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Scandal (Amanda Quick)

3.5 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
Though there are a lot of things that really work in this book — a believable love story, some nice side characters, and sensual love scenes — for me, there were a few too many exaggerated elements that kept kicking me a little out of the story. Emily is a fun female protagonist (she’s already ruined, she’s an investment guru, she’s eccentric and loves it), and Blade is your typical driven-by-revenge hero… but there are just too many moments when it goes a little too far, where Emily’s overly romantic nature and Blade’s obsession with revenge feel forced and a little artificial. Still, Quick’s a talented writer, and I never regret reading any of her books: on balance, this was fun and enjoyable, just not my favorite.
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Mistress (Amanda Quick)

3 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
Quick and entertaining dialogue as well as plentiful character development and interaction still can’t save this book from many of its shortcomings: a mystery/blackmail side plot that is far too predictable and characters who are too larger-than-life to feel believable or allow for empathy.  The premise is interesting — you have a quiet country miss who is purposefully masquerading as a widow and paramour of an infamous earl in order to investigate and root out a blackmailer threatening her aunt’s happiness. She’s an intelligent antiquities specialist, and he’s usually devoted to his more scientific pursuits (fashioning a hydraulic pen, astronomy), but it’s one of those novels where they’re intelligent except when interacting with one another.  They make assumptions, have misunderstandings, et cetera. It’s a very quick and light read, and made for a pleasant few hours, but it’s hard for this to be more than a barely recommend considering the amount of good, solid historical romance out there, some of it by Quick!
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