I said once before on this blog that, after reading one of her novels with a jerk for a romantic lead, I was not interested in Sarah Maclean romances. Of course, nothing is ever absolute.
I decided to give it one more go with Wicked and the Wallflower, and I can say that I was pleasantly surprised. When Devil (again another ridiculous name) reluctantly falls in love with Felicity Faircloth (which had to be said in full every time, again annoying), the chemistry between them worked well. I don't understand how a prim and proper lady decides that, if she doesn't fit into high society she might as well be a criminal, but the attraction that Devil feels for her and his sense of not being good enough to be with her was compelling. The steamy scenes were better in this iteration as well, without the pretext of Devil being a total expert in women's bodies and looking to show off more than anything, which is what I got out of the last book's rake.
The lesson here: there are still some elements in Maclean's writing that make no sense, and even rise to the level of being irritating. Making a cohesive world is something I find done much more successfully in Tessa Dare's novels. But, even provided with a male character that isn't cruel, the romance can work.
I suppose I just have to be really choosy with this author. Which, honestly- when you're reading a romance novel as a quick jaunt in between epic fantasy series, who wants to have to think that hard about this?
K. Rating: 3.5/5