Review – Every Bit a Rogue by Adrienne Basso

About the Book:

When a young lady sacrifices her reputation to save a viscount, it’s the beginning of an extraordinary adventure in Adrienne Basso’s captivating Regency tale…

Jon Burwell, Viscount Kendall, knows what the gossips say about him. They claim he’s been a dejected, half-mad recluse ever since he was jilted at the altar. The simple truth is that Jon has thrown all the passion he once had for his fiancée into his latest mechanical invention. But his single-minded existence has lately been shattered by repeated encounters with Miss Emma Ellingham, his neighbor’s intriguing sister-in-law.

Painting and sketching have been Emma’s consolation since her own secret heartbreak. When she stumbles upon the viscount’s workshop, his machine revives her artistic imagination. The gentleman himself is even more fascinating—and deeply seductive. When Jon is accused of a crime, Emma risks her good name for his sake. But though the threat of scandal compels them to wed, only courage can overcome their pasts, and allow desire to transform into love.

Click on title below for direct Amazon buy link:                                                                                     Every Bit a Rogue (The Ellinghams)

My Review:

I received a complimentary copy of this book.

Jon Burwell, Viscount Kendall, is standing at the altar, eagerly waiting for his fiancée to make her trip down the aisle.  He finally receives word that she has run off with another man. Heartbroken, Jon retreats from society, and devotes his time to working on building a machine that will revolutionize farming.

Emma Ellingham lives with her sister and brother-in-law on the estate next to Jon’s.  Though she didn’t know Jon, she was present at his (almost) wedding, and felt such empathy for him, as she knows what it’s like to have your love not returned.  Emma was deeply in love with Sebastian, but when she told him so, he let her know that he loved her, but only as a friend or a sister.  Sebastian married someone else, and Emma seemed to lose her muse for painting.  She had been a very talented artist, but can’t find inspiration anymore.

About a year after Jon’s jilting, Emma stumbles upon the building where Jon is working on a threshing machine.  Finding the door unlocked, Emma goes in, and is immediately fascinated by the gears and intricacy of the machine.  Oddly, she feels compelled to draw it, something that has eluded her for years.  Jon is none too happy to find Emma in his building.  He has hopes to patent his invention once he’s finessed out the bugs, and secrecy is important.  Though Emma asks his permission to stay, Jon turns her down.

On another of Emma’s jaunts, she gets caught in a nasty storm, and is rescued by Jon.  They innocently seek shelter for the duration, sharing some surprisingly good conversation.  Eventually, when the weather clears, Emma steals away back home, eager that no one become aware of where she had been.  Though it would appear there are no repercussions from their spending sizable time alone together, Jon becomes the victim of a false accusation, with Emma as his only alibi.  Being a gentleman to the core, Jon does not mention that he was with Emma and couldn’t have committed the crime.

Emma’s conscience won’t let her stay silent, so she confesses that she was with Jon, who then immediately seeks her out with an offer of marriage.  Though Emma had thought never to marry, since she couldn’t have the man she loved, Jon wins her consent with his plea of friendship, fidelity, and creating a family.  Emma agrees, and they quickly marry.  Since they are both eager for a family, they share a physical relationship which turns out to be absolutely steamy and satisfying.  Their interactions out of the bedroom are also fun, honest, and warm.

I am so totally in love with EVERY BIT A ROGUE, as it has a bit of friends-to-lovers, friends with benefits, forced marriage, and second love.  Both Jon and Emma are wonderful characters who shared the experience of losing their first loves.  It took them time to realize that they actually were falling in love with each other, and were slowly letting go of the past.  They both had to confront their past loves in the flesh to come to realize what they have in the present.  This is my first experience in reading Adrienne Basso, and I’m so impressed with her writing.  EVERY BIT A ROGUE flowed beautifully, from the conversations, to the scenes of self discovery, to the passionate interludes.  This is actually the fourth book of the series, but it can easily be read on its own.  However, I will definitely be reading the rest, especially Sebastian’s story, as his appearance in this book really intrigued me.  I recommend EVERY BIT A ROGUE for all historical romance readers who enjoy a warm and steamy romance, particularly those who love to see deserving characters who once lost at love, strike gold the second time around.    ~Rose


    • I’m always thrilled to find a new (to me) author whose style I really like, and I adored this book! I see that she has a substantial backlist, too. Oh, boy, my TBR……


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