A Lady’s Secrets of Seduction: To become irresistible, you must be seemingly unattainable.

Redonk Nutshell: After suffering a heartbreaking reality check, a woman sets out to rake her childhood crush against the coals by publishing a “how to seduce your ideal man” manifesto for Ladies

I absolutely adored Vicky Dreiling’s debut book How to Marry A Duke.  It was hysterical and endearing with the perfect dash of sensuality.  I was really looking forward to reading her next book, A Lady’s Secret of Seduction.

This is Julianne’s story, Tristan from How to Marry a Duke ‘s younger sister.  She has been head over heals infatuated with Tristan’s best friend, Marc, the Earl of Hawkfield since she was a kid.  She has admired and dreamed of him from afar, naively putting off suitors in hopes that Hawk will make her his wife.  Hawk is completely ignorant of her attraction, mostly because Hawk himself is a consummate rake, and has committed to his lifestyle because of past indiscretions.  He’s deemed himself unworthy of certain…standards, for lack of a better word.  When Tristan asks Hawk to be her guardian while he is in the country with his very pregnant wife, Hawk reluctantly agrees, knowing he is the worst of all contenders to take on the role.

I went through a transition while reading this book, almost as much as the characters themselves.  I was disappointedly skeptical upon reading the first few chapters.  The plot seemed almost hopelessly predictable and, I cringe to say this, tedious.  But I held out because I had faith in Ms. Dreiling.  I’m glad I did, because once Julianne got over her naïve view of Hawk, the plot blossomed and matured.

Scoundrel grew on me, and in a good way.  I adored the way Julianne turned the tables on Hawk.  Her realistic reaction to heartbreak was relatable, and I admired her courage to committing to her friendship with her former paramour.  Predictably, watching Hawk transition from a rake to a man in love is a humorous arc.  Watching Julianne fall back in love with him, with all his faults, is very romantic.

All in all, I enjoyed How to Seduce a Scoundrel, though How to Marry a Duke still reigns supreme for me.  I look forward to the third installment, How to Ravish a Rake, featuring Hawk’s mischievous brother and our favorite wallflower, Amy.

How to Seduce a Scoundrel by Vicky Dreiling (rel July 1, 2011, 352 pgs)

Rating: B

Romance: 3/5            Raunch: 3.5/5

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