The lively plot and vivid characters are as well-drawn as the sex, offering satisfaction on many levels.

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THE REBEL HEIR

A con artist falls for the well-behaved daughter of the man he’s trying to swindle, but who is the real imposter?

Ashley Claughbane is a spare heir. As the youngest son in a wealthy family, he must make his way in the world on his own, without an inheritance. There wasn’t much left for him to inherit anyway, as his father was left destitute by the time of his death. Determined to punish Lord Rightsworth, the man responsible for his family’s misfortune, Ashley trains himself to be a con artist, starting small by selling love potions and youth tonics. Now he’s ready for the swindle he’s been waiting for. Under the fake name of Lord Crosby, he heads to London and, with the help of a mysterious secret organization called the Spare Heirs Society, sets up a phony company selling portable steam. His first potential client is none other than Lord Rightsworth, but due to a previous encounter, Lord Rightsworth’s daughter, Evangeline Green, already knows Lord Crosby under a different name and figures out quickly that he’s a fraud. Trained mercilessly by her mother to be a proper debutante, Evangeline finds herself unable to resist this Lord Crosby, even with her family’s fortune and reputation at stake. As much as she tries to strictly adhere to the rules of proper society, Evangeline is a rebel at heart. Playing with the themes of deception and authenticity, this romance delightfully emulates a Jane Austen–ish comedy of manners. There is an easy chemistry between Ashley and Evangeline, with a great mixture of wit, gamesmanship, sexual innuendo, and warmth. It's a genuine pleasure to watch their masks fall away as they become friends and lovers.

The lively plot and vivid characters are as well-drawn as the sex, offering satisfaction on many levels.

Pub Date: Sept. 6, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-492-62136-2

Page Count: 448

Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca

Review Posted Online: June 21, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

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RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE

The much-loved royal romance genre gets a fun and refreshing update in McQuiston’s debut.

Alex Claremont-Diaz, son of the American President Ellen Claremont, knows one thing for sure: He hates Henry, the British prince to whom he is always compared. He lives for their verbal sparring matches, but when one of their fights at a royal wedding goes a bit too far, they end up falling into a wedding cake and making tabloid headlines. An international scandal could ruin Alex’s mother’s chances for re-election, so it’s time for damage control. The plan? Alex and Henry must pretend to be best friends, giving the tabloids pictures of their bromance and neutralizing the threat to Ellen's presidency. But after a few photo ops with Henry, Alex starts to realize that the passionate anger he feels toward him might be a cover for regular old passion. There are, naturally, a million roadblocks between their first kiss and their happily-ever-after—how can American political royalty and actual British royalty ever be together? How can they navigate being open about their sexualities (Alex is bisexual; Henry is gay) in their very public and very scrutinized roles? Alex and Henry must decide if they’ll risk their futures, their families, and their careers to take a chance on happiness. Although the story’s premise might be a fantasy—it takes place in a world in which a divorced-mom Texan Democrat won the 2016 election—the emotions are all real. The love affair between Alex and Henry is intense and romantic, made all the more so by the inclusion of their poetic emails that manage to be both funny and steamy. McQuiston’s strength is in dialogue; her characters speak in hilarious rapid-fire bursts with plenty of “likes,” “ums,” creative punctuation, and pop-culture references, sounding like smarter, funnier versions of real people. Although Alex and Henry’s relationship is the heart of the story, their friends and family members are all rich, well-drawn characters, and their respective worlds feel both realistic and larger-than-life.

A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

Pub Date: June 4, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-250-31677-6

Page Count: 432

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Review Posted Online: March 4, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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A promising start to a series, provided Roberts can flesh out her derivative heroine.

THE WITNESS

A young woman in hiding from the Russian mob faces a difficult decision when she falls in love with a cop.

Abigail, 28, lives alone in the bucolic hamlet of Bickford, Ark., in an isolated house, fortified with firearms, a state-of-the-art alarm system and a vicious dog named Bert. When the town’s genial police chief, Brooks, suspects Abigail is packing while shopping for gourmet groceries, his curiosity soon morphs into courtship. Although she finds herself drawn to Brooks and to his welcoming, bohemian family, Abigail dares not reveal that her real name is Liz—which is not the only way in which she appears to be Roberts’ answer to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Gifted with an eidetic memory, an IQ over 200 and an affinity for cool, calculated mayhem, Liz/Abigail is a skilled hacker and a highly paid security consultant. In her spare time she investigates the Russian mob and the crooked federal agents who are responsible for her current predicament; whenever possible, she throws virtual monkey wrenches into the mob’s Internet scams. When she witnesses an altercation between Brooks and the wastrel son of a local magnate, she’s thrust back into the horror of the last time she witnessed a crime. At 16, rebelling against an unloving, controlling mother, Liz and a girlfriend, Julie, visited a Chicago nightclub run by the Russian Mafia, where Ilya, son of gang kingpin Sergei, and Alexi, a cousin, seduced them with Cosmos. Later, at Alexi’s lakeside home, Liz was an unseen witness to a hit on Alexi by Sergei’s enforcers, who also killed Julie. Managing to escape, Liz was forced to run again when two dirty FBI agents destroyed her safe house and murdered her guards. A person of interest to both the Feds and the mob, she’s been on the lam for 12 years. Before they can marry, Brooks must help Liz come in from the cold.

A promising start to a series, provided Roberts can flesh out her derivative heroine.

Pub Date: April 17, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-399-15912-1

Page Count: 496

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: March 27, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2012

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