Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Rogue's Wager by Christi Caldwell

London, 1821

Lord Robert Dennington, the Marquess of Westfield, has long reveled in the freedom afforded him as the ducal heir. He knows he must someday do right by the Somerset line, but he’s in no hurry to give up his carefree existence.

Helena Banbury is a bookkeeper in a gentleman’s gambling club, adept at analyzing numbers and accounts but helpless for lack of influence. She’s never belonged among the nobility on the gaming hell floors, but neither does she feel completely herself among the men who run the Hell and Sin Club, despite the fact that they are family. The once-illiterate girl from the streets wants more than the gilded walls her protective cage can offer.

When Robert mistakenly enters her chambers one night, Helena is forced out of her predictable life and thrust into the glittering world of Society. Will the charms of the marquess prove more perilous than any danger she ever knew on the streets?

This regency romance features great characters and some believable dramatic twists. Helena and Robert are both strong characters who make an enjoyable couple, and the secondary characters are also well-drawn (for the most part). The reason I didn't give more stars is the fact that I walked away with more questions than answers regarding Helena's early life. I don't understand how she fell in with her street brothers (and her real brother) given that he was apparently separated from his family at birth, I don't understand why her father never actually searched for his family, and I don't know how Ryker and Helena know who their father is given all that separates them from him. I assume some of these questions might be answered in the next book in the series, but feel they needed to be addressed in this one to make the narrative more believable. Still, all in all a decent read.

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