Scandal of the Year by Laura Lee Guhrke

Title: Scandal of the Yeart (Abandoned at the Altar #2)

Author: Laura Lee Guhrke

Redonk Nutshell: Fling-mates cool then burn

Official Synopsis: One tryst was all she wanted…From their very first meeting, Julia knew that Aidan Carr, the oh-so-proper Duke of Trathen, had a bit of the devil in him, a devil who secretly yearned for what he could not have, a devil who harbored a desire for her. So when she needed to be caught in a compromising situation, Aidan was the answer to her prayers.  One tryst just wasn’t enough…Aidan is supposed to be looking for a bride, yet his scandalous liaison with Julia is all he can think about. Hot, erotic memories of kissing her skin, falling into her bed, pulling her naked body on top of his own continue to torment and tempt him. What is it about this brazen seductress that he finds so hard to resist? And how can he stop himself from falling into her bed a second time?

Notice how this book wasn’t included in my upcoming books post from a few days ago?  Yeaaaahh…NO self control.  Hey, that just means more crap for me to ramble on about here, right?  *rationalizes manic desire to buy books*
I like our main chica, Lady Julia Yardley.  She’s a tough cookie.  She smokes, she drives, she swears like a sailor, and she puts on an incredibly convincing facade that she doesn’t give a fart about what people think of her.  And she needs to because her divorce from her depraved husband had finally been granted, but at the expense of her sort-of childhood friend, Aidan Carr, the Duke of Trathen.  She arranged a tryst, more or less forcing her ex’s hand at putting through a divorce.
Aiden isn’t too bad either.  It’s nice reading a historical romance that isn’t about a rake.  He’s no saint, but he’s definitely committed to his “higher” morals.  He’s kind, yet stern and awfully patient.  He sets out to find a wife so he can beget an heir, and when he continually finds himself drawn back to Julie he decides to damn it all and go after her.
Overall, Scandal is a fun, sweet read.  Guhrke spends a good deal of time fleshing out Julie and Aiden’s back story, and you come to understand more of why they are each how they are.  She bounces back and forth between the present and the past, but not enough to throw off the flow of the novel.   I enjoyed the early 20th century setting, having mostly read novels set in an earlier time period.
I had a few “meh” moments with Scandal.  First, Aiden spends a good amount of time trying to convince himself to resist Julie, and that she is, at heart, just not the right one for her.  So when he suddenly changes his tune and decides to all out pursue her I kind of had a hard time believing it.  I wasn’t convinced of whatever had ultimately changed his mind.  Julie, on the other hand…her side of the story was much more believable for me.  She has some serious emotional baggage that she has to work through, and her hesitation at allowing her true feelings for Aiden to show is truly fascinating to watch play out.
The second “meh” was the ending.  It felt rushed.  When Aiden confronts Julie with his ultimatum (one that really wasn’t all that far fetched for me, though somewhat poorly timed), Julie goes from one extreme to another in a matter of hours.  I expected this part of their story to play out a bit more, especially given their history.  But..no.  Instead, we get our happy ending in a few pages.  It was almost…anticlimactic.
What I loved about this book: Julie.  She’s bad ass.
What I didn’t like: I felt sort of shafted (and NOT in a good way heh heh) by the ending
Rating: C+

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