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A Rogue's Proposal
ISBN 0380805693 / 9780380805693 / 0-380-80569-3
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Setting: Regency England
Harold Henry Cynster--better known as Demon to family and friends--leaves London society for the all-male environment of his Newmarket stables in an attempt to escape matchmaking mamas and the spate of marriages that have decimated the ranks of his bachelor cousins. But Demon barely sets one foot on his property before he notices a too-shapely boy settling into the saddle of his favorite Irish Thoroughbred. Beautiful Felicity Parteger hasn't seen Demon Cynster since she was a young girl, when with clear-sighted practicality she'd reasoned that the handsome rake was a threat to every female's heart and had scrupulously disappeared every time he visited her guardian, General Sir Gordon Caxton. When Demon finds her masquerading as a stable lad and demands an explanation, she has no choice but to confess that she's trying to uncover information about a racing syndicate that bribes jockeys. The General's son, Dillon, has fallen in with them and is now in hiding to escape their threats on his life.
With cool efficiency Demon attempts to take over her campaign to save Dillon. Felicity, however, refuses to sit home and tend to her needlework while Demon has all the fun, and a partnership of sorts is formed. Much to Demon's delight, she also willingly cooperates in his plans for seduction; but pleasure turns to frustration when Felicity refuses his marriage proposal. Although she's head-over-heels in love with him, the independent young woman has no intention of saying "I do" to the infamous rake before he says "I love you" to her. While the two lovers risk their lives in tracking the dangerous syndicate, they engage in a courtship dance that risks both of their hearts as well.
In this, the fourth book in the Bar Cynster series, Laurens offers a hero and heroine full of honor, courage, wit, and humor; Demon Cynster--a man who has never wanted love and marriage--meets his match in Felicity, an intelligent and passionate woman who refuses to settle for anything less than his heart. The course of true love never did run smoothly, and it's no different for these two, but they're clearly two halves of a passionate whole--and passion and romance, solidly anchored in a well-crafted plot, is something Laurens does so very well. --Lois Faye Dyer [via]