I'm going to say this right now and up front: I was a historical romance virgin and this book popped that cherry.
My Scandalous Viscount - Gaelen Foley
Meet the courageous men of the Inferno Club as they face their greatest challenge yet: marriage! Sebastian, Viscount Beauchamp, lives by a code of honor, and now honor dictates he must marry Miss Carissa Portland. He has no regrets over stealing a kiss from the adorable little busybody-a fitting punishment for putting her delectable nose where it didn’t belong. But now, caught in a compromising situation, he knows he must make her his bride. He’s faced danger before-but nothing like this! Carissa is not a gossip-she’s a “lady of information.” And all she was trying to do was warn the rakehell Beauchamp away from an irate husband. But even she can’t flaunt Society, and while her head tells her that Beau’s a notorious scoundrel, her heart-and her body-are captivated by his dangerous charm. But when Carissa next goes snooping, the secrets she uncovers about the Inferno Club may prove even more hazardous than falling in love with her own husband.
I now understand why historical romance is equally loved and hated. Of the people I know who are fans of romance novel most of them fall under historical romance or contemporary romance, both of which are very different. Historical romance is all very old fashioned (obviously) and the women often don't have a choice on who they marry but learn to love the man and happy every after. In contemporary romance, you have women holding out for their dream man and lordy here he comes with all of his issues and she saves the day and steals his heart and happy ever after.
I'm more of a contemporary/slut-it-up kind of gal but you know I'll try anything once. Usually.
Which is why I totally signed up for this tour. It was everything you think of when you think back to the romance novel book clubs our moms or grandma's were signed up for and you see these books come in the mail and it's the damsel in distress and maybe if you were lucky you'd see a bad word you shouldn't be reading. (Stop laughing because you know I'm not the only one guilty of this.)
I wanted to hate this book. I really did. I'll be upfront with this. I went in thinking I was going to hate it and would barely be able to finish it. But then I started reading and discovered I really liked Beau and dammit... I got hooked. I finished that book in an afternoon and totally loved it. So much so that I'm ordering the other ones in the series because now I want to know what happens with the other men featured in the book.
Carissa really is everything I hate in women. She thinks she knows it all, she has very little insight, and she's a gossip. She doesn't think about her actions or the consequences which make her a nuisance. Then you have Beau, completely embroiled in a political scandal and then he's dealing with Carissa, who he had to marry because she heard too much.
Overall this book wasn't a quick read and at some points I was annoyed with Carissa enough to want to give up. But I stuck with it because I wanted to figure out what the scandal was all about and then see if Beau and Carissa would end up happy. And you know what else? As I was reading it, it felt very Sherlock Holmes to me. Not the books per say, but the movies. As I was reading this, I'm picturing a Sherlock Holmes cast of characters and not going to lie, that probably sealed the deal for me because it made it more fun to picture it in my head as I was reading.
Please check out Gaelen's website HERE and her Facebook page HERE.