The Rogue Not Taken (Scandal and Scoundrel #1)
By: Sarah MacLean
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase
Lady Sophie’s Society Splash!
When Sophie, the least interesting of the Talbot sisters, lands her philandering brother-in-law backside-first in a goldfish pond in front of all society, she becomes the target of very public aristocratic scorn. Her only choice is to flee London, vowing to start a new life far from the aristocacy. Unfortunately, the carriage in which she stows away isn’t saving her from ruin . . . it’s filled with it.
Rogue’s Reign of Ravishment!
Kingscote, “King,” the Marquess of Eversley, has never met a woman he couldn’t charm, resulting in a reputation far worse than the truth, a general sense that he’s more pretty face than proper gentleman, and an irate summons home to the Scottish border. When King discovers stowaway Sophie, however, the journey becomes anything but boring.
War? Or More?
He thinks she’s trying to trick him into marriage. She wouldn’t have him if he were the last man on earth. But carriages bring close quarters, dark secrets, and unbearable temptation, making opposites altogether too attractive . . . .
Okay, so readers of my historical romance book reviews know that I adored Sarah MacLean’s Love By Numbers trilogy (see author tag). Whilst her other book series didn’t really appeal to me, I ended up picking up this book because the premise sounded interesting–especially how she lands her brother-in-law in a pond in front of society–and I was looking for a fun read to balance out my to-read pile a bit.
I think the following reaction I had about this book had to do with just not in the mood entirely to read this book and being in something of a weird reading slump but my overall reaction to this book was that it was okay. I had fun with some of the banter between Sophie and “King” and I felt empathy for some of their own personal turmoils (and Sophie’s dream to own her own bookshop) but I didn’t quite feel for the characters per se; something felt missing whilst reading the book that gave that extra spark that connects me to the characters I read. And I dunno, the angst between them seemed to drag out for ages with the yes/no/we don’t like each other/but we do, and I get it but it got wearying after a while (maybe it’s my young-old age creeping in; ain’t nobody got time for that, lmao).
It also felt like a lot of story elements were crammed into this novel. Father-son problems, business-to-aristocracy class divide, on the road with highwaymen and pursuers at every turn, a fake engagement for the perfect revenge, etc, etc. Some of course made sense, other elements sort of sprung up like a last-minute plot point which in retrospect I suppose made sense given that the characters were just making hasty decisions at each and every turn but it felt a bit too much.
So yeah, I did enjoy The Rogue Not Taken for what it was but there was just a lot going on for me to really enjoy it. Again I think my reading mood/slump played a role in my feelings for it but I don’t think I’ll be continuing this series and just re-visit her Love by Numbers trilogy at some point instead 😀