The premise of the story is a good one, a father bets his beautiful daughter, Charlotte, in a card game and loses to a less than perfect man, Roman. Charlotte, not of any noble blood, has been brought up by her parents to be perfect, in looks, temperament, and behavior. She is tolerated by the ton because it is a know fact that she will marry well and gain some sort of title, thus giving her father the thing he wants more. As a result, she feels cold and lonely from everyone but her younger sister, Emily. Charlotte also feels the pressure to marry well to secure happiness and some sort of freedom for Emily, who is shipped off to boarding school and barely tolerated by their parents because she is too carefree and nowhere near as beautiful as her older sister.
On the night that Charlotte is to pay her fathers debt, Roman offers her the chance to refuse, but as he has needled her beforehand, she declares she does not back down from paying whats due. Roman also is not a member of the ton. He is a self made man, with many dealings in gambling halls and many of the under goings of London. He is a bit of a sinister man but is instantly attracted to Charlotte and thus begins the back and forth between these two.
I really enjoyed watching the attraction grow into something deeper and how Roman gradually broke down her walls and her with his. But at the same time, I was a bit confused with everything else that was going on. I never really grasped what all Roman does, and that may have to do with the fact I just never got to sit down and really read, but I just felt a bit muddled throughout. We learn quite quickly that Charlottes father expects nothing but perfection but the ending didn't really resolve that issue for me. Their was some resolution with the relationship with her mother, but I would have liked a bit more. Emily was a fun addition to the story and I would have liked to know a bit more about her and I hope she turns up in future books (if there are more). It was nice to see Max and Miranda again and how Charlotte wishes in her heart to have the love they have. Also, there were a few too many dangling threads left open for me and I would have like resolved.
Overall, this is an enjoyable book. Maybe not the best to me, or for me, but I can see this appealing to many readers as it was very well written but I just never got that deep connection this time. I look forward to more books, hopefully one involving Romans brother as his back story was just skimmed over and there has to be much more there! 3/12 stars
I received this book via netgalley.com