Synopsis: In the Wolf's Lair . . .
Determined to stop her wayward brother from squandering their dwindling fortune, Lady Eliza Brentford decides to follow him to his favorite den of depravity. There, among the candlelight and raucous revelry, she encounters her brother's role model in debauchery, the notorious Marquess of Haddan, Gryffin Dwight. Staring into his smoldering green eyes, Eliza can't help but find the rakehell nobleman seductively charming-and sinfully attractive.
In a Lover's Paradise . . .
When Gryffin appears on Eliza's estate as a guest of her brother, a stolen kiss among the garden's blooms leads to a night of unbridled passion. Suddenly the lovely widow feels herself opening up, like the petals of a rose. Could this master of seduction possibly feel true emotion for Eliza? Or is he leading her down the garden path to an Eden of delights no woman can resist-and a fall no woman can escape?
My Thoughts: This is the first book I've read by this author and I enjoyed it quite a bit. I thought her opening was interesting and it certainly engaged me but I don't think she was able to sustain that initial feel throughout the book. There were interesting parts and then lulls but there were enough of the entertaining parts that the book didn't lose my attention.
I enjoyed the characters also but think they could have been a bit more fleshed out. After a week they have faded in my mind so much that I only remember a shadow of who they were. I know she paints and he writes. I know she is in need of a knight in shining armor despite her plans to solve her own problems and I know he wanted to be that knight. I remember their actions but not their emotions.
The dialogue between the characters was entertaining and earned a few chuckles from me which is a definite plus. The mysterious element that was to add a bit of depth to the plot was a bit weak as we know who was up to nefarious acts even though we weren't exactly sure what those acts were. To tell the truth Gryff's friend Cam was far more mysterious and intriguing to me than anything. The wrapping up of the mystery/suspense seemed quite abrupt also.
Overall, the author did entertain me. Her main characters were not complete cookie cutters (Eliza is a widow which is fairly rare) and the secondary characters were intriguing. The ending was wrapped up too quickly and the I love Yous were borderline cheesy but I still did enjoy reading this book. Cara Elliott's writing style suited me quite a bit and I will definitely read more (especially Cam's story).
I'd be a bit remiss not to mention that my e-copy was provided by NetGalley for my review and it had multiple formatting issues. Often I'd come across a sentence thatwasnotspacedatallmakingitdifficulttoread. In addition the book would skip from one moment in time with one character to another character later on (or sometimes even the same character several hours later) with no indication that the time frame had changed. For example one paragraph would read that Eliza was pouring tea then the next paragraph would say that Gryff was talking to Cam. It wasn't because Gryff and Cam were with Eliza partaking in tea but because there were no natural or even unnatural breaks other than a chapter break. This often lead to some confusion on my part but it didn't effect my rating of this book. My rating is strictly on the story.