Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Too Wicked to Wed by Cara Elliott



This is the first book in a new series for Cara Elliott -- her previous series, The Circle of Sin, was an amazing read about a group of unique women.

Now, Elliott is turning her attention to men -- the Lords of Midnight (all of them nicknamed after a type of hound -- Wolfhound, Deerhound, etc.)

The first book is about the Irish Wolfhound, Connor, is an earl who happens to run a brothel/hell to augment his income -- he suffers several setbacks:
1. A clever card player has "broken the bank" which
2. forces Connor to borrow money from his friend, the Marquess of Haddan and did the gentlemanly thing of putting up half of the brothel/hell as collateral.
3. The Marquess loses the note to Alexa in a game of cards where Alexa is disguised.

Alexa is a thorn on Connor's side -- they met months before when Alexa was looking for her brother, Sebastian.

Now, she holds half of his business in her hands and she has no plans of giving it back to him.

Connor and Alexa are wonderfully quirky -- she's an odd duck who never learned how to sew and paint like a proper lady and is widely well-versed in animal husbandry and farming. He's an Earl who dabbles in the worst sort of trade.

But, together, they make sense.

I especially love the interlude, where Alexa and Connor are at Linsley Close, while Connor is recuperating from a gunshot wound --

You can see Alexa shine -- she is in her element in that surrounding -- rustic, quiet, charming. (In a ballroom, she feels uncomfortable and uneasy.)

Connor never planned to return to Linsley Close -- the place filled with unwanted memories of his unhappy family life. But, with Alexa there, he begins to see the place ... and her in a new light.

I didn't enjoy the (forced) use of animal metaphor in the story -- I felt it weakened the story and the writing by making it trite. (Too much growling and howling.)

The next book is about the Deerhound, Griffin, Marquess of Haddan -- I hope Elliott manages to edit the book more slowly and do away with the metaphors.

(But I am definitely picking up a copy!)

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