Monday, January 23, 2017

Review: Wicked in His Arms by Stacy Reid

Wicked in His Arms by Stacy Reid
Series: Wedded by Scandal, Book 2
Publisher: Entangled: Scandalous
Genre: Historical Romance Wicked in His Arms Cover
ISBN: 9781682814024
Release Date: January 23, 2017
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N
Stacy Reid Reading Order

Tobias Walcott, the Earl of Blade, has learned it is best to exercise rigid control over his passions and emotions in all that he does. Uncaring that it makes him seem cool and aloof to most in the ton, he is content with his desire to only woo agreeable and demur females. Then unforeseen circumstances see him trapped in a closet at a house party with the last woman he would ever make his countess.

Lady Olivia Sherwood is everything he should not desire in a female—unconventional, too decisive, and utterly without decorum. But passion ignites between them and they are discovered. Honor demands they wed, and while Tobias finds himself unwillingly drawn to the bewitching beauty, he must do everything not to tempt the passion that burns in him for her, lest it leads to disastrous consequences.

A passionate artist ahead of her time meets her match in a seemingly glacial earl in Wicked in His Arms. The first Wedded by Scandal book, Accidentally Compromising the Duke, was one of my favorite books of 2016, so I eagerly dove into this story.

Livvie is a delightful heroine. She’s bold, outspoken, and completely out of place in society. Of course, this makes it difficult for her to find a husband and since her stepfather’s health is fragile her mother is pushing her to secure a future for herself and her sister. Thus Livvie ends up as a guest of Tobias’s mother who is to give her the polish she needs to catch a husband…and of course winds up in Tobias’s path. Tobias has the weight of his family’s name on his shoulders. With generations of scandalous earls tarring the family reputation, Tobias has taken the opposite path and is instead ice cold with no patience for tears or dramatics. Tobias wants a sensible woman to be his wife, a woman who is nothing like Livvie. Only he can’t stop thinking about her…

Livvie and Tobias’s romance is a rocky one to say the least. I struggled with Tobias’s character because he was hard to like. He can be cruel and deliberately embarrasses Livvie at one point. And he runs so hot and cold that I sometimes had a hard time understanding why she was falling for him. I struggled with rating this book because if Tobias hadn’t been the way he was, there wouldn’t have been much of a story. The conflicts are generally internal and the characters needed room to grow. But as a hero, Tobias wasn’t my favorite, even though I understood why he acted the way he did. It’s no spoiler to say that he redeems himself (what happily ever after would there be if he didn’t?), and I definitely loved the way in which he did. When he and Livvie weren’t fighting, they were fantastic together and the pages of the story flew by. I yearned to see more of that excellent chemistry, because when Wicked in His Arms worked, it worked really well. And even when I had problems with the characters, I still enjoyed Stacy Reid’s excellent writing.

Wicked in His Arms is the second book in the Wedded by Scandal series, but it can easily be read as a standalone. Edmond and Adel (the hero and heroine of the first story) do briefly appear, but it’s the dark and mysterious Westfall who threatens to steal the page. I absolutely adore the Wedded by Scandal series and Wicked in His Arms definitely made me excited to see what Ms. Reid delivers next!

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.