Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Adult Series Review: The Rules of Scoundrels by Sarah MacLean

I've decided to change things up with my reviews! When I read a few books in a series or trilogy together, I'll make a series review! I will NOT to adding the descriptions but the links will go to each books GoodReads page! 
I've never read a Sarah MacLean book in my life so when I had the opportunity to grab these three books from my library, I took the chance. Racquel and Sharon of The Book Barbies are huge fans of Sarah MacLean and on their recommendation, I picked up the books! While I didn't love every book, I have to say, I am wholly invested in this series and the three scoundrels of these novels have each taken a part of my heart. Admittedly, Cross is my favorite, but I liked the others none the less. Now I really, really want the fourth and final book since it's Chase's book! 

Title: A Rogue by Any Other Name (The Rules of Scoundrels #1) by Sarah MacLean
Source: Library
Review: I was warned that not everyone loved this book. For one, Racquel didn't like this book and neither did Keertana but I'm that person who has to read the books in order if I am able to do so. A Rogue by Any Other Name is the story of Lady Penelope Marbury, a woman who is not interested in a quite marriage  and Marquess of Bourne, once an aristocrat, now cast away from society. Honestly, I was on my way to liking Penelope's and Bourne's story but then the plot of this novel just made me...not angry, but disappointed. The thing is, I expected the slow burn romance, the banter and jealousy to come before the sexytimes but instead, the plot worked the other way around. I just could not put my mind around it. The early events of this novel left me not caring much for whatever else would happen but I continued anyways. The book got a little better as it went on and Penelope and Bourne's love blossomed but I was just never as invested in it. 

I actually liked Bourne much more than Penelope to be honest. Penelope, and I understand the time period and all, was annoying. So, so annoying that I wanted to slap some sense into her. She'd been hurt by love and I got that but I wish she had the courage to just shake herself out of it. After all, the events had happened years and years ago. Bourne, cast away from society for doing something foolish when he was young, was the tall, dark, stranger type and I loved it. He was rough around the edges by his and Penelope's past always seemed to get in the way. 

Overall, this book was a miss for me. While I ended up caring for the characters in the end, I wasn't in love with them. Nor did I, to be honest, care too much about how they overcame their obstacles. Sarah MacLean can write, though, there's no doubt in my mind but sometimes, the writing isn't enough to garner a favorite book. 
Title: One Good Earl Deserves a Lover (The Rules of Scoundrels #2) by Sarah MacLean
Source: Library
Review: This is by far my favorite Sarah MacLean book yet (I've only read three) and I only wished all of her books were as good as this one. Quirky and funny and sexy and romantic, One Good Earl Deserves a Lover tells the story of Phillipa Marbury, the daughter of an duke and Cross, an owner of the most prosperous gambling hell in London.

Phillip Marbury is by far my favorite heroine of this series. She was funny and adorable and awkward and well, nerdy. She come's to Cross for help in a scientific experiment and their banter was perfection. Pippa is naive in the best sense of the word because it works for her and it makes sense in the historical context. Not only that but Pippa would rather read a book than attend a ball or an extravagant party. All in all, Pippa was wonderful and I couldn't help by laugh at her thoughts and actions. Pippa and Cross definitely have a slow burn type of romance and I love, love, love this kind of romance. Plus, it was fun to see how Cross and Pippa brought out the best in each other and how their  love blossomed.

Cross is getting his own paragraph because Cross is amazing and adorable and sexy and brooding and just...yeah. I think thus far, I like Cross the best. I mean, he's really tough and can be scary (if he wants to be) which is huge given the fact that he's not as muscular as the other scoundrels. Yet he care for Pippa and has a soft side that he shows on more occasion than one. Like the other scoundrels, he made a mistake in his younger years that he's still trying to make up for.

Overall, One Good Earl Deserves a Lover is the best mix of funny, sexy, and romance around. Pippa is such a different character from what you'd expect, especially from that time period, and you can't help but love her. Cross and Pippa's banter will make you smile and laugh and the ending will make you very, very happy.
Title: No Good Duke Goes Unpunished (The Rules of Scoundrels #3) by Sarah MacLean
Source: Library
Review: I'm still unsure as to how I feel about this book. While I loved Mara and Temple, I wasn't as invested in their romance as quickly as I was with Phillipa and Cross. It's not to say that I didn't like this book but I'm a little disappointed. It kinda makes me sad that I didn't love this book as much as the second book because Mara and Temple both bring a different type of character in this book.

Mara Lowe has been in hiding for twelve years but when her brother gambles away all of his and her money, she has to come out of the hiding to get her money back. Of course, by now, Temple is one of the owners of The Angel where her brother lost all of the money. Temple also happens to be the man accused of killing Mara. Mara Lowe is very much different from the first two ladies of this series: unlike the ladies, Mara has to save herself from the assumptions of the public. People already think she's dead so revealing the truth can cause even more problems for her. But Mara has to do the right thing. For me, it's not to say that Mara was a bad character. She actually was written very, very well but I could not feel empathetic to her. After all, she came back after twelve years simply because the money that was hers was wrongfully spent. There is a good reason for her need for the money but I found it selfish. Attempting to give Mara a chance, I was unable to fully grasp her situation. In the end, the frustration at her actions was too large for me to ignore. So I didn't dislike Mara. I just didn't like her either.

Temple fared better than Mara and I will admit that one of the biggest reasons I liked this book as much as I did was because I cared for Temple. The poor guy did noting wrong but drink a little too much when he was young and was seduced by a young, beautiful woman. I'm not excusing his actions but his actions seemed so minimal to Mara's. I understand that she made a mistake but at the same time, I felt it was wrong for Temple to go down the way he did. I'm honestly not trying to bash oh Mara. I did feel for her after her situation was revealed but for some reason, I felt worse for Temple.

Overall, I liked this book a lot more than A Rogue By Any Other Name but not as much as One Good Earl Deserves a Lover. I should have liked No Good Duke Goes Unpunished a lot more than the other two: everything about it was my kind of novel but it just felt a little off. Maybe I should re-read it to see how I like it then but for now, I'm in the middle with this book. There is no doubt that Sarah MacLean knows what she's writing about and while I'm not the biggest fan, I do like her work. I honestly can't wait for the fourth book, especially after that cliffhanger (which sadly, I had an inkling about and I got it right.)

Cover Comments: 
I'm indifferent to the covers because they're very much like other romance novels around but I will admit: the dresses do come to play in each book so I appreciate that. 

**I borrowed this book from the library. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for my review.**

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