Title: The Rogue’s Wager
Author: Christi Caldwell
Published: 25 October 2016
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Lord Robert Dennington, the Marquess of Westfield, has long reveled in the freedom afforded him as the ducal heir. He knows he must someday do right by the Somerset line, but he’s in no hurry to give up his carefree existence.
Helena Banbury is a bookkeeper in a gentleman’s gambling club, adept at analyzing numbers and accounts but helpless for lack of influence. She’s never belonged among the nobility on the gaming hell floors, but neither does she feel completely herself among the men who run the Hell and Sin Club, despite the fact that they are family. The once-illiterate girl from the streets wants more than the gilded walls her protective cage can offer.
When Robert mistakenly enters her chambers one night, Helena is forced out of her predictable life and thrust into the glittering world of Society. Will the charms of the marquess prove more perilous than any danger she ever knew on the streets?
The book starts off with Lord Robert Dennington being summoned by his grandfather, Duke of Somerset and with that unfortunate meeting; Roberts’s view of life and women in general was forever changed. I read the prologue and all I can think is the grandfather is one cold son of a bitch and how he chose to show that Robert was wrong was just brutal exceptionally brutal. Honestly, I would be surprised if Robert came out of the meeting unscathed. Anyhoots, with this unfortunate meeting Robert starts to lead what I call the YOLO/Satan lifestyle where he just couldn’t give a damn about anything and enjoys his life to the fullest and thus years down the road it is exactly this behavior that enables him to meet Helena and the rest is history so they say.
With this book, I liked how Helena is anything but the typical beauty you always see in historical romance. For one, she is crazily tall and her height is 6 feet (for an asian who is only 5’3, I consider anything more than 5’5 is crazily tall), she is lean, barely has any hips but her most distinguishing features are the scars all over her face and her body. Plus part of her face that does not have any scars is average looking yet Robert still fell in love with her. Robert who is just born gorgeous fell in love with Helena because of her wit and personality. This makes me have hope for my own love life to be quite frank.
Aside from being the non-typical beauty, I also enjoyed Helena’s characterization in the book. She is both exposed to the harsh realities of life yet also sheltered that it makes Helena seem very childlike in one scene yet in another she is this bad ass of a woman attacking Robert with a knife. How Christi writes Helena’s character was well enough that it does not look fake and overworked.
Whilst the majority of the plot followed the typical historical romance template, towards the end when the true antagonist was revealed I was shocked because I had not anticipated said character to be so heartless and so evil as to do what they did. I thought the antagonist would just be the one and that was it, I never expected there to be a mastermind behind what Helena and Ryker went through.
The reason why I didn’t give this book a 5 rating eventhough I enjoyed it immensely was because:
- I rarely discuss book covers in my review because I find it irrelevant unless I actually bought it but the books cover for this book, I just have to put my two cents in. The models look so stiff and uncomfortable it comes across as extremely fake and the guys hair. Just a no go. That color of blonde does not suit him. He looks like a Ken doll and in all honesty I almost didn’t read this book because I had judged it by the cover.
- I wanted to know more on why the antagonist did what they did. What was their background story? I am not too sure if this will be discussed or revealed more in her upcoming books (I hope so) but for now I am left unsatisfied.
Overall, this book is awesome for a light and fun read. I am so excited for the next installment in ‘The Sinful Brides’ series because the hero in the next book is none other than Ryker!!! I am now silently praying please God, please let Netgalley have it soon.
*A copy of this book was kindly provided to me by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review