Monday, November 7, 2022

Never Rescue a Rogue - Review

Never Rescue a Rogue (The Merriwell Sisters, # 2)

By: Virginia Heath

Expected Publication: November 8th 2022 by St. Martin's Griffin

368 pages

Genre: Adult, Historical Fiction, Regency, Romance

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (Thank you!!)

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Goodreads description--Virginia Heath’s Never Rescue a Rogue, the next book in the Merriwell Sisters series, is filled with whip-smart banter, swoony romance, hilarious mishaps, and twisty reveals that will make you gasp and laugh in delight.

Diana Merriwell and Giles Sinclair only tolerate one another for the sake of their nearest and dearest. Everyone believes that the two of them are meant to be together, but Diana and Giles know that their constant pithy barbs come from a shared disdain—not a hidden attraction. Diana loves the freedom of working at the newspaper too much to give it up for marriage, and Giles is happily married to his bachelor lifestyle. But they do have one thing in common—the secrets they can’t risk escaping.

When Giles’ father, the curmudgeonly Duke of Harpenden unexpectedly turns up his toes, it’s only a matter of time before someone comes crawling out of the woodwork who knows the true circumstances of his only son's birth. As the threat of blackmail becomes real, Giles must uncover the truth of his parentage first, or else he and all those who depend upon him will be ruined—and dogged bloodhound Diana is his best hope at sniffing out the truth. As Giles and Diana dive into his family’s past, the attraction that the two of them insisted wasn’t there proves impossible to ignore. Soon, the future of the Sinclair estate isn’t the only thing on the line…

One of the best things about Giles and Diana from Never Fall for Your Fiance was their banter. Diana was quick to call Giles out on his reputation, and Giles wasn't just going to sit and take it. And unfortunately, Never Rescue a Rogue pretty much skipped to where Giles and Diana have come to a mutual understanding of the other being a part of their lives. They've even made it far enough in their relationship to already have regard for each other. So I felt like we missed some of the best opportunities that come with an enemies-to-lovers story.

The first time I read a book where the scoundrel turned out to have a reason for his reputation I thought it was super clever. And then I read another story and another story. And now the idea isn't as original as it once was for me. Yet, I've also read more than one story where the rake was truly uninterested in his reputation or a lady's before where the story begins. Giles was somewhere in the middle of these two. Giles has a reason for keeping distance between himself and eligible single ladies who are pursuing a husband. Yet he also is not innocent.

Diana is sassy and determined to follow her dreams. Husbands and men, in general, tend to let you down and try to control you. Or at least that's her experience with them up until her sister Minerva marries Hugh. And Giles doesn't easily fit into the category that Diana once assigned him. No matter what, she isn't interested in giving up her career or her freedom. She took much longer to come around to the idea of a relationship with Giles.

The mystery these two set out to solve was interesting and not entirely predictable while also not being entirely unfathomable either. As always, the mysteries/story always takes a backseat to the relationships in my preferences. Never Rescue a Rogue straddled the fence of being both relationship and story-driven.

A small pet peeve is that Giles and Diana ultimately followed the exact journey in their relationship that Hugh and Minerva did. I don't see why these two couldn't have forged a slightly different path. I suppose that would require too much time in the storytelling to get two people properly married before they could get to the physical stuff since I guess Virginia Heath is more of a romance writer? I'm guessing there. Just a smallish pet peeve. I don't remember there being an abundance of physical descriptions, but I'm writing this review exactly one month after finishing the book so my memory isn't the best.

Favorite quotes:

-"You continue to linger on the periphery of my life like a bad smell."

-"One of those teas is for drinking and the other is for dunking." To prove that, he picked up a shortbread finger and plunged it into Diana's cup. "That way, all the dunking sludge remains in this cup while the other is sludge-free. Don't you just hate a chewy beverage?

I had another favorite quote but it was long and spoilerish. Anyway, Never Rescue a Rogue was such an enjoyable book. I do think there was a missed opportunity with Giles and Diana being on much more friendly terms when the story started than I expected. We still get some funny quips, but most of the hatred-to-friends piece has already taken place before this book began. I enjoyed the mystery, but I always enjoy the relationship even more. Overall, I really liked Never Rescue a Rogue, but I think my expectations might have been a smidgen too high. Either way, Never Rescue a Rogue gets 4 Stars. And I'm looking forward to book 3. Have you read Never Rescue a Rogue? What did you think? Let me know!

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