Review: ALL NIGHT WITH A ROGUE by Alexandra Hawkins

Review: ALL NIGHT WITH A ROGUE by Alexandra Hawkins

Releases February 2, 2010

Seduce Lady Juliana Ivers and then cast her aside: Those are his sister’s instructions. Alexius Braverton, Marquess of Sinclair—known as Sin to the ton—is happy enough to oblige, especially when he catches a glimpse of his target. Juliana is completely unlike the empty-headed chits who barely hold his attention for a week. A true gentleman would leave her to find a worthy suitor. But then, a Lord of Vice would never claim to be a gentleman.

Juliana is expected to marry well to improve her family’s finances, even if she secretly longs to make a living through her musical compositions. A dalliance can only complicate matters, though not even practical Juliana can help succumbing to the aptly named Sin. But one unforgettable night will draw her into a scandalous affair—and a seduction begun as sport will soon become deliciously, dangerously real…

Genre: Historical Romance

Cover Thoughts: I love this cover. So beautiful. So sensual. And once again, a cover that resembles the story within for the woman's pearls are a key element of both eroticism and pain. That's a killer combo right there. ;)

Single Title/Series: ALL NIGHT WITH A ROGUE is book one in the loosely-tied Lords of Vice series but can easily be read as a stand alone.

Why I Read It: I was initially ensnared by the first chapter excerpt and if I hadn't already been offered a review copy by the author, I would have purchased one for myself upon release day.

My Review:

Alexius "Sin" Sinclair is a man of vice and debauchery. His trademark: A pearl necklace that decorates the necks of many prestigious ladies of the ton. He's also bored, jaded beyond repair with the only solace being his club and its members, The Lords of Vice. Together, these titled "gentlemen" brood and drink whilst bawdy prostitutes parade and hawk their wares. But the mundane nuances of Sin's life is soon shakend by the beautiful Juliana Ivers when in the midst of a naughty tryst with the married Lady Lettlecott, Sin glimpses the beguiling girl high in a hazel tree watching with fearful curiosity.

Juliana, the beauty in her family, is not looking for a husband while in London. Instead, she's secretly looking for a way to publish her music. But unbeknownst to the innocent Juliana is that her pursuit has garnered the attention of Lord Kyd and thus spikes the resentment of a very dangerous foe. Despite the fact that Juliana's acquaintance with Lord Kyd is a harmless business adventure, Juliana has roused the petty jealousy of a very powerful woman that has the means to destroy her reputation with a very seductive weapon.

Reminiscent of CRUEL INTENTIONS, Sin's deranged half-sister convinces him that the beautifully innocent Juliana is attempting to steal Lord Kyd's affections with marriage in mind. Saddened and petulant over what she feels is a complete offense on Juliana's part, she manipulates Sin into agreeing to seduce Juliana and then publicly discard her. Feeling protective of his half-sister, Sin is compelled to do as she bids and embarks on his seduction of Juliana.

Forgetting Sin's half-sister's request for a moment, it was odd to read of a rakish hero specifically pursuing a woman like Juliana. In my general reading experience, most historical heroes shudder at the thought of dallying with a virgin miss on the marriage mart. For one, if they get caught stealing the goods, whether it be consensual or not, the consequence is marriage especially if said innocent has a very powerful protector. Even if the innocent is lacking a protector, most jaded men such as Sin find a virgin boring so it was unconventional to say the least that Sin pursues Juliana not only at his half-sister's bidding, but for his own amusement as well. Even more shocking, Juliana is not adverse to the idea.

Juliana was a befuddling character. Her ultimate desire is to publish music but the emphasis on this pursuit wasn't to a degree that the reader would believe her capable of completely shunning the idea of marriage. In fact, there really isn't a time that she proclaims that she'll never get married but the reader is supposed to believe that this is why she allows Sin's seduction. In essence, Julianna risked ruination not only by associating with Sin but by allowing him to take her virginity with very little to gain nor even for a really good reason other than attraction. In a day and age where even a whisper of nefarious actions would taint a girl and her family beyond repair, I was surprised to read of a heroine like Juliana risking her sisters' chances at marriage for a tumble in the sheets.

Sin, in the first hundred pages, ranked a bit on the sleazy side for me. The things he said and did had me giggling or thinking "yuck". In addition, Juliana seemed an easy conquest for it took very little effort on Sin's part to convince her to allow his demanding touch. But despite these early mishaps, Sin's falling in love with Juliana was very sweet. The whole notion of not knowing what you have until its gone was very much in evidence with Sin's fall leading to one of the best scenes in the book. After a horrific family bet forces Juliana to the side of another man, Sin, having not been apprised of the situation, is outraged that she's left him and his emotion was absolutely palpable. I also thought that Sin righted the terrible wrongs he committed towards Juliana when he first treated her as just another one of his conquests. He does pay dearly for this initial callous treatment in more ways than one and his inevitable atonement was beautiful.

It was obvious from the writing that Alexandra Hawkins is an author that knows and understands romance. Given that, it was surprising to read a novel, debut or not, where the romance felt a bit hurried resulting in Sin's sleaziness and Juliana being a bit easy. This may have been because the external plot points needed extra page dedication, but the novel, in my opinion, would have benefited from more pages dedicated to Sin's and Juliana's romance. If the romance between the H/h had been more developed, then I believe that ALL NIGHT WITH A ROGUE could have been a great read rather than merely okay. That being said, I'm definitely going to pick up whatever Ms. Hawkins delivers next.

ALL NIGHT WITH A ROGUE is a novel that will more than appeal to readers who enjoy their historical fare on the steamier side. Plus, the six other Lords of Vice are just as broodingly-rakish as Sin, thus promising that more steamy books are to come.

C+

14 comments:

Sophie Renwick said...

What a great review! I've got this one ordered, should be arriving any day now.

A half dozen brooding rakish rogues waiting in the wings...oh hell ya!

Blodeuedd said...

It does sound good :)
Even if I am strangely prudish when ti comes to historical ( I blame Cartland)

Mandi said...

I so agree their romance needed more pages. All we see is Juliana not sure if she wants to be with Sin and then all of a sudden they have had this love affair over weeks? I love that Sin is a rake, but I wanted to see happy together more.

Great review!!

Barbara said...

Hey girl!! Wonderful and well thought out review!

I'm in the process of getting my review written for this one ;)

Heather D said...

Ok, now that I have finished reading ANWAR and posted my thoughts on it to my blog, I have read your review. We have very similar thinking on this one. I instantly thought Cruel Intentions as well. Which in turn made me see Ryan Phillipe as Sin. I
couldn't get his face out of my head.

I love how you describe Belinda as deranged!

Great Review.

VampFanGirl said...

Thanks Sophie!! Oh I know, I so love me some rakish rogues. :)

Hugs, VFG

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Its worth the read Blodeuedd!

:) VFG

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Thanks Mandi!

And DITTO! I really wanted more page time on Sin's and Juliana's romance.

Hugs, VFG

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Thanks Barbara for lovin' my review and introducing me to such a wonderful author!!!

HUGS, VFG

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Hi Heather!

Yay, someone else who noticed the CRUEL INTENTIONS-esque scene with Sin and his half-sister's request. But that's pretty much were the similarities ended though. I'm off to read your thoughts!

Hugs, VFG

Smokinhotbooks said...

It takes a lot for me to get back into historicals...like a lot.

I actually prefer my historicals to be more romantic than steamy, which is weird considering I read erotic historical romances O_o.

Is this one as steamy as Passions?

VampFanGirl said...

Hi KC!

ANWAR isn't as steamy as PASSION. In my opinion, PASSION is explicit while ANWAR has a more romantic steam to it if that makes any sense.

Hugs, VFG

Carolyn Crane said...

I find the cover as well as the title nearly irresistable. I may have to buy it and frame it. Oh, DH wouldn't like that tho. Glad to see it's a series.

VampFanGirl said...

Oh yeah, Carolyn, this cover definitely deserves to be framed and mounted over a fireplace. So purrrrrty.

:) VFG

carolsnotebook said...

I loved the summary and cover, but your review dampened the enthusiasm. Thanks for the honesty.

VampFanGirl said...

Hi Carol!

Yeah, this one didn't exactly turn out the way I wanted it to but don't take my word for it. You might like it.

:) VFG

Mrs. P said...

First time posting a comment...love your site!
This review was spot on for me. I found the book was finally getting good, and then poof! It ended. There was a real lack of interaction between the H/h for me...as if the plot took over the romance.
I found Sin's actions very sleazy in the beginning and it made it hard for me to like him. At all...until the end. Then, like I said, it ended too soon.

VampFanGirl said...

Hi Mrs. P!

Thanks for commenting and for your kind words regarding my site.

While it's been a year since I read this book, I can still vaguely remember my dissapointment. It opened so well but then fell completely flat.

I haven't read the subsequent series installments since ANWAR but I've read some positive reviews for book three. If there's still hope for you and the author, I'd suggest checking it out.

Hugs, VFG

 
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