I had high hopes for this book. Gaelen Foley really wow'ed me with the last installment in The Inferno Club series, but this one just didn't have the same effect. It felt really slow moving at first and the "issue" between our hero and heroine felt overblown and not nearly strong enough to justify the angst that ensued. The pace picked up in the second half, but I was never really bowled over by the romance.
We saw the groundwork for a relationship between Carissa and Beau in My Ruthless Prince. Essentially, Carissa is a gossip. We come to learn it's because she has a secret of her own that she wants to ride herd over. She isn't a virgin. And the cad who took her virginity blackmailed her family into keeping her secret.
Beau has secrets of his own. None have to do with sex --everyone knows he gets around. His big secret is that he is a spy. Unfortunately, Carissa stumbles over that secret and the only way he can think of to make sure she keeps her mouth shut, is to make her his wife. Of course, there was already an attraction between these two, so the spy-secret was really just a convenient way for them to get together.
Beau is in trouble with the local government, which is looking into allegations that the Order has gone too far in its pursuit of Prometheus. There are sinister forces afoot that want to ruin Beau and his brethren. Carissa takes it upon herself to "help," which at times does more harm than good. This storyline was much more interesting than the romance, in my opinion.
The trouble in paradise stems from the fact that Carissa hides her non-virgin status from her husband. She keeps it to herself because she is afraid he'll leave her. He hides the fact that he knows the truth because he wants her to tell him on his own. Not much of conflict, especially since these two are so clearly crazy about each other. And kind of hard to take seriously, since Beau was a giant man whore with plenty of Order secrets of his own.
The wasn't bad, but it was slow at times and it was difficult to emotionally invest in a couple that felt like it had a pitiful problem.
On the plus side, we get a fitting ending for the men of the Inferno Club. The conclusion doesn't just feel like the end of Beau's chapter, but a last hurrah for everyone. The heroes and heroines from the previous books all return and we see their futures before the story is over. I just wish the love story here had been a bit stronger.
Rating: C+*ARC Provided by Avon