If You Give a Rake a Ruby
March 5, 2013
Her Mysterious Past is the Best Revenge…
Fallon, the Marchioness of Mystery, is a celebrated courtesan with her finger on the pulse of high society. She’s adored by men, hated by their wives. No one knows anything about her past, and she plans to keep it that way.
Only He Can Offer Her a Dazzling Future…Warrick Fitzhugh will do anything to protect his compatriots in the Foreign Office, including seduce Fallon, who he thinks can lead him to the deadliest crime lord in London. He knows he’s putting his life on the line…
To Warrick’s shock, Fallon is not who he thinks she is, and the secrets she’s keeping are exactly what makes her his heart’s desire…
Ms. Galen is quickly becoming an “auto buy” when I see her books available (having started on her Brothers of the Revolution – Making of a Gentlemen, etc. – series). If You Give a Rake a Ruby only further cements her place in my top authors list.
Ruby follows the Diamond book by only a matter of a couple of months (at most), starting just after the wedding of Juliette. Like Juliette, Fallon is one of the Three Jewels of the Ton as named by Prinny, the Marchioness of Mystery. The growing mystery over why Lucifer and his minion Gabriel were after the Diamonds in the Rough (spies, which include Warrick) does just that, keep on growing. We learn who dispatched Lucifer, and a great deal about Fallon’s past.
My favorite thing about this book was definitely Fallon. Unlike so many of the Regency heroines (by their very nature), Fallon is not a shrinking violet and if push comes to shove (and it does, multiple times over the course of If You Give a Rake), she can fight back and fight back viciously, thanks to her less-than-pure upbringing. She is fiercely loyal and, like Juliette from Diamond, her place as a courtesan is a matter of illusion, fostered by the Earl and Countess Sinclair.
Warrick is a younger son who chose the army and spying as to becoming a vicar, and he’s quite good as a spy. Unfortunately, he was present at some horrific battles and witnessed deaths that haunt him (he has PTSD, though obviously it isn’t called that).
One of the most touching scenes, and in fact what moved my rating of this book from a 4.5 to a solid 5, was at the end when Fallon helps Warrick through a very traumatic moment when he flashes mentally back to the battlefield and loses himself once again. I nearly cried at how touching it was, and the secondary characters (Warrick’s parents) just added to it when they added their bit in (deliberately leaving out further explanation because I have no desire to spoil this incredible scene).
This book left me champing at the bit to get to the third Jewel’s story, that of Lily. Clearly there is more to the final Diamond than meets the eye. She and Warrick know one another, and there are a great many implications left as to why they know each other.
I can’t WAIT for Ms. Galen’s next book, whether it’s one of the Diamond books or something else entirely.
Provided by NetGalley for an honest review.