kode adsense disini
Hot Best Seller

Wicked and the Wallflower

Availability: Ready to download

When Wicked Comes Calling... When a mysterious stranger finds his way into her bedchamber and offers his help in landing a duke, Lady Felicity Faircloth agrees—on one condition. She's seen enough of the world to believe in passion, and won't accept a marriage without it. The Wallflower Makes a Dangerous Bargain... Bastard son of a duke and king of London's dark streets, Devil When Wicked Comes Calling... When a mysterious stranger finds his way into her bedchamber and offers his help in landing a duke, Lady Felicity Faircloth agrees—on one condition. She's seen enough of the world to believe in passion, and won't accept a marriage without it. The Wallflower Makes a Dangerous Bargain... Bastard son of a duke and king of London's dark streets, Devil has spent a lifetime wielding power and seizing opportunity, and the spinster wallflower is everything he needs to exact a revenge years in the making. All he must do is turn the plain little mouse into an irresistible temptress, set his trap, and destroy his enemy. For the Promise of Passion... But there's nothing plain about Felicity Faircloth, who quickly decides she'd rather have Devil than another. Soon, Devil's carefully laid plans are in chaos, and he must choose between everything he's ever wanted...and the only thing he's ever desired.


Compare
kode adsense disini

When Wicked Comes Calling... When a mysterious stranger finds his way into her bedchamber and offers his help in landing a duke, Lady Felicity Faircloth agrees—on one condition. She's seen enough of the world to believe in passion, and won't accept a marriage without it. The Wallflower Makes a Dangerous Bargain... Bastard son of a duke and king of London's dark streets, Devil When Wicked Comes Calling... When a mysterious stranger finds his way into her bedchamber and offers his help in landing a duke, Lady Felicity Faircloth agrees—on one condition. She's seen enough of the world to believe in passion, and won't accept a marriage without it. The Wallflower Makes a Dangerous Bargain... Bastard son of a duke and king of London's dark streets, Devil has spent a lifetime wielding power and seizing opportunity, and the spinster wallflower is everything he needs to exact a revenge years in the making. All he must do is turn the plain little mouse into an irresistible temptress, set his trap, and destroy his enemy. For the Promise of Passion... But there's nothing plain about Felicity Faircloth, who quickly decides she'd rather have Devil than another. Soon, Devil's carefully laid plans are in chaos, and he must choose between everything he's ever wanted...and the only thing he's ever desired.

30 review for Wicked and the Wallflower

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sarah MacLean

    Well, I mean, obviously I like it. I'm thrilled to tell you that WICKED & THE WALLFLOWER is finished and ready for bookstores -- and coming your way June 19, 2018! This is a new series -- spun off of all my other series (you'll see the Fallen Angel and the Singing Sparrow again!) -- set in Covent Garden and featuring my Bareknuckle Bastards--three siblings who run a variety of businesses (some more legal than others) in the dark corners of London. I'm so excited for you to meet the first of Well, I mean, obviously I like it. I'm thrilled to tell you that WICKED & THE WALLFLOWER is finished and ready for bookstores -- and coming your way June 19, 2018! This is a new series -- spun off of all my other series (you'll see the Fallen Angel and the Singing Sparrow again!) -- set in Covent Garden and featuring my Bareknuckle Bastards--three siblings who run a variety of businesses (some more legal than others) in the dark corners of London. I'm so excited for you to meet the first of the Bastards, Devil, and the woman who brings him to his knees, who anyone who has read THE DAY OF THE DUCHESS, will recognize! Wicked & the Wallflower is available for preorder now at: Amazon B&N Books-a-Million iBooks Kobo Google Books Your Local Indie, or My local indie (signed & with goodies!)

  2. 5 out of 5

    Bibi

    I didn't like Felicity and barely tolerated Devil/Devon, the only bright spot in this story was actually, Ewan/Marwick. Sorry.

  3. 4 out of 5

    WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker

    I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. Felicity Faircloth is clinging to the edges of respectability and she is tired of it. Deciding to show her former friends that she is just as good, if not better than them, she tells a little white lie and claims she is betrothed to the Duke of Marwick. Devil has never been respectable and doesn't care. What he does care for is a childhood pact, one the Duke of M I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. Felicity Faircloth is clinging to the edges of respectability and she is tired of it. Deciding to show her former friends that she is just as good, if not better than them, she tells a little white lie and claims she is betrothed to the Duke of Marwick. Devil has never been respectable and doesn't care. What he does care for is a childhood pact, one the Duke of Marwick is looking to break. Felicity gets caught up in a decades old feud and Devil finds himself in a trap of his own making.   “You are too late for the duke,” she repeated, knowing, even as she spoke, that she must stop the words from coming. Except they were a runaway horse—loosed and free and wild. “Because I’ve already landed him.”   First in The Bareknuckle Bastards series, you will recognize Felicity from The Day of the Duchess but everything else is a fresh introduction to this world MacLean has created. The background that holds this series together is three bastard brothers, a girl they call their sister, and the monster father that tried to pit them against each other. There is a flashback to show how Devil (Devon) gets together with his brothers and father but any other past happenings are either inner monologue from Devil or some reminiscing/discussion with Whit (Beast), Ewan (Duke of Marwick), and Dahlia (Grace). I actually would have preferred more flashback scenes of them together as children to get a better feel for their relationships and what happened to them as children. I imagine since this is a series, the author wants to keep some mystery for the other characters and events and thus why we get more of an outline in this one, but it did hurt the emotional impact of Devil's background.   No heirs was the rule. The only rule.   The plot is Devil threatening the Duke of Marwick to stop his search for a wife, which Marwick is only doing to get Devil and Whit to come out of the shadows and have them tell or reveal where Grace is. It is kept a bit shady but apparently Marwick threatened or is a danger to Grace. There is talk about how the children made a pact to never let their father win and they would never give him the heirs he was so desperate for to continue his line. By taking the title of Marwick, Ewan fought "for" his father and the other kids ran away to save themselves. There is talk about Grace and Ewan loving each other, more than a brother sister relationship Devil and Whit seem to have with her, but Devil seems to think he must keep Grace away from Ewan for her safety. Felicity walks into their battle when she declares to be betrothed to Marwick, giving Marwick more validity that he is willing to get married and heirs if they don't tell him where Grace is. Devil decides to create a plan where he seduces Felicity and get her to break the betrothal, showing Ewan he will always be there to ruin his plans. He took a step away from her, rubbing the back of one hand over his lips. He shook his head. “Christ. You’ll burn me down.”   Devil inevitably finds himself captivated by Felicity and falling in love with her but incessantly thinking he is not good enough for her. There is a lot of talk about how Devil is dark, from the darkness, dwells in the darkness, etc. but, as with a majority of the story, it is a lot of telling and not showing. Our couple meets up right away in the story and I kind of missed getting to know them outside of their developing relationship. Felicity was the stronger character for me and I liked her emerging, building of confidence, and self-actualization but her relationship with her family felt a bit whiffed on and she pretty much is all in with Devil right away. Devil begins to feel a bit silly and repetitive with his supposed darkness, lusting, and "I'm not good enough for her." They have fun banter in the beginning but I just never felt like I "knew" them and therefore their chemistry was lacking for me.   It was him. Here. In her bedchamber. As though it were perfectly normal.   The set-up with MacLean’s characters and relationships is promising but the emotional impact, possibly because of a shallow look at their childhood here, was not really there. There is a little bit of cheese factor too, with the supposed darkness of Devil and how he and his brother run their rookery. Devil’s brother "Beast" does a lot, and I mean a lot, of grunting, it becomes rather silly after a while but he seems interesting with his underground fighting. Grace probably shined the most with her personality, ownership of a for women bordello, and only one to point out that holding onto a pact made in childhood may not be completely mature in adulthood; I do find myself very curious about her and Ewan's relationship. Overall, this started off as fun escapism with the good girl wanting to go rogue and the Devil encouraging her but losing his thought to be nonexistent heart. As it went on though, it never developed the depth and emotion I look for and ended up feeling like window dressing with not a lot to back up the pretty cover.   “You should not have come.” She swallowed, refusing to let him win. “Why not?” “Because it is dangerous,” he said quietly, sending a shiver of belief through her. “Because the rookeries are no place for pretty girls with a breathless anticipation of adventure.”

  4. 4 out of 5

    Astrid - The Bookish Sweet Tooth

    READ MY REVIEW ON THE BLOG When you start a book by one of your favorites you expect great things. When I started Wicked and the Wallflower I felt a tiny bit let down by Sarah MacLean. To be honest, the first half of the book I struggled - while I loved Felicity and Devil, it dragged in parts and I was afraid that it would be like that all the way until the end. I feared that it would be my first low rating for Ms. MacLean. Until I came to the middle of the story and all of a sudden it went from READ MY REVIEW ON THE BLOG When you start a book by one of your favorites you expect great things. When I started Wicked and the Wallflower I felt a tiny bit let down by Sarah MacLean. To be honest, the first half of the book I struggled - while I loved Felicity and Devil, it dragged in parts and I was afraid that it would be like that all the way until the end. I feared that it would be my first low rating for Ms. MacLean. Until I came to the middle of the story and all of a sudden it went from a three star to a five star. Let me linger a bit on the first half - I think this story would have benefited from more showing than telling. Devil's story was told in his thoughts but it was never shown to us. I would have liked to see dialogues, scenes from the past with his brothers and sister to explain why things were so hostile between the hero and his brother. However, in the second half the pace picked up considerably and threw me into a whirlwind of emotions, from anger and frustration to sappy "aawwws" and adoration for both Devil and Felicity. “Let me tell you about passion, Felicity Faircloth. Passion is obsession. It is desire beyond reason. It is not want, but need. And it comes with the worst of sin far more often than it comes with the best of it.” Felicity was a wonderful heroine - she had spunk and courage. Her spirit made this story - for her to feel plain and not very interesting she had so much fire and charm. Her beauty was inside and it's what drew Devil to her. She was a pariah in the circles she moved in because of one mistake. And all she wanted was being accepted back by the ton until Devil showed her that the sparkle of a ballroom is boring compared to the rugged beauty of Covent Garden. She was so sweet, heady and lush and soft like that spun sugar from all those years ago. She was sin and sex and freedom and pleasure and something more and something worse, and he was lost in the feel of her lips and the taste of her when she opened to him like she’d been waiting her whole life for him. Devil was the wounded soul that needed saving. He never felt he deserved the spirited Felicity Faircloth although his desperation for wanting her was so palpable. He wanted to give her to world when all she wanted was him. Devil had so much goodness him and yet he couldn't see it. The things he did for the people under his protection spoke of his character. I loved him as much as he frustrated me. He bolstered Felicity's self-worth, made her feel like the treasure she was. His determination to protect Felicity was matched by hers to break down the walls of this mysterious man. My heart broke for these two when they seemed to be at a stalemate. "I wanted you from the start. It was only a matter of time before everything—everything—was second to me wanting you. To me keeping you safe. To me loving you.” I adored the smart banter between the main characters but I despised Felicity's family - they were selfish, spineless bastards and I couldn't fathom why Felicity would give up her own happiness just to save their dumb asses. I adored Dev's quiet but powerful brother Whit and I am very much looking forward to getting his story. Also, Ewan and Grace have me salivating for their story and I can't wait to see how Sarah MacLean will redeem Ewan - I don't feel very benevolent toward him right now. Ms. MacLean captures the atmosphere of Covent Garden and its dangers and harsh beauty with wonderful prose and I felt totally at home there. Her storytelling is captivating and gorgeous. Whit's book, Brazen and the Beast, is a year away so it will be a while until I get to spend time with The Bareknuckle Bastards again. While Wicked and the Wallflower was off to a slow start it totally won me over  in the second half and it totally grabbed my by the feels and wouldn't let go. If that is how Sarah MacLean does it in this series I'm happy to grab the next one.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Nicola

    This has had me well and truly stumped for a review—when a book goes from almost being a DNF to outstanding then it’s no easy task. I think the most important point to get over is that Wicked and the Wallflower was worth the perseverance, because whilst the first half was a little drawn out, what it leads to was exceptional. Felicity Faircloth, you are not what I expected.” I’ve only read one other Sarah MacLean novel, The Day of the Duchess , and having loved it along with being introduced to This has had me well and truly stumped for a review—when a book goes from almost being a DNF to outstanding then it’s no easy task. I think the most important point to get over is that Wicked and the Wallflower was worth the perseverance, because whilst the first half was a little drawn out, what it leads to was exceptional. Felicity Faircloth, you are not what I expected.” I’ve only read one other Sarah MacLean novel, The Day of the Duchess , and having loved it along with being introduced to Lady Felicity and passing mentions of The Bareknuckle Bastards—the pair of brothers running the dark streets of Covent Garden—my interest in this spin-off series was well and truly piqued. Ousted by her friends for her single status, Felicity finds herself telling a bit of a fib and one that sees her making the acquaintance of a man whose name is befitting of his character. Are you certain you wish a favor from the Devil?” Spirited and a fighter, I loved Felicity with her quick wit, sharp retorts and honesty, and Devil soon discovers there is far more to her than he could have anticipated. And underneath the tough exterior and bravado is a loveable rogue who has fought his way through life but firmly believes himself unworthy of a woman like Felicity. He would never be good enough to stand in her sunlight, but he could absolutely protect her from the darkness.” Sarah MacLean has a wonderful writing voice—there is a definite acknowledgement to todays important issues in her gender portrayal and consent which I appreciated—and whilst I maintain the opinion that the storyline lacked the grab factor early on to the point of stalling, at the same time she displays skill when it comes to character development and that’s what kept me reading. And I’m glad for that as when the momentum did gather pace, I suddenly found myself wholly immersed in the atmosphere, the romance and the emotion which at times made my heart ache. I want to stay in your world. In the darkness. Beneath the stars.” The potential for this series is huge with Dev’s brother Whit (Beast) and sister, Grace featuring throughout and I’m looking forward to seeing how their stories play out. All that’s left is to try and remember that patience is a virtue as Brazen and the Beast isn’t scheduled until June 2019. (Not bad going for someone who said she was stumped, I know.) Copy received courtesy of Avon/HarperCollins via Edelweiss for an honest and unbiased opinion.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Robin (Bridge Four)

    Felicity Faircloth is a fairytale name to be sure, but she never thought she’d get her fairytale until the night she met a Devil. In a world where women are a commodity to be sold off to the highest bidder and bargained with for alliances, money and prestige Felicity has found that the family she loves is plotting to marry her off to a Duke or anyone with money really to same themselves. She thought it her place, she wanted to help, but maybe there is more to the world than being used to farther Felicity Faircloth is a fairytale name to be sure, but she never thought she’d get her fairytale until the night she met a Devil. In a world where women are a commodity to be sold off to the highest bidder and bargained with for alliances, money and prestige Felicity has found that the family she loves is plotting to marry her off to a Duke or anyone with money really to same themselves. She thought it her place, she wanted to help, but maybe there is more to the world than being used to farther one’s family goals. Maybe just maybe she should be thinking about her own desires and the man that brings them out in her. This is a pretty cute tale. Felicity has been cast out of the inner ring of society due to a scandal or two and makes a desperate claim in a moment of weakness. She never thought that it would go anywhere but when the Devil claims he can make it a reality, to save her family Felicity agrees to a Devils bargain. “Let me tell you about passion, Felicity Faircloth. Passion is obsession. It is desire beyond reason. It is not want, but need. And it comes with the worst of sin far more often than it comes with the best of it.” You know going in that the Devil and the Damsel in distress are made for each other. It will just take them a little time to sort through everything to come to that realization as well. Felicity is a lot of fun though while she is exploring the shadier side of life. She isn’t your normal woman of the gentry, she likes a little danger and adventure and has a penchant for picking locks. “It’s not the kind of skill one expects a woman to have.” “It’s exactly the kind of skill we should have. Our whole world is built by men. For them. And we’re simply here for decoration, brought in at the end of everything important. Well, I grow tired of ends. Locks are beginnings.” This couple was fun, I like the discovery of the Devil’s past and how he and his brothers were raised along with the sister who is not their sister at all. There are definitely some interesting stories there and I can’t wait to find out specifically how Grace’s (the sister) story will go. I totally loved her in this and know that she is going to be a great character. Add to that a brother nicknamed Beast and I’m pretty sure that will be a story trope I can get behind since Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite re-tellings ever. This was a great start to a new Historical Romance Series. I really enjoyed The Rules of Scoundrels series by Sarah MacLean and hope to enjoy this series just as much if not more

  7. 4 out of 5

    Hollis

    "So many doors are closed to all but a fraction of us. Why should others be the ones to decide which doors are for me?" I'm like this | | close to awarding this a five but there was one bit at the end there I didn't quite love. I still might come back and round-up though. However.. this is hands down my favourite MacLean to-date. I'm perhaps not as well versed in her stories as I should be but I've dabbled in the starter books of two different series and completed the one that this one off-shoots "So many doors are closed to all but a fraction of us. Why should others be the ones to decide which doors are for me?" I'm like this | | close to awarding this a five but there was one bit at the end there I didn't quite love. I still might come back and round-up though. However.. this is hands down my favourite MacLean to-date. I'm perhaps not as well versed in her stories as I should be but I've dabbled in the starter books of two different series and completed the one that this one off-shoots from (Scandal & Scoundrel) with good, but not great, results. WICKED AND THE WALLFLOWER blew my medium expectations out of the water. And I highlighted the shit out of this book. "My mother has strict requirements for any suitor." "For example?" "A heartbeat." I'm not sure any romance reader is averse to the good girl + bad boy trope and it's often sexier in the historical romance genre. No one liked a spinster less than the world that made her. With an almost-on-the-shelf wallflower, twenty-seven, plain, and very nearly ruined by being courted, and then dismissed, by a Duke, Felicity Faircloth is feeling both resentful and envious of the fact that she is no longer accepted by society, and no longer desirable, if she ever really was. And yet she still requires a husband, she must still attend balls in hopes of catching the eye of a potential suitor, even if every outing has her feeling more discarded, more alone, than the one before. She wants the love and acceptance her brother found in his marriage, the love that kept the Duke of Haven from offering for her, when he was so desperate for his wife. And though every potential suitor on offer by way of her brother is wealthy, could guarantee her the kind of life for which she is accustomed to, she dismisses them, thinking she is still not so desperate to accept a proposal she doesn't want. "Mr. Binghamton is deadly dull." "He's rich as a king." "Not rich enough for me to marry, I'm afraid. Wealth does not purchase a personality." But when her circumstances change, when an ill-timed lie backs her into a corner, her rescuer is not the expected white knight in shining armour. His name, in fact, is Devil. "I thought I had money. Someone stole it. I didn't even feel it." "Our cutpurses are the best in town." "You must be very proud." And he lives upto his name. Devil sees in Felicity the perfect chance for revenge. Revenge against his brother, one of three bastards born to the Duke of Mayfair, who, through a complicated set of circumstances, has inherited their father's title. With the current Duke of Mayfair on the hunt for a wife, which would betray an oath the boys took as children, and with Felicity spouting off that she has ensnared the new Duke, Devil makes her a bargain. He promises her that she will win her Duke and have her happily ever after. All she needs to do is grant him a boon for his services. He never imagines that this plain wallflower, almost a spinster, might bring Devil, one of the Bareknuckle Bastards, the King of Covent Garden, to his knees. He wondered what he might have done to open that door if he'd known she was on the other side. There were so many elements at play in this new series opener that I loved. There was ice-smuggling. There was a lock-picking spinster. There was a revenge plot. Complicated backstory. A self-aware heroine who longs to leave the glittering world she's always known for something.. more. A broody hero with legitimate trust and self-worth issues. So much delicious potential for future books and characters (which, I mean, we obviously know we're getting). Fabulously written sex scenes with dialogue chockful of consent and agency. A villain who might be more layered than your standard cat-stroking mustache-twirler. And quite a few scenes that made me outright laugh. "I'm not happy with you right now, Felicity Faircloth." "I can see that, as you just broke down a door." I can't wait for book two! 4.5 "I'm going to steal you and make you mine / it's not theft if I allow it" stars ** I received an ARC from Edelweiss and the publisher (thank you!) in exchange for an honest review. **

  8. 5 out of 5

    Holly

    3.5 stars A man called Devil turns out to be a mostly honorable scoundrel, meanwhile a shunned wallflower suddenly finds herself no longer concerned much about propriety when faced with freedom. I liked the banter between the two main characters, but the 'setting you free because I am not worthy of you' trope is uninteresting and illogical considering at that time she would be set free...to be alone and shunned by everyone she knows and thrusting her entire family into poverty. Gee, thanks? Also 3.5 stars A man called Devil turns out to be a mostly honorable scoundrel, meanwhile a shunned wallflower suddenly finds herself no longer concerned much about propriety when faced with freedom. I liked the banter between the two main characters, but the 'setting you free because I am not worthy of you' trope is uninteresting and illogical considering at that time she would be set free...to be alone and shunned by everyone she knows and thrusting her entire family into poverty. Gee, thanks? Also repetitive words - darkness/light, moth/flame, and her full name Felicity Faircloth I'll more than likely read the next two books to see what happens to the rest of the siblings, but man their father was quite promiscuous!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Pepa

    Al final se lleva las 4... Ha empezado siendo una novela más, de esas que has leído 100 veces. Pero creo que ella va evolucionando muy bien y pasa de ser esa solterona que ha renunciado a sus sueños a coger su futuro con las manos y luchar por él Me ha gustado todo el tema del "trabajo" de él, interesante el tema La historia de los tres hermanos se prevé durilla. Admito que Devil (no sé ni cuantos protagonistas he leído ya con ese apodo) tampoco es un personaje que llame excesivamente mi atención al Al final se lleva las 4... Ha empezado siendo una novela más, de esas que has leído 100 veces. Pero creo que ella va evolucionando muy bien y pasa de ser esa solterona que ha renunciado a sus sueños a coger su futuro con las manos y luchar por él Me ha gustado todo el tema del "trabajo" de él, interesante el tema La historia de los tres hermanos se prevé durilla. Admito que Devil (no sé ni cuantos protagonistas he leído ya con ese apodo) tampoco es un personaje que llame excesivamente mi atención al principio, pero al final el giro que da me ha parecido original... sin llegar nunca de ser el héroe pero manteniendo la fuerza humana (esto ya sé que es complicado de entender, pero no quiero spoilear) Entre ellos hay una historia común pero bonita, sobre todo con esa metáfora de la llama y la polilla... y esas frases que la reafirman Eso sí, ya deseando que publiquen el tercero que será la historia del duque y a ver si ese ser (malvado) consigue conquistarme

  10. 5 out of 5

    Lana ❇✾Dirty Girl Romance❇✾

    4 STARS Felicity Faircloth was perfection—the first taste of it Devil had ever had. She tasted like a promise. Wicked and the Wallflower is the first installment in a brand new series that's sure to be a new addiction for me from one of my favorite historical romance authors. However, I've been sitting on my rating for this book for a couple weeks now, somewhat stumped in how to rate it. I was completely enamored with the story in the first 15%, then somewhere along the way it began to lose me 4 STARS Felicity Faircloth was perfection—the first taste of it Devil had ever had. She tasted like a promise. Wicked and the Wallflower is the first installment in a brand new series that's sure to be a new addiction for me from one of my favorite historical romance authors. However, I've been sitting on my rating for this book for a couple weeks now, somewhat stumped in how to rate it. I was completely enamored with the story in the first 15%, then somewhere along the way it began to lose me, only to reel me back in in the second half. This world is all sin, Felicity, and I am the worst of it.” I love a broody and broken hero, and Devil certainly fits the bill. This is a man that went through hell as a child, only to come up swinging. Now he's one of the notorious Bareknuckle Bastards, as rich as he is ruthless, and running a crime ring in the heart of Covent Garden. For years, Devil has yearned for revenge against those that wronged him and his family, and he's so close he can taste it now. But a woman just may throw a wrench into his hard built plans. You wish to do the consuming.” She wished to be wanted. Beyond reason. She wished to be ached for. “You wish for him to fly into your flame.” Lady Felicity Faircloth is in desperate need to wed a Duke. A mistake has now put her on the outskirts of the Ton, and made her into a social pariah. Her only recourse to help herself and her family is to wed a Duke. But Felicity is no vain or mindless twit. This is a woman of passion that will not settle for anything other than true love; no matter how much her incredibly selfish family pushes her otherwise. For surely, no man on earth should be as handsome as this one. He looked remarkably like his voice sounded. Like a low, liquid rumble. Like temptation. Like sin. A bargain with the Devil just may be the answer she seeks, but it doesn't go quite as planned. I was instantly hooked from the first chapter of this book. I was intrigued by Devil and his story, as well as those of his brothers and sister. This was also the reason for my later struggle. Because while the author paints a beguiling picture with this character, she doesn't quite give the character development that I yearned for. There's a lot backstory to him that seems to happen off the pages, things that the reader is told, but you don't quite feel it. I struggled with this for the better part of the first half of the book. I wanted more of a connection to Devil and his past. Felicity was a heroine I loved straight away. She's full of spark and sharp wit. I couldn't get enough of her. In a world of propriety beyond all, she stood out like a flame. She knew what she wanted and she wasn't afraid to voice it or to go after it. She was the perfect balance to Devil and I couldn't get enough of their chemistry. I’m going to steal you, instead,” he said then, knowing she’d hear the words as part of the story and not as she should—as the truth. “I’m going to steal you,” he confessed again. “I’m going to steal you and make you mine.” “It’s not theft if I allow it,” she whispered. Silly girl; of course it was. But it wouldn’t stop him. The second half of the book is where it really hooked me. We get a lot more story on Devil (though never quite as much as I hoped for) and the romance truly begins to bloom. Sarah MacLean has a way with words that I simply adore, and she has hooked me completely on The Bareknuckle Bastards. I'm captivated and already salivating to learn more about Beast, Cassie, and even more of the naughty Duke himself. The romance here was a slow burn but oh so satisfying. With plenty of chemistry to keep a reader yearning for Felicity and Duke's HEA. So while it wasn't quite what I had hoped, it still kept me glued to the pages and eager to see what happens in the end. I can't wait for more in this series! ARC courtesy of publisher in exchange for an honest review Find me on:

  11. 4 out of 5

    Shawna

    3 stars - Historical Romance This was okay and the audiobook narrator was great. But there were definitely some things that bugged me. *Overused historical romance tropes...The revenge plot and dark, devilish hero paired with a plain-jane spinster heroine have been done before and better. *Very repetitive...I lost count of how many times the words/phrase “moth”, “flame”, and “moth to flame” were used. And the hero, Devil, called the heroine by her full name constantly. Seriously, he said “Felicity 3 stars - Historical Romance This was okay and the audiobook narrator was great. But there were definitely some things that bugged me. *Overused historical romance tropes...The revenge plot and dark, devilish hero paired with a plain-jane spinster heroine have been done before and better. *Very repetitive...I lost count of how many times the words/phrase “moth”, “flame”, and “moth to flame” were used. And the hero, Devil, called the heroine by her full name constantly. Seriously, he said “Felicity Faircloth” so many times in the story that I thought I’d scream. I did like the overall arc of the story and the secondary characters. I’m looking forward to Whit’s book, and I’m curious if/how she’ll redeem Ewan.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Christie«SHBBblogger»

    Title: Wicked and the Wallflower Series: Bareknuckle Bastards #1 Author: Sarah MacLean Release date: June 19, 2018 Cliffhanger: No HEA(view spoiler)[Yes (hide spoiler)] Men raised in the dark will do anything for light. She wondered if he realized how much she wanted to explore the darkness. Sarah MacLean thrilled me with this first installment in the Bareknuckle Bastards series! It's one of those books that you greedily consume, then slowly sigh in contentment after turning the last page. After that Title: Wicked and the Wallflower Series: Bareknuckle Bastards #1 Author: Sarah MacLean Release date: June 19, 2018 Cliffhanger: No HEA(view spoiler)[Yes (hide spoiler)] Men raised in the dark will do anything for light. She wondered if he realized how much she wanted to explore the darkness. Sarah MacLean thrilled me with this first installment in the Bareknuckle Bastards series! It's one of those books that you greedily consume, then slowly sigh in contentment after turning the last page. After that? You'll want to flip back to the beginning and re-read your favorite parts all over again because you want it to last just a little bit longer. There's nothing like the rush of starting a new series that checks every single historical romance box you have, and that's exactly what I found in Wicked and the Wallflower. The Bareknuckle Bastards rule the seedy side of London with an iron fist, and merciless retribution for anyone that cross them. Their road to wealth and power began with street fighting, and eventually led to a smuggling empire built out of sheer grit and determination. No one is immune to their control. Not even the man who calls himself Robert, Duke of Marwick. One of three bastard sons to born to the former Duke, the title and lands were conceded to him under the deal with his brothers that he would never have any children to continue the family line. It was the one promise of solidarity after the years of terror and abuse he subjected them to. Once it was known that he intended to renege on their deal, the gloves came off, and things promised to get dirty. The backstory of the group's tragic childhood is presented here with just enough detail to intrigue without slowing down the pace of the plot. Oftentimes, setting up a series can take away from the romance development, but that wasn't the case with Devil and Felicity. I felt the intensity of their attraction in every witty verbal match, and every sly glance. Devil is a character that I shouldn't have liked based on his selfish scheming to use Felicity as a disposable pawn in his power play. But right from the very start, there's something about him that draws you in and snares your attention. He's a hardened man, scarred physically and emotionally, exuding an air of mystery and wickedness. But all it takes is one meeting on a dark balcony with Felicity Faircloth before you see the struggle with his conscience trying to break through. Once one of the brightest stars of society, a scandal and financial ruin have killed Felicity's chances of every marrying, which places her firmly "on the shelf." The lords and ladies she once considered friends now turn up their noses in her presence. They either pretend as if she doesn't exist, or go out of their way to humiliate her. She's hurt and vulnerable when she boldly (and foolishly) starts a rumor that she has hooked the hottest catch of the year: the Duke of Marwick. And with this lie, she unknowingly steps into a situation that's sure to dig a deep grave for the final resting place of her reputation. I loved Felicity's surprising gift of lockpicking. It was one of those things about her that contradicted the plain and boring label that came along with being a wallflower. I don't think I've read a heroine quite like her before which was extremely refreshing. “I pick locks because I can. Because there are very few things in the world I can control, and locks are something I am good at. They are a barrier I can clear. And a secret I can know. And in the end, they bend to my will and . . .” She shrugged. “I like that.” Underestimated and overlooked by everyone, it left her with an emptiness that she mistakenly believed could be filled by their acceptance. Like many women of her time, she didn't have a lot of freedom or choices. Her family was horribly selfish, and expected her to clean up their mess like a sacrificial lamb sent off to slaughter. So not only was she mistreated by those she once considered her friends, but she didn't even have family who truly cared about her wellbeing. That's a pretty lonely place to be, and it left her ripe for the alluring promises Devil whispered in her ear. She wanted fire and passion, but not just that, she wanted to do the burning. She wanted to know what it was like to captivate a man and inspire uncontrollable passion. “You are the most remarkable woman I’ve ever known, and if I have only this moment—this present—with you, then I wish to make you burn until you’ve made the stars jealous of your heat.” That quote right there...easily a favorite from the entire book, but there were SO MANY that held me absolutely riveted and on edge. You know that there is going to be a moment of reckoning when the truth comes out, and that makes for some deliciously angsty reading. I'm telling you, I was hopelessly ADDICTED to the sparks that flew between this couple. Devil's siblings Whit and Dahlia were amazing in their own right, and brimming with potential. However, Dahlia is my favorite of the two as the reigning Queen Covent Garden. She is one serious badass who can hold her own in the streets, and I have a feeling that her book is going to be the most exciting of the entire series. After reading this story, I am officially stalking Brazen and the Beast until its June 2019 publication. Take my word for it, you do not want to miss this one. FOLLOW SMOKIN HOT BOOK BLOG ON:

  13. 4 out of 5

    Stacey is Sassy

    Are we there yet...? I liked Wicked and the Wallflower but to be honest, it dragged for me. It took me way too long to get through this story and I normally devour anything Sarah MacLean writes. I think my biggest problem was that I never really connected with the characters. I thought the heroine was a ninny, the hero not as tough/strong/intimidating as I was told, and the villain a little insipid. Harsh, I know, but I needed more from them. I just didn't feel part of this story and never felt a Are we there yet...? I liked Wicked and the Wallflower but to be honest, it dragged for me. It took me way too long to get through this story and I normally devour anything Sarah MacLean writes. I think my biggest problem was that I never really connected with the characters. I thought the heroine was a ninny, the hero not as tough/strong/intimidating as I was told, and the villain a little insipid. Harsh, I know, but I needed more from them. I just didn't feel part of this story and never felt a desperate need to keep going. She's a plain spinster, her name is in tatters and her family is desperate for her to marry. The only way she can improve her situation is to marry well and by well, I mean financially well. When the Duke of Marwick aka The Mad Duke, comes to town, it seems like the perfect answer to her problems. He's on a mission of revenge and she's the instrument to cause the most destruction. What better way to seek his revenge than laying a trap for the Duke to fall for Lady Lockpick. He wants the Duke to suffer and at first, he's willing to do whatever it takes to get his revenge. Neither knew that what they wished for wasn't all that they desired. There was definitely chemistry between the characters but I wasn't completely convinced in their love story. I'm going to put in spoilers my biggest problem with the story and where it took my rating from a 4 star to a 3 star. (view spoiler)[I'm not a fan of the...Just one night of pleasure... storyline. If you love someone, why would you settle for just one night? Someone is only offering you one night, why would you settle for scraps? You know you'll be ruined, why risk it on someone who won't have your back? Sure, I get in the heat of the moment passion, but when you've consciously decided to sell yourself short, it seems silly. Honestly, it drives me bonkers and makes me roll my eyes. (hide spoiler)] You can't win them all. Don't go by my review alone as a lot of others enjoyed Wicked and the Wallflower. I'm not writing the series off as I enjoyed meeting Devil, Whit, Grace, Nik and Evan. I think Evan's hiding something...maybe even protecting them from a truth? Oh well, I guess we'll just have to wait and see.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Mei

    Revenge plot between two brothers turns sour when one falls for the tool of that revenge! Felicity, the wallflower, has been chosen by Devil as a tool to thwart his brother's plot of getting a heir, but almost since the beginning Devil is intrigued by the seeminly plain woman. As the time passes he is more and more attracted to her. She's not plain at all! On the contrary, she's very much smart and intelligent and challenges his in unexcpected ways! I liked both Felicity and Devil, but also Grace a Revenge plot between two brothers turns sour when one falls for the tool of that revenge! Felicity, the wallflower, has been chosen by Devil as a tool to thwart his brother's plot of getting a heir, but almost since the beginning Devil is intrigued by the seeminly plain woman. As the time passes he is more and more attracted to her. She's not plain at all! On the contrary, she's very much smart and intelligent and challenges his in unexcpected ways! I liked both Felicity and Devil, but also Grace and Whit and I almost liked Ewan too! I'm expecting that SML will develop their stories in the next books! We get to see here that there's more to the story about their father and his monstruous challenges he throw his children in. I have high hopes for Grace and Ewan's story! The way Ewan is referring to Grace didn't seemed to me as how a man who wants her dead is behaving! To me it seems like a deeply in love man would behave! And Grace too. There must be some deep secret there and I'm curious to discover it! Yes, I know Ewan appears a the villain here, but I just don't want to belive it! :)

  15. 5 out of 5

    Lindsay

    Well, it's been out for a month and has nearly 450 reviews and an average rating well over 4. Time to give this author a try. Lady Felicity Faircloth has fallen out of favor with the ton as an aging wallflower. One evening she escapes the mockery of her former social set to a dark room where she encounters a voice from the shadows. Soon after the mysterious voice appears at her home in her bed chambers offering her a bargain with the Devil. He will make Felicity irresistible and land her a Duke f Well, it's been out for a month and has nearly 450 reviews and an average rating well over 4. Time to give this author a try. Lady Felicity Faircloth has fallen out of favor with the ton as an aging wallflower. One evening she escapes the mockery of her former social set to a dark room where she encounters a voice from the shadows. Soon after the mysterious voice appears at her home in her bed chambers offering her a bargain with the Devil. He will make Felicity irresistible and land her a Duke for a husband in a passionate love affair in return for an unnamed favor. Devil (Devon)'s plan is one of revenge against the Duke that Felicity has set her sights on, but it almost immediately begins to go awry with the chemistry between the Lady and the Covent Garden gangster. This story really leans into the strength of the banter between the leads, with the majority of the first half of the book covering the sparring between them. Its a lot of fun and the dialogue really sparkles. Its also an interesting angle on the 1800s romance with a greater focus on criminal activities of the time (even if idealized to make the protagonists look good). I think it did drag a little in the second half as the action moved beyond the delightful main pairing, but I think that was inevitable.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Esther

    ARC provided by Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Rating-3.5 I rated in four stars, but I might notch it down to a three. Still processing this read. Not my favorite of SM. RTC

  17. 4 out of 5

    Roshani Chokshi

    I am hopelessly in love with anything and everything Sarah writes. Her heroines are full of depth and warmth, and her romances are exquisitely angst and delicious. I am dying for the next installment!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Riley

    This was my first Sarah MacLean book and I can definitely see why she is so popular!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Geri Reads

    Sarah MacLean's new Bareknucle Bastards series is off to a strong start with Wicked and the Wallflower. It's a passionate and intriguing tale of three brothers who're bound by the secrets of their pasts. “You don’t need lessons in fire. You are an inferno.” Wicked and the Wallflower is about the first brother, Devon, known as Devil to everyone—friends and enemies alike. Devil immediately captures the attention. At the start of the book, his only goal was to uphold a promise from his past but i Sarah MacLean's new Bareknucle Bastards series is off to a strong start with Wicked and the Wallflower. It's a passionate and intriguing tale of three brothers who're bound by the secrets of their pasts. “You don’t need lessons in fire. You are an inferno.” Wicked and the Wallflower is about the first brother, Devon, known as Devil to everyone—friends and enemies alike. Devil immediately captures the attention. At the start of the book, his only goal was to uphold a promise from his past but it's how he goes about achieving those goals that put him immediately in the anti-hero category for me. In spite of that, Sarah MacLean was convincing in her campaign to show her readers that Devil deserves the heroine and a HEA. One of the reasons for this is the heroine Felicity Faircloth. Felicity Faircloth was perfection—the first taste of it Devil had ever had. She was Devil's equal and his perfect foil. She is innocent but she's far from naïve. Felicity is similar to Devil is some ways. She was relegated to the fringes of polite society, just like Devil. But unlike Devil, she wanted to be a part of it. So when Devil offered her a chance to be a part of the ton, she took the chance, not knowing that it's going to bring her ruination once again. “If I were going to take advantage of you, I would approach from the front, Felicity Faircloth. In full view, so you would have the joy of expecting me.” I loved how Devil and Felicity interacted with each other. Brilliantly written dialogue is one of MacLean's skill, and it's on full display here. You could feel the sexual tension and the chemistry in each of those encounters. Aside from that, there's a lot of longing in this book! One of the things that make for a grand romance is to have two characters who desperately want each other but their circumstances and their own fears are keeping them apart. Hence, the longing. Devil and Felicity's longing for each other will make you sigh and swoon at the same time. I also enjoyed how Devil's interactions with his siblings. You can sense their shared pain and history together. Their dysfunction is evident and Sarah MacLean is a master at giving us a taste of what's coming. And just based on what she showed us about Whit and Ewan and Grace, I'm already mentally lining up for the next books in the series. “I’m going to steal you,” he confessed again. “I’m going to steal you and make you mine.” Wicked and the Wallflower is very character driven. Yes, there's a plot but it's not what drives the story forward; it's the characters and their motivations. There's also a lot of intrigue and secrets that I feel would come into play in later books. The seeds are there, and I'm excited to see where it leads. Fans of Sarah MacLean and historical romances will find plenty of things to enjoy in this book. The characters, the romance and the intrigue will keep you entertained and make you swoon like a romance novel should. I highly recommend it.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lover of Romance

    This review was originally posted on Addicted To Romance *May Contain Spoilers* Wicked and the Wallflower is the first book in the latest and newest series by Sarah MacLean...The Bareknuckled Bastards. I have no clue why I held off reading this book for so long, because WOW, I was impressed. This might be one of my favorite books that this author has written since her first trilogy. And I am so GLAD that I decided to try this book out in audio format because the narrator was just wonderful and she This review was originally posted on Addicted To Romance *May Contain Spoilers* Wicked and the Wallflower is the first book in the latest and newest series by Sarah MacLean...The Bareknuckled Bastards. I have no clue why I held off reading this book for so long, because WOW, I was impressed. This might be one of my favorite books that this author has written since her first trilogy. And I am so GLAD that I decided to try this book out in audio format because the narrator was just wonderful and she really added in the humor just right. The Bareknuckled Bastards is a series that features around three siblings---technically there are four...but I am not sure if he is a villain or an anti-hero, this story didn't really decide that factor for me but I don't really like him so I am leaning towards villain. These four siblings were brought together when they were children, three boys, and one girl. All the boys were born on the same day, fathered by the same father but each had different mothers. They all came from less than ideal backgrounds, and then their father wanting his "heir" forced them to fight for the title. And the brother that won the title betrayed them all and now the three siblings joined forced, fought there way to the top and became known as the kings and Queen of Covent Garden and London's underworld.  All three of these siblings are such a HOOT.  I mean honestly, each of these three was so intriguing, but I think the sister intrigued me the most. But their kinship towards each other is so heartfelt and you can see even though they are so badass in the underworld, they will do anything to protect each other. When the brother that is a Duke returns to London against their previous agreement, looking for a wife, they know they must prevent this from happening. They made a vow when they were children, to not let their father have his "heir" after what he did to them and what he made them do to survive. Devil "Devlin" has come up with a plan, a plan that must work but it might involve capturing the attention of a woman that will change him and his world. Felicity Fairchild is known as a wallflower, although she used to be part of a social circle until a scandal that wasn't her fault got her in trouble and she found herself in a man's bedchamber who refused to do the honorable thing and marry her. Which Felicity is very grateful for even if it has cast her into the shadows when she was once in the center of attention. But she would like to return to that world one day before she was cast out and betrayed by those she called "friends". While out on a balcony, she meets a dark stranger, "Devil" who is temptation and witty and makes her laugh but stays hidden in the shadows. And out of a fit of anger, she declares to her "old" friends, that she is engaged to the Duke, well her life is about to go a bit crazy because Devil turns up when she least expects and makes promises to return her to the world she misses. Devil likes to do this on his own time table, but Felicity doesn't work with his clock and shows up on his doorstep, picking his locks, shocking him and pleasing his siblings. “You should not have come.” She swallowed, refusing to let him win. “Why not?” “Because it is dangerous,” he said quietly, sending a shiver of belief through her. “Because the rookeries are no place for pretty girls with a breathless anticipation of adventure.” Devil doesn't know what to make of Felicity, but she is the first woman to truly make him laugh and charms him in a way he has never felt before. But he doesn't know what to do with this unpredictable woman who isn't your typical wallflower you find among the Ton. She might not be a great beauty, but she has her own lovely appearance that is fascinating, her personality is passionate and creative and she is quite willful and independent and she is way more daring that he ever expects her to be. Felicity has been betrayed by her friends, and her family wants to put her on the "marriage mart" to save them from financial ruin because of their own foolish plans and they don't seem to care what she deserves....to have a marriage like her brother and sister in law have, one of love and affection. She wants to be wanted and loved. At first Felicity thinks she wants the world of Mayfair and ballrooms and soirees, but she realizes that she isn't fit for that life....the life she truly wants is one with Devil in Convent Garden where he is in command of everything and everyone, where he lives in the shadows. I always get a kick out of the heroes and heroines that this author writes, but I will say that this book still surprised me. And man...Devil and Felicity really surprised me, both of them really. I mean first off, Devil has a BAD plan, and you just know that from the beginning it's going to backfire on him. I understand where he is coming from, and quite frankly in his world he isn't used to dealing with people and women like Felicity who just come and go into his rookery whenever they please, picks his locks----even the ones he thinks are unpickable, and makes him fall in love before he knows it....his brother and sister know it before he accepts it. Let me tell you about passion, Felicity Faircloth. Passion is obsession. It is desire beyond reason. It is not want, but need. And it comes with the worst of sin far more often than it comes with the best of it There are so many swoony moments between the two. And some really sexy moments that I guarantee will make you swoon. The sex scene on the roof was DELCIOUS....it was so well written and it might not be super explicit but so provocative and sensual. Felicity Faircloth, you are not what I expected. " "You say that as though it is a compliment." "It is." "Will it still be one when I hit you square in the head with this candlestick?" But Felicity, she really packs a punch with this book, because she is a fighter and when she realizes what she wants for her life, and realizes she wants Devil and his rookery and his secretive life, she wants that too and fights for it and really proves to Devil that he is important even when she learns the truth about what he keeps from her. She ROCKS y'all, she just rocked this book so dang well and she makes the perfect match for Devil. I want to stay in your world. In the darkness. Beneath the stars.” Overall I found Wicked and the Wallflower to be a highly amusing romance that takes you from London's ballrooms to Covent Garden, to making love on rooftops, a lockpicking heroine, an underground king for a hero and a sensual love affair that defies scandal and danger. AN EMOTIONALLY CHARGED LOVE TALE!!!    

  21. 4 out of 5

    Stacee

    Well, I was in a weird mood slash slump sort of thing when I started this book and it was literally the perfect thing. I love love loved Felicity and Devil. She’s sassy and picks locks and he’s a marshmallow with a gruff exterior. They’re both so stubborn and have things in common and their banter is some of the best. The chemistry is off the charts and I absolutely adored all of the scenes of them together. Plot wise, it was fantastic. There was some push and pull and of course there’s the push Well, I was in a weird mood slash slump sort of thing when I started this book and it was literally the perfect thing. I love love loved Felicity and Devil. She’s sassy and picks locks and he’s a marshmallow with a gruff exterior. They’re both so stubborn and have things in common and their banter is some of the best. The chemistry is off the charts and I absolutely adored all of the scenes of them together. Plot wise, it was fantastic. There was some push and pull and of course there’s the push away because sacrifice, but it doesn’t last too long. The ending is perfection and the epilogue wasn’t enough because I wasn’t ready for it to be over. This will definitely be a book I reread. I’m seriously debating starting it all over again. I’ll just be over here waiting for the next book in the series. **Huge thanks to Avon Books for providing the arc free of charge**

  22. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    3.5 STARS Loved the story. And I am really looking forward to the rest of the series. The only reason that I didn't rate it higher is that I felt the writing was not up to SM's usual standards. I am a huge SM fan, and rate most of her books very high. But this time, I felt it was very repetitive. Too many overused metaphors, almost to the point of eye rolling. I liked the characters, and I really like the way the story is unfolding. Fingers crossed for Beast's book!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Bobs (Reader Unbound)

    Haven't read anything from Sarah Maclean in a while now, so I look forward to hopping back on that train! Also gave the book 5 stars, cause I saw it has a 1-star average rating. Come on people, its just not right to give a book a bad rating without even reading it?!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Laura the Highland Hussy

    Review posted on Got Fiction? Note: I read and reviewed this book over on A Little Bit Tart A Little Bit Sweet a couple weeks ago, and decided to review it here too. Their requirements is a little different from my normal style, so if you'd like to read it, it's linked. This review is more my style, but pretty much says all the same things.  Sarah MacLean has wrecked me. This book. THIS BOOK. I didn't even read the blurb on this one, because Sarah MacLean has never let me down. One of my favorite b Review posted on Got Fiction? Note: I read and reviewed this book over on A Little Bit Tart A Little Bit Sweet a couple weeks ago, and decided to review it here too. Their requirements is a little different from my normal style, so if you'd like to read it, it's linked. This review is more my style, but pretty much says all the same things.  Sarah MacLean has wrecked me. This book. THIS BOOK. I didn't even read the blurb on this one, because Sarah MacLean has never let me down. One of my favorite books of all time is Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake, and with that book, MacLean hooked me. Add that to the fact that I’m a sucker for a wallflower/bad boy romance, and it's my personal catnip. In Wicked and the Wallflower we see the heroine embarrassingly announce to a room full of the Ton’s biggest gossips that she has landed the reclusive Duke of Marwick. (spoiler alert: she hasn’t. In fact they’ve never met).  Felicity Faircloth (you might remember her from The Day of the Duchess ) is the daughter of an earl. She should have had a fairy tale life, and she almost did, yet she’s on the shelf. Not ruined, not completely, but it’s a close thing. She wants nothing more than to go back to being the belle of the ball. She wants her friends back, she wants her old life back. She tries not to think too hard about the fact that if her friends turned their backs on her, maybe they weren’t really friends to begin with. Growing as a character, she realizes that even once she’s accepted back into the fold, once again the belle of the ball, those “friends” are still awful people. She realizes not only are the people she’s been dying to get back to not worth her time, but she learns who she is, and who she wants to be. She’s 27, but finally figuring herself out. It’s a wonderful journey. Watching her go from shrinking wallflower to confident woman is so beautiful and satisfying. Enter Devil. He overhears her one night at a ball, and while he’s there to exact revenge against someone, he wonders if he can use her to do just that. He offers to help her land the duke she's just announced her engagement to. He lets her know he can make it happen, and while she doesn't believe him, he is able to deliver. Felicity is floored. Who is this man skulking about in the darkness, delivering her an engagement to the duke? He’s not a good man. Or so he would tell her. He offers her everything she wants: marriage to a duke, adoration, attention, the whole fairy tale, everything she thinks she wants. But as with every fairy tale, this comes at a price. Is she willing to pay? Devil is the bastard son of a duke, and so are his two brothers and sister. He had a hard life, and as a man he’s even harder. He’s a bastard both literally and figuratively, and I really loved him. Don’t mistake him for being hard on the outside, but a big softie on the inside, because he isn’t. He rules Covent Garden with an iron fist. But I think that’s why his fall is so much sweeter.  Watching him learn to love Felicity is his true strength. With Devil, a Bareknuckle Bastard of Covent Garden, as Felicity’s fairy godfather, she can have anything. Except Devil. And she wants him so very much. What I loved about this book, about these characters, is how much I don’t want to leave them. I finished the last page and was so sad there weren’t more. Her world is so fascinating and vivid. They feel real, they feel organic, and because they are so easy to relate to, you feel as if you are a part of their world. Devil and Felicity drew me into their lives so easily that the dark moments felt so realistic, and I’m not a crier but I bawled. Sarah MacLean’s talent lies in the emotion she evokes, and this book had me in knots. Each Sarah MacLean book is a promise. This book promises you a happy ending, of course, but it also promises to twist you inside out before you get there. It promises that you will not only love the characters, but you will feel as though you are in this book. You are one of her characters, and you won’t want to leave the world she’s created. A high-born lady and a base-born man is nothing new in Romancelandia. But what she does with them, where she takes you with this book, Reader, you’ve never read anything like it. She grips you from the first word, and she won’t let you go. Even once the book is closed, even once the words are read, they are still there, in your head, never letting you go. And you won’t want them to leave. You’ll want to stay in her world, in the vivid and richly colorful world she’s drawn you in to, and you will want more. You will always want more. And you will be in luck, because as soon as you read this, as soon as you close the book, you know you can pick up any one of her books and have these same feelings, these same desires, because her books promise you that. And I promise you that you will love this book. ***ARC courtesy of Avon Books

  25. 4 out of 5

    Yesy (The Book Vagrant)

    love love love!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Sher❤ The Fabulous BookLover

    2.5 Stars DNF @ 53% This was so overdone, over cooked and I’m just over it. The beginning had me so excited. It was thrilling, but it started to lose its appeal. The heroine annoyed me and the hero didn’t love up to his “devilish” ways. I definitely feel like the author tried to make it so dark and sensual that it started to become cheesy...and it sort of reminded me of the Maiden Lane series by Elizabeth Hoyt (Only EH can really pull off that dark storyline IMO). I am interested in the other char 2.5 Stars DNF @ 53% This was so overdone, over cooked and I’m just over it. The beginning had me so excited. It was thrilling, but it started to lose its appeal. The heroine annoyed me and the hero didn’t love up to his “devilish” ways. I definitely feel like the author tried to make it so dark and sensual that it started to become cheesy...and it sort of reminded me of the Maiden Lane series by Elizabeth Hoyt (Only EH can really pull off that dark storyline IMO). I am interested in the other characters though. The last book I enjoyed by SM was 11 Scandals to Start to Win a Dukes Heart. Maybe if I had more time and read this a few years ago I would’ve felt different. But for now I’m moving on...

  27. 5 out of 5

    Ginger

    3.5 stars! Wicked and the Wallflower is the first book in the new series The Bareknuckle Bastards by Sarah MacLean. I thought this was a good start to the series and the first book was well done. MacLean introduces us to three boys that were born on the same day by the same father, the Duke of Marwick who’s a terrible father and person. What are the odds on that but oh well, it's fiction and I'm here for the romance and smut! All three boys were bastards, and this is the tale of how they survived, 3.5 stars! Wicked and the Wallflower is the first book in the new series The Bareknuckle Bastards by Sarah MacLean. I thought this was a good start to the series and the first book was well done. MacLean introduces us to three boys that were born on the same day by the same father, the Duke of Marwick who’s a terrible father and person. What are the odds on that but oh well, it's fiction and I'm here for the romance and smut! All three boys were bastards, and this is the tale of how they survived, thrived or became lost. The first book is about Devon (his nickname is Devil) from stopping his brother, Ewan who got the title from their father in a rather brutal way. The pact with the brothers was that no one produced heirs for the line of Marwick to spite the father. But it seems Ewan has decided to break the deal and is looking for a wife. The girl that’s in the crosshairs for the marriage to the Duke of Marwick is Lady Felicity Faircloth and Devil ends up falling for her himself. I liked both characters of Felicity and Devil and thought this book had a decent plot. I was a bit confused in the beginning with the brothers and their past since MacLean didn’t really explain it that well. I stuck with the book and the back story was brought up slowly and I was finally able to understand all the dynamics of the family. I will continue with the series and I’m looking forward to the next book that follows Wit (his nickname is Beast) and his story. The romance and steamy factor in this book is well done! Recommended to historical romance lovers and anyone needing a happily ever after story!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Sara

    Once upon a time there was a princess trapped in a tower surrounded by a cruel and ruthless army of sniping jackals who took endless delight in reminding her that she would never escape, never be happy, never find anyone to bring her back to the glittering kingdom she once called home. They snarled that she was doomed to a life alone, rejected, a cast off, unworthy of notice. But the princess, far from willing to accept her fate, decided to make a deal with the Devil...a handsome, thrilling, dev Once upon a time there was a princess trapped in a tower surrounded by a cruel and ruthless army of sniping jackals who took endless delight in reminding her that she would never escape, never be happy, never find anyone to bring her back to the glittering kingdom she once called home. They snarled that she was doomed to a life alone, rejected, a cast off, unworthy of notice. But the princess, far from willing to accept her fate, decided to make a deal with the Devil...a handsome, thrilling, devil who promised her the world but soon learned that while this princess with her pink gowns and innocent eyes might look the part she was a far better wielder of fire and flame than any devil. I've been using way too many food metaphors in describing the romance novels that I enjoy most but I think there's a reason we equate food and sex so much. This book was DEE-LISH-US. Sarah MacLean's writing is fantastic, smart and quick but staying just shy of hopelessly quippy, exactly the way I like it. There's a great story here full of dark secrets and epic, epic romance. And while some mention is made of rescuing princesses there's nothing wilting about the so called "wallflower" Felicity Faircloth who's only nod to princessness is her predilection for pink petticoats. Say that five times fast ;) Then there's Devil (yes that's his name) the so called "wicked" miscreant and proud member of the Bare Knuckled Bastards (best name ever) who with the help of his brother and sister has built an ever so slightly criminal empire of fiercly loyal and well cared for smugglers. They may live in the disreputable Covent Garden but their patch is known as a safe haven where anyone willing to work hard will find good pay and good treatment for themselves and their families. He's the ultimate anti hero with a heart of gold. When Devil and Felicity first meet its by design. Devil is looking to mete out a particularly dark revenge on a figure from his past and Felicity is the key to exacting it. Felicity is looking for a way back into the high society that rejected her following a couple of insanely stupid scandals that have nonetheless relegated her and her family to the bottom rung. But it doesn't take more than a single moment for the spark to strike and for them both to realize that, regardless of what side of the tracks they're from, they are each others perfect, destined match. This book just hits all the right notes for me. Both characters are really, really well drawn. They're multilayered, interesting, passionate and fun to read. I gather its very usual in this type of romance to get a lot of chest pounding, brutish thugs who are always "rescuing" the lady and forbidding her from doing shit, or being very sarcastic and mocking in the way they deal with them. But Devil admires Felicity's wherewithal and bravery from the first moment, he's never met anyone like her and he can't believe she doesn't realize how amazing and valuable she is as a person just because she doesn't fit the perfect image of a ton debutante. For her part Felicity is totally overwhelmed by just how much she finds herself attracted to the darker world Devil inhabits, but its not because its dark or because all women love bad boys or something equally stupid, its because its a place where who she is has value. She's not just some commodity to be traded on the marriage market. Its a place where her intelligence and bravery and resourcefulness (and passion for lock picking) is admired rather than considered scandalous. Their romance is also delightfully, frustratingly gradual as they sort of circle around one another. Devil wrestles with his growing feelings for someone he only ever intended to use as a means to an end. Felicity struggles with seeing herself as Devil sees her and accepting that the things she really wants and feels are okay even if they mean leaving everything she's known behind. They seduce each other rather than Devil taking her in hand which is just so much more romantic and sexy. It also makes for some super hot reading to see them get closer and closer to each other only to pull back at the last second. MacLean writes a GREAT sex scene while managing to stay away from super graphic descriptions. It makes sense for a book set in this time period too. Her love scenes are way more cerebral than physical. I mean, yes, we find out whats happening with various body parts but its much more about what the characters are thinking and feeling. Its a true love story with the wonderful addition of great sex not the other way around. The story arc is definitely intriguing too though its here that I ran into the only thing that's keeping me from five stars. Clearly this is the first in a series and I'm happily planning to read them all but I'm troubled by my intense dislike for one of the characters who's going to be central to the final book. The Bare Knuckle Bastards and their sister are engaged in a kind of cold war with their estranged brother who is directly responsible for the hard life they've lived. Devil, his brother Beast (the hero of the second book), and the estranged brother Ewan are all the bastard sons of a Duke with no heir. Their sister Grace isn't actually their blood sister but she's the Duke's actual heir since she's the daughter of his wife and an unnamed lover. Confusing I know. Anyway Ewan fell obsessively in love with Grace (who apparently loved him back) but in the course of duking it out (sorry I had to) over the title (something the brothers and sister agreed they'd never do) Ewan betrayed everyone and the bastards ran off with Grace and have been hiding from him ever since. So its clear that Ewan and Grace's story will probably be the last one in the series. My issue is Ewan is a horrendous person. Like he's a homicidal psychopath and I'm going to need a really, really amazing reason for him to do have done what he's done. He throws out a bunch of phrases like "I will do anything for the woman I love" and "If I have to live without love so do you" and it all sounds insane and awful. I have never met a single woman in my life who would want to be loved like that. Its stifling and awful and frightening as hell. I don't want this lunatic anywhere near Grace and her insistence and agreement with her brothers on hiding from the guy for the last ten years suggests she feels the same way. I'm willing to wait to see how MacLean resolves this before casting any final judgments but as it stands now I'd prefer seeing Ewan six feet under rather than in Grace's arms. But for this tasty, tempting treat and its delightful couple I have nothing but love. Hie thee hence fans of bodice ripping debauchery and witty repartee to yon library and snap this up tout suite!

  29. 4 out of 5

    steph

    For the last few years I have picked up MacLean books and have put them down, disappointed. I cannot even remember the last book I've read of hers that I've even finished so I just figured that my enjoyment of Nine Rules to Break was a fluke. That this was not the author for me. So imagine my complete and utter surprise that when I started this book and realize I was actually really enjoying it. I completely fell for Felicity and even though sometimes Devil was a bit too "I am darkness and not g For the last few years I have picked up MacLean books and have put them down, disappointed. I cannot even remember the last book I've read of hers that I've even finished so I just figured that my enjoyment of Nine Rules to Break was a fluke. That this was not the author for me. So imagine my complete and utter surprise that when I started this book and realize I was actually really enjoying it. I completely fell for Felicity and even though sometimes Devil was a bit too "I am darkness and not good for you" to Felicity that made me want to roll my eyes, I still liked him. I think the backstory in this series is interesting and I cannot wait until we get to Grace's story (which I hope is also Ewan's). There are some parts in here that were a bit MUCH but it's a romance novel and I usually give those ones a bit more leeway than other genre's. 3.5 stars but I'm rounding up to 4 just because I'm excited a MacLean book works for me again.

  30. 5 out of 5

    (Tori-Smexybooks) smexys_sidekick

    Favorite Quote: “The darkness has always tempted her. The locks. The barriers. The Impossible.” Felicity Fairclot'sh fall from grace has left her and her family in a pickle. From her unfortunate discovery in a man’s bedchamber to her involvement with a married man, Felicity has lost her friends and her social standing, becoming yet another flower on the wall. When anger and pain have her telling a whopper of a lie, she finds herself a pawn in a dangerous game of revenge when she is forced to deal Favorite Quote: “The darkness has always tempted her. The locks. The barriers. The Impossible.” Felicity Fairclot'sh fall from grace has left her and her family in a pickle. From her unfortunate discovery in a man’s bedchamber to her involvement with a married man, Felicity has lost her friends and her social standing, becoming yet another flower on the wall. When anger and pain have her telling a whopper of a lie, she finds herself a pawn in a dangerous game of revenge when she is forced to deal with the devil for her sins. But Felicity has plans of her own and soon decides tis better to rule in Hell than to serve Heaven. Now she just needs to convince her devil of that. Once again Sarah MacLean crafts a delightful romance overflowing with laughter, adventure, intrigue and glorious sexual tension. Faithful readers will remember Felicity Faircloth from The Day of the Duchess (#3 in Scandals & Scoundrels series). Witty, intelligent, and quick on her feet, Felicity is a delight and I found myself utterly enchanted as she struggles to extract herself from yet another mess and is forced to deal with a man that not only understands her…but accepts her for who she is. She wants marriage and a family but only with love. The Devil himself (the illegitimate son of a Duke and the King of London’s underground) has a troubled past and it colors his perceptions of people and romance. His reputation is hard won and he wields it like a sword. His insults and slights towards Felicity are countermanded by his overwhelming need to protective her-especially from himself. “Lock this door behind me. You wouldn’t want a nefarious character coming in while you are asleep.” “Locks didn’t keep the first nefarious character out of my room tonight.” Sparkling chemistry sets off a game of wit between this strong-willed couple. It slowly burns only to blaze up as their attraction catches fire. The more time they spend together, their attraction for one another intensifies but Felicity must use all her skills to convince Devil they have a chance if he is willing to let go of his need for revenge. Emotions run high and the sexual tension is delicious as MacLean leads us towards the conclusion. A dynamic set of secondary characters help to elevate and push the romance. Devil’s backstory includes three other people whose stories will come in the future though MacLean does dole out clues, hinting at what is to come. Felicity’s relationship with her brother and mother is so much fun. You can feel their love for one another in their lively banter. “Oh, please. I told a tiny lie. […] Plenty of people have done far more outrageous things. It’s not as though I took up work in a bordello.” “A tiny lie? And you shouldn’t even know the world bordello.” “Really?” “Really.” “I suppose you think that it isn’t proper, me knowing the word bordello.” “I don’t think. And stop saying bordello.” The ending is predictable though the hero’s grovel and the heroine’s insistence on saving herself and her man left me clapping my hands in excitement. A short sweet epilogue lets us know how our couple and other characters are doing. Another sure-fire winner for MacLean. I am looking forward to the second book in this series-Brazen and the Beast-set to release June 25, 2019 Grade: A

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.