All the Ways to Ruin a RogueSeries: The Debutante Files #2
by Sophie Jordan
Published by Avon, HarperCollins on July 28th 2015
Genres: Historical, Romance
I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
There was once a lady who loathed a lord...
Lady Aurelia hasn't always hated Max, Viscount Camden, her brother's best friend. In fact, as a besotted girl, she thrived under his kind attention – sure that he was the most noble and handsome man in the land. Until her young heart discovered what manner of rogue he really was. Now, though she enjoys nothing more than getting on his last nerve, she can’t deny Max drives her to distraction—even if she tries to pretend otherwise.
...and a lord who was confounded by a lady.
Max cannot recall a time when Aurelia did not vex him. If she was not his friend’s sister, he would stay far away from the infuriating vixen. Unfortunately, they are always thrown together. At parties and family gatherings…she is always there. Infuriating him, tossing punch in his face, driving him mad...until one night, she goes too far and he retaliates in the only way he can: with a kiss that changes everything.
Historical romances and I have a tenuous relationship. For a long time I resisted getting wrapped up in this genre of books. There are just so many historical romances and with me just dipping my feet into romance within the last two years, I’d be opening myself up to even more books to read. I’m already fairly well buried under a pile of contemporary and young adult romance.
So I’ve waited… I’ve sat on the sidelines and picked a few historical romances to add to my TBR. Then I finally took the leap and actually read one earlier this year. FAILURE. I really didn’t enjoy it. I thought I was doomed, doomed, doomed…
Last month, I saw Sophie Jordan had a new historical releasing soon. I loved Sophie Jordan’s new adult books, but she’s actually KNOWN for her historicals. Perhaps I should try again…
…. and then I stayed up until 3:40am to finish reading this book, in one sitting!
What really appealed to me about this story (and kept me up all night) was the depth of character Ms. Jordan wrote for both protagonists of this banter-filled, love-wins-in-the-end romance.
In the prologue, we’re introduced to Aurelia as a fifteen year old as she’s getting ready for her first garden party with the “grown-ups”. She’s also excitedly anticipating seeing her brother’s best friend, Max. She’s grown up with him but hasn’t seen him for some time. Max has always looked out for Aurelia and has actually become a friend to her. Unfortunately, Aurelia’s opinion of Max is shattered when she catches him in a compromising position with the help. Aurelia then “accidentally” gets her revenge on Max (yes, it’s possible to accidentally to do that).
As the story jumps ahead many years, we witness Aurelia’s struggle to be the woman she wants to be within the confines of society. As the story progresses, I could see her grow and mature right before my eyes. I saw where she had to live with her past “mistakes”, even though to her, they weren’t mistakes at all. She just wanted to live her life to the fullest. And Ms. Jordan illustrated that beautifully with this incredibly well written character.
Max was another great character because even though he infuriates the reader, that’s exactly what the character of Max is supposed to do – he’s a rogue and makes no apologies about it. I will warn you, he behaves poorly throughout most of the book but he has his reasons! Again, it takes a skilled author to show you that. I wouldn’t love this book if there wasn’t a HEA so of course, Max eventually comes around 😉
Literally a page turner, the plot was tight and the pacing was quick. You went from one clash between Max and Aurelia to the next. You witnessed Aurelia’s growth while at the same time watching Max’s gradual surrender of his heart.
Sophie Jordan will be THE historical romance author I read.