Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Do You Want to Start a Scandal? By Tessa Dare

Scandal started out extremely well. I enjoyed the hero and heroine. They accidentally find themselves caught in the library, alone, when another couple engages in a tryst during a ball. Of course our heroes find themselves caught instead of the couple that actually did the dirty.

Dare is a fun and energetic writer. This romance novel was not a high-angst emotion fest. It was a cute, sexy novel about two attractive regency characters. What I love about romance novels is how light and fun they can be. In fact, I took a break from an indepth biography of Donald Trump to read this book. It was exactly the breath of fresh air I needed.

The other thing that really sold me on Tessa Dare was the emoji joke. There is a scene, early in the book so this isn't really a spoiler, where the heroine's mother is explaining to her the mechanics of sex. Her mother uses piece of fruit to illustrate the act, choosing a peach and an eggplant. Of course those are now the internationally recognized symbols for the vagina and penis in emoji sex speak. I found that extended gag to be particularly delicious.

I found the hero to be a bit dull. He is supposed to be a spy working for the Crown, but he can't figure out what is going on in the castle? I guess he was blinded by love, but I found him to be a bit lacking. It was a bit more frustrating because I felt that Dare was telling us how brilliant and amazing he was, but not showing it to us.

The other problem is an issue I've been having more and more with romance novels. The romance goes from 0 to marriage in a week, sometimes less. I guess I can use my suspension of disbelief to believe that by the end of a two week stay somewhere that the hero and heroine have fallen in love. But I found it particularly egregious here. They are caught in their faux-tryst, he instantly says that he will marry her. Noble, but she demurs as she wants to marry for love. Then as they fall in love this becomes, I guess almost ret-conned, to be that he always wanted to marry her for love. But he'd just met her! I guess the part of the romance I love is how these two characters will get together. I mean we know they end up married in the end, but it's how they get there that is exciting. I guess I just didn't believe how they got there.

Overall still solid. 3 out of 5 eggplants.