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Monday, May 11, 2015

5*Review & Giveaway! The Harlot Countess by @JoannaShupe @TastyBookTours

The Harlot Countess
Wicked Deceptions # 2
By: Joanna Shupe
Releasing April 28th, 2015
Goodreads Series Link


Lady Hawkins’s debut was something she’d rather forget—along with her first marriage. Today, the political cartoonist is a new woman. A thoroughly modern woman. So much so that her clamoring public believes she’s a man…
FACT:  Drawing under a male pseudonym, Maggie is known as Lemarc. Her (his!) favorite object of ridicule: Simon Barrett, Earl of Winchester. He’s a rising star in Parliament—and a former confidant and love interest of Maggie’s who believed a rumor that vexes her to this day.
FICTION:  Maggie is the Half-Irish Harlot who seduced her best friend’s husband on the eve of their wedding. She is to be feared and loathed as she will lift her skirts for anything in breeches.
Still crushed by Simon’s betrayal, Maggie has no intention of letting the ton crush her as well. In fact, Lemarc’s cartoons have made Simon a laughingstock…but now it appears that Maggie may have been wrong about what happened years ago, and that Simon has been secretly yearning for her since…forever. Could it be that the heart is mightier than the pen and the sword after all?

Buy Links:  Amazon | B & N | iTunes | Kobo | Publisher

Review- 5 Stars
I don’t know how a book can be cute and hot at the same time, but holy cow, Laureline Page and Katie McGee know what the hell they are doing! This book is incredibly fun, I loved every minute of it! They’ve put their own little twist on a story line that’s been done and made it unique, almost exclusively because of the characters. They will suck you right into their world.
            Blake is one of the most complex heroes I’ve come across and he is so different, I was just entranced by him. He’s got the sexy alpha thing going for him, definitely. Then of course there is the sweet, cuddly side, while throwing in the hidden nerd and a little insecurity. I suppose there have been guys like this in other romance novels, but Blake ties it all up in a bow with his absolute naiveté. There were times when he was just so bewildered by the things he was feeling and things that Andrea called him out on. She gets mad at him for something and he is surprised because it wasn’t that he was being a jerk on purpose, he doesn’t know any better and can’t figure out why other people aren’t thinking like he is. It’s freaking adorable. He is sex on a stick for sure, but the whole package is what makes you fall for Blake.
            Andrea is a spitfire. Her attitude is pretty hilarious at times, and at others it made roll my eyes in exasperation. She clearly has a huge heart and incredible capacity for love, shown especially in her relationship with her sister. However, it was actually pretty refreshing to see her first reaction to Blake. She didn’t accept his assholery just because she was insanely attracted to him. She was willing to walk away from a person she didn’t believe had any decency, despite the money and his sexy ass. That was such a huge plus for her as a character. I respected her and as well as enjoying her sarcasm and wit. It takes a little while for her to be more open minded about Blake, but I truly believe that is because she sees some of her old self in him.
            The banter between these two is fabulous. They both have a sarcastic wit that is sharp and funny. However, they can also be silly and with a really bright mood to the scene that just put a smile on my face. I hated for the book to end, but I really, really wanted to see Andrea and Blake get their HEA.
            If you are looking for a really solid, great book that will make you laugh and smile, and just leave you generally warm and fuzzy, look no further! This is one of those books that I’ll return to when I need a ‘pick me up.’ 5 truly excellent stars!

The Harlot Countess 5 Stars
            Another great historical romance by Joanna Shupe!  While this book can be read as a standalone, it is certainly a lot of fun to read the series.
            We first met Simon in the Courtesan Duchess. He is honest, loyal, compassionate, and a little bit tortured by something in his past. In The Harlot Countess, the reader learns that Simon lost the love of his life to a scandal ten years before. And, while he believes that he was played the fool, he is not closed off to love and it speaks highly of his character that he appreciates and encourages it in the lives of his friends and family. He is witty, intelligent, incredibly handsome, and goes above and beyond to help the less fortunate. Not to mention the political capital he has built in parliament.
So what is wrong with him? When presented with evidence that the woman he loved had been having relationships with other men, he did not seek her out for an explanation, but rather he shunned her with the rest of society. Now, he is still bitter over what he perceived as being played the fool, however he is still very attracted to her. To make matters worse, he has been targeted by a cartoonist who is clearly determined to take away his credibility and make him a laughing stock.
Maggie was completely shattered when Simon turned on her without giving her the opportunity to refute the claims against her. To save even the slightest bit of dignity and avoid completely tainting her family, she quickly married. Her marriage was empty and boring, but it gave her something she never would have had otherwise, freedom. She spent her years honing her craft as an artist, and creating a persona meant to show people that they cannot hurt her anymore.
Maggie is talented, sarcastic, funny, full of compassion, desperate to help the less fortunate, and yet so very bitter (not without cause). So when Simon enters her life again, she has no faith in him and is, in fact, the artist behind the derogatory cartoons. Finding their way back to each other is full of hurdles, the hurt and anger, the misunderstandings, and society in general are stacked against them. To top it off, there is a mad man to chase, keeping Maggie’s other identity a secret so that she doesn’t incur the wrath of the government, and a personal vendetta that is causing them problems.
This story definitely keeps moving, there were no moments when I wished it would pick or where I was getting bored. The plot is wonderfully constructed, it’s easy to follow, but still full of surprises. It’s so easy to fall in love with Simon. SO EASY! He is adorable and a sexy alpha at the same time. Maggie’s bitterness gave me moments of annoyance, however it is well deserved, so it was fleeting. As characters, they are well developed and I felt like I really got to know them. Just as the previous book got interest piqued to read Simon’s story, this book has me very excited for Quint’s novel.
I really enjoyed this book and when I reached the ending, I shut the book with a smile on my face. This is worth the read!
Author Info
Displaying Joanna Shupe.jpgAward-winning author JOANNA SHUPE has always loved history, ever since she saw her first Schoolhouse Rock cartoon. While in college, Joanna read every romance she could get her hands on and soon started crafting her own racy historical novels. She now lives in New Jersey with her two spirited daughters and dashing husband.

Author Links:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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