Taming a Wicked Rake (Taming the Duke's Heart Book 9)
Tammy Andresen, author
A wicked rake and a ruined lady… Lady Madeline Maddox has a secret. Actually, Maddie has several. The worst one isn’t that she accidentally kissed a known rake, Lord Adam Ridgely, in the garden at the Everston’s Ball. Nor is it that the editor of the London Standard published her scandal for all of London. Her greatest error was sending a series of letters to that same publisher detailing her deepest desires for social change. Even though she sent essays under a nom de plume, they have the power to bring real harm, not just to herself, but to her family as well. But how can she protect herself and them as a ruined woman? And why can’t she stay away from the rake who ruined her? Lord Ridgely will only make her problems worse, won’t he? The Earl of Ridgely learned long ago to keep his dalliances short and sweet. He has no use for emotional attachments, they only provide unnecessary complication. But when there is a case of mistaken identity in the garden and he inadvertently ruins a respectable lady, Adam has no choice but to offer marriage to Maddie. Except that the duke’s daughter grows more and more interesting with each passing day and her past… well it’s not so innocent. In fact, the lady needs his help. The question is, can he give her what she requires without losing his heart?
Andresen’s lively ninth Taming a Duke’s Heart Regency (after Taming a Defiant Duke) unites an independent woman and a reputed womanizer in an unexpected marriage. When Lady Madeline Maddox sends her essays on the plight of women to Charles Delaney, editor of the London Standard, his warm response leads Maddie to believe he values her opinions, not just her social standing and reputation as a beauty. The two strike up a correspondence and she agrees to meet him in person in a rose garden during a society ball, but she encounters rakish Lord Adam Kingsley instead. Maddie mistakes Adam for Charles and they share a blistering kiss, which Charles witnesses. Feeling rebuffed, Charles exposes Maddie’s transgression, hoping to ruin her. To save Maddie’s reputation, Adam proposes marriage. The only catch is that Adam claims he will never be able to love her, having witnessed his parents’ horrible marriage. But as the simmering attraction between them gives way to mutual respect, he may have to go back on his word. Though the instant passion and convenient relationship between Adam and Maddie seem somewhat rushed, the steady growth of their feelings is convincing. The strong leads will appeal to fans of historical romance. (Self-published)