Thursday, November 3, 2022

BOOK REVIEW: Never Rescue a Rogue by Virginia Heath

 I received this book for free from Netgalley. That did not influence this review.

Never Rescue a Rogue by Virginia Heath is the second book in The Merriwell Sisters series. I haven’t read book one, but this novel stands well on its own. It’s set in 1826, so just after the Regency period, but it reads the same as a Regency Romance.

Miss Diana Merriwell is a commoner who works incognito as a gossip columnist and investigative reporter. She’s the middle daughter (of three) of a criminal, and her difficult upbringing has made her strong and independent. Her older sister recently married an earl, thrusting Diana into a new social circle. She adapts to it easily and is pleased that it affords her ready access to the subjects of her gossip column.

One of these subjects is Giles Sinclair, son of a duke. Giles has a very big problem. Four years earlier, he learned from the dying duchess that he is actually illegitimate. So he is not heir to the dukedom. This is terrible, because Giles has always wanted to eventually right the wrongs of his father. The current duke is a penny-pinching, cruel man who neglects his estates and tenants. Giles and his father have never gotten along because Giles is good to the core, even if he pretends to be a reprobate to irritate the duke.

Giles intends to one day set things to right in the dukedom, but knows that if his father’s secret comes out, the actual heir, his uncle, will inherit. And this man is even more morally bankrupt than Giles’ father. 

At the novel’s opening. Giles learns that something or someone is threatening to reveal the duke’s secret. Then, abruptly, Giles’ father dies and Giles inherits. He’s in a quandary. He’s a little afraid he’ll go to jail for impersonating a duke, but he’s mostly afraid of his uncle inheriting and causing more harm to innocents.

The only one he trusts to go to for help is Diana. The two have known each other for a while and they enjoy verbally sparring. They pretend to dislike each other, but deep down what they feel is attraction. However, Diana refuses to entertain the notion that she cares for Giles because her life lessons have taught her that men are not to be trusted. Giles recognizes that he’s attracted to Diana, but he refuses to woo and marry anyone since he knows he’s not the peer of the realm he must pretend to be.

The two embark on a quest to discover the truth and maybe break the law to continue hiding it, all for the greater good. On the way, they fall ever more deeply in love.

This is a quick, entertaining romance in the enemies-to-lovers trope, or maybe frenemies-to-lovers is a better description. The dialogue contains some jarring modernisms, and Diana’s journalistic fact-finding adventures are glaringly lacking in credibility, but it remains a fun love story with two likeable protagonists.

No comments:

Post a Comment