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384 pages, Mass Market Paperback
First published November 26, 2013
He was naked. In a bed that was not his own.His memory of the night before is completely gone. He cannot remember a single thing. Without a body, he cannot be convicted, but his name and his family name has been dragged through the mud. He may be a Duke in title, but he and his family's name is blacklisted. Society will never, ever accept him. He was sent into exile by his father. A promising young man with his life ahead of him, sent into the streets. He adopted the name Temple, he begins fighting as a boxer, and made his reputation as the Killer Duke. 12 years later, he has made his own fortune, but society will never forget that he is a killer. But then Mara appears, with a deal. She will clear her name.
And he was covered in blood.
She should tell him.Yes, the very fucking end, after which I will give you Ze Grand Reveal, which is as exciting a secret as the fact that I fart 15 times a day under my petticoats.
The whole story.
The money, the debt, the reason she’d run. She should lay herself at his feet and give him the chance to forgive her. To believe her. To believe in her.
“Do you regret your actions?”I'm so fucking sorry, I really am. I'm so sorry that due to society' false conviction of you as a killer (which was my fault in the first place), you were ostracized and branded the Killer Duke. I'm so sorry that I will equate the fact that I lived for 12 years, fucking scot-free fully in knowledge that I've destroyed an innocent man, because I TOTALLY KNOW HOW YOU FEEL.
She met his eyes. “Do you wish the truth? Or a platitude?”
“I understand that you are angry.”Yes, I am so fucking sorry. I am so sorry that I will extort money out of you in order for me to do what's right and prove to the world that you are innocent.
The words seemed to call to him, and he came toward her, glass still in hand, stalking her backward, across the too-small room. “You understand, do you?”
“You understand what it is to have lost my name?”
She did, rather. But she knew better than to say it.
He pressed on. “To have lost my title, my land, my life?”
“I shall tell the truth. Come forward with proof of my birth. And you shall forgive my brother’s debt. I think it’s a fair trade.”I am so fucking sorry for all the wrongs that I've done to you that I will threaten to escape once again, leaving you fully aware this time that I am alive, but knowing you cannot prove it unless I am here.
“A fair trade for destroying my life?”
“I disappeared once before. I can do it again."I am so very sorry for drugging you the night that I faked my death, leaving you covered in blood.
He interrupted her thoughts. “You drugged me!”I am ever so fucking sorry that I drugged you, so sorry that I will express my remorse by---DRUGGING YOU AGAIN.
“Goddammit!” he said, his glass falling from his hand as he lunged toward her, missing his mark, catching himself on the edge of the chair. “You did it...again...”
She was ringside and through the ropes in seconds, and the moment she stood there, in the uneven sawdust, the room began to quiet.Because of course, fighting me will completely fucking clear your bloody name in society. Why? Because if you beat me, you will be known as a fucking woman-beater. And if you let me win, you will be known in society as a boxer who fucking lost to a woman. I will let you have your revenge by putting you in a situation in which you cannot fucking possibly win.
She took a deep breath and spoke, letting her voice run loud and clear in the enormous room. “I, too, have a debt with The Fallen Angel, Duke. So tell me. Will you accept my challenge?”
Temple had been collateral damage.I will acknowledge my wrongdoing internally while doing everything possible to defy the man whom I have wronged. I am so sorry that I was a completely fucking stupid cunt.
“I never meant to hurt you.” She paused, her gaze flickering over his shoulder to the mirror where the women had watched the fight. “It never occurred to me that you would suffer.”I am so sorry that yet again, I will extort money out of you for making love to me.
He didn’t say anything. Didn’t have to. The idea that her actions would have no consequences for him was pure idiocy.
“I don’t care what your reasons are, or how well you’ve fabricated them. I am done. How much was this worth? This afternoon?”I'm so fucking sorry that I destroyed your life and stabbed you in the back that I will allow my brother to literally stab you.
The words were a blow. He couldn’t believe she would ask to be paid for.
The knife landed hard and deep in Temple’s chest, blood blooming from it like a perverse blossom.Some people are emotional vampires. They suck the happiness, the hope, the life out of everyone and everything they touch. Mara is one of them. She is a despicable excuse of a human being. She fills me with anger and hate. There was not a single moment in this book in which I felt a minute substance of sympathy for her. Mara does not deserve a happily ever after, and the fact that she gets one makes me sick to my stomach.
...her, with her pretty, soft hair and her strange, irresistible eyes and her strength beyond measure. Thoughts that did not make him question just why she had done what she’d done so many years ago.Strength beyond measure! Sure! She's got so much backbone, so much strength that she never shows it in any way besides living the kind of hard life that 95% of non-wealthy women live for the rest of their drudge-filled life. Never mind that she's not forced to be a whore, because really, it takes so much fucking strength to fucking run an orphanage. A fishmonger? A tailor? A maid? No such work for our fucking saint of a false speaker, Mara.
Temple shook his head. She hadn’t tried to kill him. He couldn’t believe it. He wouldn’t.Oh fucking Temple, fucking Temple, you fucking birdbrain. Take your fucking brain out of its penis, remove your fucking balls and hand it to Mara already, you fucking doormat. You fucking sorry excuse of a man.
He was beside her in an instant, collecting her in his arms, pulling her tight to him, and taking her lips. Claiming her in front of God and London. Tasting her sweetness. Her spice. The roar of those assembled faded away as he consumed her, the kiss too rough, too searing, until he realized that she was matching it with her own passion. Her own fervor.
It was strange that the word seemed to so suddenly define this man who was known to much of London as a brutal force, all unyielding muscle and indestructible bone.
But with her, he was somehow hard angles and soft touch.”
A rogue ruined . . .My review…
He is the Killer Duke, accused of murdering Mara Lowe on the eve of her wedding. With no memory of that fateful night, Temple has reigned over the darkest of London’s corners for twelve years, wealthy and powerful, but beyond redemption. Until one night, Mara resurfaces, offering the one thing he’s dreamed of . . . absolution.
A lady returned . . .
Mara planned never to return to the world from which she’d run, but when her brother falls deep into debt at Temple’s exclusive casino, she has no choice but to offer Temple a trade that ends in her returning to society and proving to the world what only she knows . . . that he is no killer.
A scandal revealed . . .
It’s a fine trade, until Temple realizes that the lady—and her past—are more than they seem. It will take every bit of his strength to resist the pull of this mysterious, maddening woman who seems willing to risk everything for honor . . . and to keep from putting himself on the line for love.
"He woke with a splitting head and a hard cock."Unfortunately, that was the most exciting bit in this book. It's not a bad book. Just blah.
He woke with a splitting head and a hard cock.
For a fleeting moment, she wondered how those fingers would feel on her own cheek. And then she realized she was vaguely jealous of a pig.
"Would you like it if I used my mouth?"
He swore, harsh and dangerous and she took the foul word as a yes, sliding back down the length of his body and considering the length of him ... wondering what might feel best.
"You're burned into me. I could be blind for the rest of my life, and I would still see you."
"Tell me," she shispered to the most private part of him. He did as he was told.
The instructions were scandalous, utterly improper. And all she wanted.
"Don't you see Ma(u)ra," He leaned in and whispered,
"You're mine now."
He froze. Absolution. How many times had the word whispered through his mind?