Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Devil to Pay (MacLachlan Family, #1)” as Want to Read:
The Devil to Pay (MacLachlan Family, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Devil to Pay (MacLachlan Family & Friends #1)

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  1,683 Ratings  ·  80 Reviews
Liz Carlyle, bestselling author of The Devil You Know and A Deal With the Devil, continues her devilish streak with this sensual regency romance.

By day, Sidonie Saint-Godard is a quietly elegant young widow who teaches deportment to the unpolished daughters of London's nouveau riche. By night, she is someone altogether different...

The notorious Black Angel—so called for he
ebook, 384 pages
Published January 1st 2005 by Pocket Books (first published December 28th 2004)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Devil to Pay, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Devil to Pay

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
I keep thinking that eventually I will read a Liz Carlyle book that just doesn't do it for me. Well this wasn't the one! I absolutely loved this book! Devellyn was just awesome. He was a big giant of a man, but he acted like a little lost puppy. He is so awkward and sweet.. but he is also thoughtless and selfish, but not when it comes to Sidonie. For example:

Sidonie,” he said, his voice strangely hoarse. “You are the most—I mean, you are so…I find you…ah, devil take it! Never mind!”

“I beg your
Mar 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have to admit I was lured into reading this by a single quoted exchange:

“Sidonie,” he said, his voice strangely hoarse. “You are the most—I mean, you are so…I find you…ah, devil take it! Never mind!”
“I beg your pardon?”
“Nothing,” he growled. “I misspoke. What did you say about oranges?”

I can't resist a Hero so bumblingly, gruffly dorky.

I loved the idea of the heroine leading the double life! She was a sort of cross between Robin Hood and Batman, a night-time vigilante set on avenging women ag
Mar 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Historical Romance; Characters w/Super-Hero Style Secret Identities
Reviewed for THC Reviews
I have no idea how I keep managing to allow so much time to pass between reading Liz Carlyle's book. Somewhere in the past three years, I squeezed in one of her novellas, but I was shocked to discover that it's been that long since I last read one of her full-length novels. I really need to stop doing that, because thus far, she's never failed to enchant me with her stories and The Devil to Pay was no exception. I absolutely loved this story of a seemingly proper widow wh
Mar 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was super cute and fun! My first Liz Carlyle book. The heroine, Sidonie, is a widow and thief (this is the second book this month I've read where the h is involved in illegal activity - the other one was The Perils of Pleasure (Pennyroyal Green, #1) by Julie Anne Long) Devellyn, the hero, is this big hunk of a man who has all sorts of problems with women and is estranged from his family. Sidonie and Devellyn also happen to be neighbors. I liked the way Ms. Carlyle revealed their background layer by layer. For example, Sidonie was married before and we ...more
Here's the thing: I don't list 1/5 of the historical romance novels I've read on my Kindle this year. Why? Because most of them are total crap. And chauvanist at that. And dumb. Whatever. This one was not Einstein material but I really enjoyed it. The plot was kinda dumb, but for some reason I really liked the characters, and that's all these books are about. The ending is improbable at best, but I consider these romance books akin to, say "Ninja Assassin". You don't go in expecting it to win an ...more
Devellyn isn't a happy man. Not only is he estranged from his family, (view spoiler) and as the icing on the cake he was robbed by the Black Angel and his humiliation is known all over London. He would feel better if only he could forget the pretty thief and stop lusting after her. And then he meets Sidonie, another woman that enchants him.

Sidonie is the Black Angel, trying to help women that were abused. Although a thief, she is honourable
Another good book from Ms. Carlyle. These things truly are like potato chips. Aleric was a sweetie who needed a lucky break for sure. The night the Black Angel stripped him, tied him up naked in bed and robbed him, he got his break, it just took awhile for him to realize it.

After all, he had been shunned by his father, been left by at least 10 mistresses, have wood eating beetles eat him out of his home, knock himself out at least twice by banging his head on the headboard while he was banging.
May 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved it! One of the best books I've read in a while. Strong character development and a lot of emotion. Liz Carlyle is a really good writer.

Can't quite give it 5 stars, since it lost a little steam at the end and the story's conclusion, while touching, wasn't as dramatic as it could've been after all the build-up. Still, I enjoyed it thoroughly and can't wait to start the next book in this series. 4.5 stars
Nov 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Where have you been all my life, The Devil to Pay?? I guess it's my own fault for not exploring Liz Carlyle's backlist more thoroughly, plus inexplicably this book has been absent from some of the "best romance" lists I've seen... This is easily one of the best books I've read this year, so enjoyable! I feel like starting a second read now so I can spend more time with the characters, not just hero/heroine but the whole supporting cast. Amazing.
Found this older Liz Carlyle book at the library, and figured I should read it so that I'm caught up on her series.

While I liked Sidonie -- she's kind and caring -- I never really bought the whole Black Angel disguise thing. I was never sure why she felt compelled to do this. She can't really articulate why she thinks it's a smart way to help poor women, so as a reader, I was never convinced about it either. It's apparent that she carries a grudge against rich men, but her robberies just seem ch
Altogether fantastic! Liz Carlyle certainly had her mojo working when she wrote this one. Charming, sexy, laugh-out-loud funny in places, great dialogue, great scene-setting, great characters. The hero Devellyn is Carlyle's answer to Lord of Scoundrels, and he is to die for! Sidonie is over-the-top wonderful, and her brother George Kemble, who appears in practically all of Carlyle's books, is one of the main characters in this one - not just as a brilliant valet, antiques dealer and "fixer", but ...more
The first half of this is great. The prologue was intriguing, quirky and set up the premise (Sidonie as Robin Hood) well. I loved Devellyn's character, too - it's such a relief to read about a hero who is not charming, debonair, and a natural with women. That doesn't make him unattractive, as he is self-aware and self-deprecating too. There's a real chemistry when they first meet, and again when they start getting to know one another.

The plot loses its way a little in the second half, and the en
4/4.5 stars - after initially thinking I wasn't going to like this, it was a very entertaining read. I loved the main characters and there was some intrigue about the story too. It was a little predictable but then again, most romances are! Glad I read this one.
Devellyn is one of the more interesting historical heroes I've come across. He's got this brutal/ruthless streak in him but somehow he's also the guy who lets half a dozen mistresses just run roughshod over his life while he barely bats an eye.
Nov 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
loved it..At the beginning i thought this book was not for me but then i was completely hooked..
Jul 31, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
So rapey and weird and I couldn't emotionally connect to the characters at all.
Debbie Dodd
I enjoyed reading.
Bell Curran
This was refreshing after having just read a few historical romances that were weighed down with emoting that was as excessive as it was implausible.

With lots of one-sentence paragraphs to punctuate the drama.

As in,

"She trembled in his arms. As Lord HawkSilverRakehell caressed the slick folds of her feminine desire, she knew that no one could touch her the way he did.

"It was as if he touched the core of her soul."

Liz Carlyle avoids that. She doesn't need to use one-sentence paragraphs to conve
Ermione Pickwick


The last pages are wonderful. The rest is a bit slow if you ask me. However, it's a lovely romance.
Oleta Blaylock
Mar 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book begins a new arc and ends another. Our hero is Aleric Hilliard, Marquess Devellyn. Aleric is a disreputable rake that is beginning to find his life missing something. I think that the first time he meets Ruby Black a/k/a Sidone Saint-Godard pushes in the direction of redemption. While some of what Aleric does as far as Ruby is concerned is questionable he is so confused by what is happening to him I don’t think that he realizes what he is doing. He has lived with guilt and anger so lon ...more
Better than expected. The writing is witty in places and there appears to be the scratchings of a plot outside of the hero/heroine getting together.

The plot is similar to the plot description of Connie Brockaway's "All Through The Night", which I have not read. But no more so than I'd say Laurie McBain's Moonrise Madness. There is trope - where the woman is a sort of Robin Hood character by night and a lady or widow by day. It's rare, but if you scrounge a bit you can find it. Most romance novel
Lucy Qhuay

One of the things that most makes me sad is when a book doesn't live up to its potential and The Devil To Pay was one perfect example of this situation.

Sidonie Saint-Godard is a polite, charming, elegant young widow who makes her living teaching the daughters of London's nouveau riche.
But Sidonie has a secret. She is the infamous Black Angel, a Robin Hoodesque figure who stalks the night, preying on the men who exploit the weak, taking what she can from them and then giving everything to those w
As I've previously said with other historical-romances, this one was a surprisingly good read. I didn't expect to get pulled into this story and its characters as much as I did. Perhaps that's why I enjoy reading them so much.

Dev is such a tortured soul. He is self-depreciating, sarcastic, confident but still unsure of himself, and ultimately a sweetheart. Sid is brave, stubborn, sensual but still prim, and ultimately an avenging angel. Her want--no need--to help those who are trapped was an adm
May 06, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Liz Carlyle writes really well and in a style I find enjoyable; however, her stories always fall flat. Carlyle can craft a beautiful sentence, just not a good book.

This is my Carlyle pattern: Pick up a book and barely recognize the name. Start the book and just ooh and ah over the writing style. Ask myself, “Self, why haven’t you read more Liz Carlyle?” Read about 1/3 of the book, completely lose interest in the story, and remember why I don’t read more Liz Carlyle. Begrudgingly finish the rest
Carlyle is a hit-or-miss author for me, but when she is on, she is really on. And she is really on here. Our heroine, Sidonie, is a seemingly respectable widow who moonlights as Black Angel, a daring vigilante who humiliates and robs upperclass men who mistreat women (and the money she gets goes to the women's help). Our hero, Devellin (yes, that's his name. Oh well, it's romancenovelland), is an aristocrat who is busily trying to drink/gamble/etc himself to death because he cannot deal with a n ...more
Jul 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sidonie and her brother George are half-French,illegitimate children of the late Duke of Gravenel.She is a widow at 29,teaching deportment to young ladies and chaperoning them.
Sidonie has a secret identity: The Black Angel/ Ruby Black- a notorius Robin Hood-like thief.
George has changed his name to Kemble (saw it in a theatre bill),became a man of trade.
Sidonie meets Aleric, the Marquess of Devellyn, and robs him.Aleric is estranged from his father,the current Duke (which Sidonie doesn't know).
May 27, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Historical Romance Fans
#3 Devil trilogy - Historical Romance

From Book Cover:

By day, Sidonie is a quietly elegant young widow who teaches deportment to the unpolished daughters of London's nouveau riche. By night she's the notorious Black Angel -- so called for her scandalously located angel tattoo.

The Black Angel takes from powerful men who explot and gives to those who suffer at their hands. Her identity is a mystery.

The Marquess of Devellyn, one of the least noble noblemen in town, uses and discards women as he plea
Jul 08, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
Ahh Google, what would I do without you. Ah man, even reading that summary makes me want to puke. Seriously, I picked this one up on the name of the author and simply because it had the word Devil in it. It took me a fair few days to get through this novel and it's not one I really enjoyed. Simply put, Gentlemen around town are sudden being beseiged by a beautiful is vengeful Black Angel. The temptress seduces, steals and vanishes into thin air. CUE THE HERO!

The Duke of Devil street becomes a v
C Joy
Another Liz Carlyle book I enjoyed. I loved the idea of Sidonie (heroine) leading a double life, like a female Robin Hood with her original ways. Known to few as the mysterious "Black Angel", things got more interesting when she stumbled with Devellyn, and when he swore he'll get back at her. The plot thickens when Sidonie met with Devellyn as her original self since they were neighbors. There was a lot of tension until truth was revealed. The love scenes were definitely sizzling and passionate, ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
  • Tempted At Midnight (Mayhem in Mayfair, #4)
  • The Black Diamond (Black Diamond, #2)
  • One Wicked Sin (The Scandalous Women of the Ton, #2)
  • Not Quite a Lady (Carsington Brothers, #4)
  • All Through the Night (Royal Agents #2)
  • The Bride Price
  • The Seducer (Seducers #1)
  • Highland Rogue, London Miss
  • How to Propose to a Prince (Royle Sisters, #3)
  • To Love a Thief
  • Simon Says (Friends and Lovers, #2)
  • As You Wish (Time of Transition, #2)
  • My Lord and Spymaster (Spymasters, #2)
  • Lessons From a Scarlet Lady (Northfield, #1)
  • Revealed (The Blue Raven, #1)
  • More Than a Mistress (Mistress Trilogy #1)
  • Instructing Adam
Dear Readers,

The awful truth about novelists is that we are mostly dull, introverted homebodies who only write in order to live our fantasies vicariously. I came to writing rather late in life, and I’m still amazed I can get paid for doing something I love, and that I get to stay home while I do it.

My favorite comedian Steve Martin once said, "I believe entertainment can aspire to be art, and ca
More about Liz Carlyle...

Other Books in the Series

MacLachlan Family & Friends (10 books)
  • One Little Sin (MacLachlan Family, #2)
  • Two Little Lies (MacLachlan Family, #3)
  • Three Little Secrets (MacLachlan Family, #4)
  • One Touch of Scandal (Fraternitas Aureae Crucis, #1)
  • The Bride Wore Scarlet (Fraternitas Aureae Crucis, #2)
  • The Bride Wore Pearls (Fraternitas Aureae Crucis, #3)
  • A Bride by Moonlight (Fraternitas Aureae Crucis, #4)
  • In Love with a Wicked Man
  • The Earl's Mistress (MacLachlan Family & Friends, #10)

Romance Deals

  • Wynn in Doubt
    $3.99 $0.99
  • Until Harry
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Lethal Consequences (Aegis Security, #2)
    $4.49 $1.99
  • Things I Should Have Known
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Waiting for the One
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Bombshell (Hollywood A-List, #1)
    $3.99 $2.00
  • Guardians Of Stone (Relic Seekers, #1)
    $4.49 $1.99
  • All the Secrets We Keep (Quarry Road, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Queens of Geek
    $7.80 $2.99
  • Consumed by Fire (Fire, #1)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Off the Record (Record, #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • The Lovely Reckless
    $7.80 $2.99
  • Never Kiss a Rake (Scandal at the House of Russell, #1)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Enslaved by the Ocean (Criminals of the Ocean, #1)
    $3.99 $0.99
  • Plain Perfect (A Daughters of the Promise Novel)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Love Fortunes and Other Disasters
    $7.09 $2.99
  • On the Record (Record, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Crash (Crash, #1)
    $4.49 $1.99
  • The Journey Home
    $3.99 $0.99
  • True to the Highlander (Loch Moigh #1)
    $4.99 $2.00
  • Losing Control (Kerr Chronicles, #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • The CEO Buys In (Wager of Hearts, #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Love, Lies & Spies
    $7.80 $2.99
  • Faking It
    $3.99 $1.99
  • 'Til the End of Time: A Loveswept Contemporary Classic Romance (Sedikhan)
    $4.99 $0.99
  • Where Darkness Lies (Criminals of the Ocean, #2)
    $3.99 $0.99
  • Good Girl (Love Unexpectedly, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Immortally Yours (Argeneau #26)
    $6.99 $1.99
  • The Immortal Collection
    $3.99 $0.99
  • Unspoken (The Vampire Diaries: The Salvation, # 2)
    $3.99 $0.99
  • Golden Surrender (Viking #1)
    $7.99 $1.99
  • Beautifully Forgotten (Beautifully Damaged, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Been Here All Along
    $7.09 $2.99
  • Blue Lines (Assassins, #5)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Honor Bound
    $3.99 $1.99
  • The Way to Game the Walk of Shame
    $7.09 $2.99
  • One Pink Line
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Redemption (Penton Legacy, #1)
    $4.49 $1.99
  • Promise Me
    $3.99 $0.99
  • The Wedding Pearls
    $4.99 $2.00
  • For Every Solution, A Problem
    $3.99 $0.99
  • Friction
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Fountain Of Secrets (Relic Seekers, #2)
    $4.49 $1.99
  • Royal Affair (Royals in Exile, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Through the Smoke
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Finding Bliss
    $4.99 $0.99
  • Frozen
    $4.99 $1.99
  • She Has Your Eyes
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Cuffed by His Charm (Dirty Little Secrets, #4)
    $4.99 $1.99
“Sidonie,” he said, his voice strangely hoarse. “You are the most—I mean, you are so…I find you…ah, devil take it! Never mind!”

“I beg your pardon?”

“Nothing,” he growled. “I misspoke. What did you say about oranges?”
“The truth is, Sidonie, I don’t fare well with women.” He spoke coolly, and without looking at her. “It is my own fault, of course. I…I neglect them. I forget where I’m supposed to be, and when I’m supposed to be there. I’m irresponsible. I drink to excess, gamble to excess, and sometimes I brawl. I never remember special occasions. And I very often go to sleep before they’ve…well, never mind that.” Devellyn fell silent for a moment. “And I cheat on them,” he quietly added. “Dreadfully. Did I mention that?”

“You did not,” she answered. “But a full disclosure of one’s fidelity, or even one’s skill in the bedroom, is not, strictly speaking, necessary before having dinner with someone.”

Devellyn smiled down at her a little wearily. “Ah, Sid, I have no charm at all, have I?” he said almost regretfully.”
More quotes…