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Aug 20, 2014

Rogue in Red Velvet by Lynne Connolly

A swoon-worthy hero..

Rogue in Red Velvet by Lynne Connolly
Lyrical Press of Kensington Publishing Corp
August 2014
326 pages ebook
Review Copy provided via publisher for review in Library Journal Xpress

Emperors of London, #1
If Connie loses her standing in society, she risks losing everything…except Alex. 
When country widow Constance Rattigan finds herself in a notorious London brothel instead of at the altar, only one person can save her from the auction block.
Alex Vernon walked away from Connie once before, when he discovered her engagement. Now that her fiancĂ© has betrayed her, Lord Ripley doesn’t intend to leave her again. But Connie has other ideas… She won’t marry him until her name is cleared. Alex decides to make Connie’s wishes come true, but it’s not that easy, even with the help of his powerful relatives known as the Emperors of London.

The last thing in Connie's mind as she is cataloging her godfather's ancient books among the cobwebs is that she will catch the eye of a sexy aristocrat, especially since she is a widower already engaged to Dankworth. When the powerful Lord Ripley makes Connie's acquaintance he finds Connie charming and alluring specifically because she is the opposite of the young debutantes who chase him tirelessly. It quickly turns into a love match between the two but there are quite a few obstacles tossed their way which includes the diabolical fiancĂ© of Connie. Dankworth proves his worthlessness effortlessly but goes to extremes when he sells Connie at a whorehouse. Lord Ripley is there to catch her as she falls, but in the Georgian era where society means everything, will Connie be allowed to remain in polite London aristocratic society?

The passionate side to this rags to riches romance is not bashfully told as Lord Ripley teaches Connie what lovemaking should feel like. Readers will enjoy the fast-paced romance as well as the courageous main characters who are honorable and easy to like, while the villain epitomizes evil. The subtle hints regarding the unresolved and suspenseful subplot are welcome teasers of things to come in the next Emperors of London novel, which I would be happy to indulge in as well.