from his past. Duncan also believes that Georgina/Anna belongs to Chase and as the attraction grows between them he gets angry at Chase, wanting to reveal him in public. Unfortunately he is not the only one that wants to know.
The pace of the story flows well , there is blackmail, lies, deceits and intrigue that are rampant in this book and it is very exciting to read. Many things are not revealed until the end which made me want to keep reading, I enjoy knowing the secrets but I am always anxious to know how others will react when they find out. Secondary characters are key to the story, this is the final book in the series and in many scenes we are treated to all the scoundrels along with their amazing women, I also like Georgina’s daughter Caroline, she is an extremely smart young girl and added much to the story.
The story can be read as a standalone as the author brings the reader up to date seamlessly however I would recommend them all as each scoundrel’s book is worth reading.
I give Never Judge a Lady by her Cover by Sarah MacLean 4.25 stars!