ROMANCE

The Rogue To Ruin

Avon. (Misadventures in Matchmaking, Bk. 3). Aug. 2019. 400p. ISBN 9780062685520. pap. $7.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062685537. HISTORICAL ROMANCE
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Ainsley Bourne is the last unwed sister in a family of matchmakers and the proprietor of the Bourne Matrimonial Agency, currently situated across the street from a gaming hell she believes is to blame for the business’s recent financial woes. Former boxer Reed Sterling, the establishment’s owner, may be devilishly handsome, but Ainsley finds him as unsavory as his clientele and concocts a plan to scare him off the premises. Yet just as she’s getting ready to accomplish her goal, her abusive ex-fiancé returns unexpectedly. To protect herself, Ainsley hastily claims she’s involved with her rival neighbor. Reed is secretly thrilled, as he’s already fallen for the hard-working Ainsley. Soon their pretend relationship is turning into something very real.
VERDICT This third and final book in the series (after Ten Kisses to Scandal) is filled with delicious, fiery dialog between Ainsley and Reed, making readers who enjoy smart and witty historicals such as Tessa Dare’s “Spindle Cove” series long for that first kiss and our enemies-to-lovers’ happily ever after. This makes up for some of the secondary characters and plot points that occasionally fall a bit flat comparatively, resulting in a satisfying conclusion to a clever and engaging series.

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