Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Lady Risks All-Stephanie Laurens

The Lady Risks All

Stephanie Laurens

Avon, Sep 25 2012, $7.99

ISBN: 9780062068637

Second son Lord Julian Delbraith is a popular wastrel who is excellent at gambling. His older brother George the heir to a dukedom is boring while his wife Caroline believes her brother-in-law is a bad influence. In 1811 George commits suicide. Shocked Julian returns home to learn his sibling had fallen to the family curse of gambling and owed a fortune. To save the family and the dukedom, Julian proposes to his solicitor a plan to pay the debt from his funds and become a full time gambling king. He tells his mother and Caroline with the stipulation the young duke Henry knows the truth so he can be watched in case he succumbs to the curse.

In 1823, Miranda Clifford follows her younger brother Roderick who visits notorious gambling king Neville Roscoe. The Cliffords are wealthy due to making a fortune in trade, but lack respectability. She explains to Roscoe that she came to rescue her sibling from wicked activities. He allows her to hide while listening to her brother during a meeting. She is stunned that Roderick belongs to the Philanthropy Guild who runs charity projects. Miranda realizes that Roscoe is not corrupting her sibling. She apologizes as he walks her home and tells him her brother no longer needs her to watch over him. When Roderick vanishes, they team up in search of him while falling in love, but his scandalous life leaves them no future together.

The lead couple is an interesting pairing as she learns the true heroism of her scandalous beloved. The suspense subplot is exciting, but the switch to a well written romance detracts from the overall entertaining storyline.

Harriet Klausner

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