Phillippa Latham has always been a good girl! Virtuous and scandal free. Her mother insisted and instructed her to be that way. How then could her mother act in such a way? Phillippa follows her mother to try to stop her from ruining the family, unwittingly running headlong into danger herself! Lady Phillippa has had many offers of marriage and turned them all down. She wants to marry for love. No one could blame her. Her parents example of unbridled hostility at best has set her on this course, but now, with her mother's scandal looming, Phillippa must find a husband, and quickly! When she runs into the ton's most notorious rake, she is shocked at her instant attraction to this dangerous man. Lord Sevrin does not help the situation by his own attraction getting the better of him. But she is not for him. he knows this as well as he knows if she is seen with him, it is over for her. Only ruination can come of it.
Lady Phillippa decides that Lord Sevrin would be the best person to ask about the men on her husband hunting list since he is a rake, he would know how other men act when they are not trying to woo a woman. This was sound thinking but was tinged by the slightest bit of need to see him on her part.
Unfortunately, Lady Phillippa gets caught up in Sevrin's own dealings with people of lesser birth and morals and is then in more danger than ever. Lord Sevrin feels he needs to protect her, he can't ruin another woman! He had already done that once and would never again. Now Lord Ambrose tortures himself with boxing and celibacy. Unlike many "heroes" I have read, he is not a relentless debaucher trying to erase what he has done.
The way he responds to Lady Phillippa seems harsh at times, but once the whole story unfolded, I completely understood why he would react that way.
I really enjoyed the storyline of this 3rd installment of the Secrets & Scandals series! We have met a few of the characters in the previous books, but I think if you haven't read books one and two, this would still be a great book! The way Darcy Burke writes is very flowing. You glide through the story like a fly on the wall. I love the dialog she comes up with, never a simpering miss or a foppish man, but thoughtful and insightful conversations that are real. I enjoyed the undercurrent of need with Lady Phillippa and Lord Ambrose as well. The slow drawing out of the story didn't affect the fact that I wanted to read it as quickly as possible! I devoured this one and I'm ok with that! LOL
This was a fantastic book that I will probably wait a year and read again! I highly recommend it!
I give this Novel a heat rating of 8 out of 10!