Official book description:
He has devil’s blood in his veins. At least, that’s always been the legend. How else could the Duke of Brexford’s notorious bastard son return from the dead? The brutal decade since Lucien Durand, Lord Bolt, allegedly drowned in the Thames forged him into a man who always gets what—and who—he wants. And what he wants is vengeance for his stolen birthright…and one wild night in Angelique Breedlove’s bed.
Angelique recognizes heartbreak when the enigmatic Lord Bolt walks into The Grand Palace on the Thames, and not even his devastating charm can tempt her to risk her own ever again. One scorching kiss drives home the danger.
But in the space between them springs a trust that feels anything but safe. And the passion—explosive, consuming—drives Lucien to his knees. Now his whole life depends on proving his love to a woman who doesn’t believe in it…because his true birthright, he now knows, is guardian of Angelique Breedlove’s heart.
This is the second book in Julie Anne Long’s return to historical romances, her The Palace of Rogues series. While this book works perfectly fine on its own, it follows on pretty much directly from the first, Lady Derring Takes a Lover, which is also very worth reading. In a year when there really haven’t been many romances that impressed me much, the fact that Long has written two is both remarkable and encouraging.
While Angelique Breedlove was quite the fallen woman before she entered into a partnership with the widow of her recently deceased lover, at the start of this book, she has a home, a business she’s proud of, friends and a lovely found family. Delilah, the former Lady Derring, who should probably have hated her for being her husband’s mistress, is instead her best friend and staunchest supporter. Captain Tristan Hardy, the naval hero who swept Delilah off her feet in the previous book, is a trusted friend. The ladies’ boarding house, the Palace on the Thames seems to be doing well enough that the ladies are even thinking of expanding, hoping to buy the property next door.
Full review here.