To Sin With a Scoundrel
Author: Cara Elliott
Publisher: Grand Central
Pub. Date: February 23, 2010
Retail Price: $6.99
A reclusive widow known for her scientific scholarship, Lady Ciara Sheffield is shadowed by rumors that she poisoned her husband . . .
A rakehell rogue notorious for his devil-may-care antics, Lucas Bingham–the Earl of Hadley–is not accused of murdering anything–save for the rules of Polite Society. The only thing they have in common is seeing their names featured in the lurid gossip columns of London’s newspapers. Until an ancient manuscript draws them together.
Ciara needs a titled fiancé to quell the slanderous speculations which may send her to the gallows. Lucas needs a brilliant scholar to help his elderly uncle decipher the secrets of the mysterious manuscript. So when her friends urge her to accept the earl’s proposal of a temporary alliance, Ciara decides that she has no choice but to make a deal with the Devil. And so begins a seductive dance of sinful pleasures and hidden desires as the two of them waltz through the mansions of Mayfair.
What happens when a handsome carefree rogue meets a feisty, brilliant scientist? They each gain an ally, but lose their hearts!
To Sin with a Scoundrel is the first in the Circle of Sin Series by Cara Elliott. This series revolves around the romantic escapades of three brilliant and independent women. In the first novel, we are introduced to Lady Ciara Sheffield who has a passion for only two things: science and her young son.
She has been gracing the pages of London’s premier tabloid thanks to her deceased husband’s awful family who insists on blaming her [publicly[ for his death. They know that her son has inherited her family’s fortune and they will stop at nothing to get their hands on it. She has made every attempt to take it all in stride, but should their slanderous accusations continue, it can land her in the gallows.
Lucas, Earl of Hadley, who is better known as “Mad, Bad, Had-ley” because of his outrageous antics and flip-skirt behavior, has been sharing the limelight with Ciara. He is sly, sarcastic and doesn’t care what others think of him or his lifestyle.
Ciara and Lucas both need something from each other: Ciara needs a titled fiancé to help squash the terrible rumors once and for all and Lucas needs to have a mysterious manuscript deciphered for his uncle and only Ciara has the know-how. In an effort for them to both get what they want, they agree to alliance that lead them to lose their hearts.
I had a very hard time putting this book down! Cara gave us delightful characters and witty, clever dialogue. Not to mention that the body language of each character spoke volumes; from their initial reluctance, to their quickly developing weakness for one another. I loved the banter between Ciara and Lucas. They are intelligent and funny and their conversations are a great diversion to the sizzling heat between them. He pretends he is attracted to her body when her mind turns him on more than he ever expected, while Ciara is put-off by his notorious reputation, but is surprised to find a much more sensitive man hidden underneath. In addition, Cara Elliott has a knack for describing the setting without overdoing it allowing the reader to be transported to another time and place.
If all this isn’t enough, we’ve got a little side action going on with the mystery of who broke into Ciara’s home to ransack her laboratory and who would want to kidnap her son. The secondary characters are equally intriguing and I’m looking forward to their stories in the following books coming in June 2010 and March 2011.
If you liked Meredith Duran’s Bound by Your Touch, then you’ll like To Sin with a Scoundrel!
Rating: 9 (Excellent)
Heat Level: 3 (Sensual)