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New review is now up.

*****

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Lord Jason Lockwood has a horrible reputation, full of madness and vice.  A family scandal almost a decade ago has left him on the outside of society, left to find his own place in the world surrounded by those considered without respectability … like him.  He blatantly throws wild parties full of all manner of debauchery, uncaring that he will not be able to rejoin polite society.  Then he meets Lady Lydia Prewitt.  Lydia is also not well regarded by society, but for a different reason.  Thanks to her gossip-mongering aunt, she is feared instead.  Wanting to find acceptance and a husband to create a family with, Lydia sees the opportunity to improve her standing by helping Lockwood reenter society.  But as they spend time together, Lydia’s feelings for Lockwood grow … can she chance a relationship with him if it means being exiled as well?

Never Love a Scoundrel is the fifth book in Darcy Burke’s “Secrets and Scandals” series and delivers a nice mix of intrigue and passion that is guarantee to keep readers enthralled.  Her characters are wonderfully complex, with flaws and quirks that will draw you in and steal your heart.  Lockwood has scars, not only from his most recent family scandal but from his childhood too, that cause him to exist on the fringes.  He has his reasons, and they are good ones, but they definitely affect his dealings with Lydia.  And there’s a mystery surrounding his half-brother, Ethan, and his activities that are at the core of the book, and Lockwood’s reason for being back in society, that is very engrossing.  Readers of the previous stories will recognize Ethan and the good news is his story will finally be told in the next book.

This is the first of this series that I’ve read and there are some characters and plot points that move throughout the series (or at least from book to book), but I was easily able to keep up.  It does end with a bit of a cliff-hanger that will be resolved in the final book, Scoundrel Ever After (due out this fall), but there was enough of a resolution in this one to feel satisfying.  I’m definitely hooked enough to want to read the next one too … and get my hands on the previous four stories as soon as possible!

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