ROMANCE

Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover

Avon. (Rule of Scoundrels, Bk. 4). Dec. 2014. 384p. ISBN 9780062068514. pap. $7.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062065414. HISTORICAL ROMANCE
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OrangeReviewStarRuined as a girl and tarred by the resulting scandal, nobly born unwed mother Lady Georgiana Pearson will do anything to assure her young daughter's happiness—even if it takes returning to society after ten years and marrying for status, not love. But Georgiana is more than she appears to be. Behind the elegant exterior lives a clever, determined woman who's carved out a secret, dangerous life—a life that gives her enormous power over the ton but could crumble if the truth was ever revealed. When ruthless, perceptive newspaper owner Duncan West enters her sphere, things take a far more dicey and ultimately passionate turn. Sharp wit, flashes of humor, long-simmering fury, and a wealth of well-drawn characters add depth to this superbly rendered tale that deftly addresses social, class, and women's issues while delivering a stunning romance.
VERDICT Brilliant, seductive, and intensely engaging, this addictive story pairs powerful, driven protagonists with a seemingly unsolvable dilemma in an ingenious, wonderfully satisfying conclusion to MacLean's remarkable quartet. Although this book is complete in itself, fans will be well rewarded by reading the entire series in order. MacLean (No Good Duke Goes Unpunished) lives in New York City. [An LJ 2014 Best Romance; see p. 30.]

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