The Scandalous Flirt by Olivia Drake
Publisher & Release: St. Martin’s, October 31, 2017
Time and setting: Regency period, London
Genre: Historical Romance/Regency
Book Length: 349 pages
Heat Level: 1 Flame
Rating: 3.5 Gold Crowns
Scandal begins with just one kiss...
Aurora Paxton was once the belle of the ball, the most sought-after debutante of the season—until a scandalous mistake ruined her. Shunned by her family, Rory was banished to the country to live in disgrace. Now she’s been summoned back to London by her stepmother, who is being blackmailed by the least likely person Rory can imagine: Lucas Vale, Marquess of Dashell.
Lucas is someone Rory’s known for years—a man as devastatingly handsome as he is coldly disapproving of her. What in the world could he want from her or her family? Rory intends to find out as soon as she comes face to face with her old foe. What she never expects, however, is that the icy aristocrat has a soft spot for her—and a secret plan to redeem her status. Could it be that Lucas has been in love with Rory all along. . .and has finally found a way to win her heart?
Add to Goodreads:
It’s been some time since I have read a book by this author. This is book 6 of the Cinderella Sisterhood series. This is easily a standalone story. Thanks go to the publisher and Net-Galley for an advance copy of The Scandalous Flirt.
While the pacing is good, I struggled with it. The plot is a bit weak and heavy on mystery and weak on romance. For most of the book, they detest each other and only tolerate being together because they are trying to solve the mystery of who is blackmailing Aurora’s silly step-mother.
Aurora’s character did not come across as a flirt at all to me. I guess the title reflected the scandal she was involved in during her first season. While Aurora doesn’t like her step-mother, she loves her half-sister and doesn’t want her touched by scandalous as it had her in her first season. That is an admirable goal, but other than that, I did not care for her character very much.
Lucas is not a hero I could love or even like. He is rude to Aurora, and it makes no sense that he was in love with her eight years before. If that was the case, why did he forget about her? I found his character very disappointing. All through the book, he is pursuing an heiress so he can save his estate from ruin, not an admirable aspect of his character.
The romance is practically non-existent. At 60% into the book, I was still waiting for the first kiss! At that point, I expected this to follow along with the pattern of older, traditional regencies with the kiss being the climax to the love story. Imagine my surprise when they end up in bed toward the end of the book. For me, there was no chemistry between this duo.
Now, the mystery aspect of the story. While did keep the pacing going, it was a bit predictable to me. There were a few surprises along the way, but not enough to support the book.
The most enjoyable part of this tale is the friendship between Rory’s aunt and Lucas’s mother. They added a delightful touch to this story. The banter between these two ladies is enchanting and lively.
Nonetheless, The Scandalous Flirt is well-written, so I was able to give it 3.5 stars. If you’re looking for a mystery with a splash of romance, then this book may appeal to you more than it did for me. Happy reading!