Book Tour & Review: Sweet Scandal by Scarlet Scott

He’s not ready to give up on the plucky Lady Helen, 
especially when he discovers that she has secrets of her own…


SWEET SCANDAL
Heart’s Temptation #4
Scarlett Scott
Released May 9, 2017
 
Not the
average lady
Lady Helen
Harrington is a spinster by choice. She hasn’t any desire to entangle herself
in romantic nonsense. Instead, she prefers to spend her time championing the
causes nearest to her heart through writing articles for the London Beacon.
When a ruthless American tycoon suddenly buys the struggling paper with plans
to turn it into a business journal, Lady Helen isn’t about to stand idly by or
put down her pen. Even if the ruthless tycoon in question happens to be the
most maddeningly handsome man she’s ever met in her life.
 
Not the
average man
Levi Storm
built his empire the hard way, spending years working his way out of the slums where
he grew up. He won’t allow a spoiled aristocrat like Lady Helen to interfere
with his plans to further his brand with the newspaper he’s just acquired. It
doesn’t matter how lovely she is or how persuasive her arguments or how
perfectly she fits in his arms.
 
One
sweet scandal

 

 

When
scandal looms and Helen discovers a shocking secret about Levi, she does what
she must to protect herself. But Levi isn’t the sort of man who admits defeat,
and he’s not ready to give up on the plucky Lady Helen, especially when he
discovers that she has secrets of her own…

 

From the moment she walks into his newly purchased newspaper, she challenged him. She was confused by his presence, and disheartened to learn that her services were no longer needed. She put up as much a fight as a lady could, and despite his busy schedule, he couldn’t help but to notice her while he was ceremoniously trying to get rid of her. Notice her beauty, her determination, her strength. He was intrigued, but business came first; so instead of taking the time to get to know her and better understand why she was refusing to leave without answers, he escorted her out the door and went about his business. But not before retrieving the hat that had fallen from her head and vowing to return it. His excuse, of course, to seek her out later when he had more time.

Helen found the man insufferable, rude, and just plain mean. His handsome looks didn’t help matters. It also didn’t help to find out he was the good friend of Jesse, (the husband of her sisters’s sister-in-law; the people with whom she resided), and he would be having dinner with them that evening. Their constant bickering had a flirtatious undertone that only they were blind to. They denied they even liked each other – which in some ways were true- but their attraction was too strong to successfully hide. They eventually gave in when they discovered the “nice” side of each other; and it’s pure heaven for them and the readers. Scott does a wonderful job with description and dialogue. Each scene is easily envisioned, and Levi is naughty in a charming way. I loved reading what he had to say, and Helen did a great job holding her own. Even though Levi held a secret that should make someone totally dislike him, it’s hard to. He didn’t set out to deceive her in any way, and my heart went out to him – to them both. He had choices to make, but thanks to his upbringing he often found it difficult to separate business from personal. To him, they were one and the same. It was obvious they cared deeply for each other, but emotions can often lead to bad decisions, especially emotions as strong as these two felt. Kudos for Scott for portraying them so vividly.

Although Helen had good reasons to hold on to her anger, I became just a smidgen perturbed by her towards the end. I was about ready to pull out a hair or two, but luckily it didn’t get to that. I adored Bella and Jesse (the people she lived with) and her sisters – the bit we get of them – and I want to read more about them all.

Rating system: Cups of Coffee (the less the better)

0: You won’t need any coffee to stay up for this one. It’s intriguing enough all on its own.
1: You’ll stay up late, but not all night. Brew one cup.
2: You’ll read as long as you’re not tired. If you are, two cups should do the trick.
3: I hope you got plenty of rest; you’ll need it, or at least 3 cups.
4: If the cable goes out, read the book. It’s better than nothing, I guess. Oh, don’t forget your brew!
5: Find anything else to do- it doesn’t matter what it is. Don’t waste your coffee. Too much caffeine is bad for you.

My rating: 1/2 cup of coffee

Award-winning
author Scarlett Scott writes contemporary and historical
romance with heat, heart, and happily ever afters. Since publishing her first
book in 2010, she has become a wife, mother to adorable identical twins and one
TV-loving dog, and a killer karaoke singer. Well, maybe not the last part, but
that’s what she’d like to think.
A
self-professed literary junkie and nerd, she loves reading anything but
especially romance novels, poetry, and Middle English verse. When she’s not
reading, writing, wrangling toddlers, or camping, you can catch up with her on
her website. Hearing from readers
never fails to make her day.
 

Everything sounded as if it were very far away, carried to her on a lush summer breeze. Maybe she should not have consumed quite so much champagne. She’d lost count of how many flutes she’d drained over the course of the ball. Good heavens, had it been more than five? A fresh wave of dizziness assailed her and she stumbled against his powerful, lean frame. He smelled divine, she thought fuzzily.
“Come,” he ordered, ushering her hastily away.
She collected her thoughts enough to protest. “Where are you taking me?”
He couldn’t simply escort her out of the ballroom and into a private room. Propriety certainly didn’t allow such a thing. She ought not to allow such a thing. Would not if it weren’t for the spinning of her head. As it stood, she was ineffectual as a fly at the moment.
“Hush.” He steered her around a tittering countess and a footman bearing a tray of champagne flutes.
“But—”
“My lady, hush.”
“Someone will see.”
“No one will notice. Everyone here is either far too inebriated or preoccupied.”
Casting a quick look about, he led her from the ballroom, down the hall, and into another chamber. As the door closed at their backs, stifling the cacophony of sound from the ballroom beyond, Helen realized they were in Jesse’s study. Alone. Still dizzied, she clutched Mr. Storm’s arm. “We are in our host’s private study. We cannot be here together.”
“Jesse won’t mind,” he assured her, guiding her to an overstuffed chair and easing her into it. He sank to his knees before her, his expression for once unguarded. “Are you unwell, my lady?”
He was concerned. A strange, new warmth stole over her. The world came back into crisp focus but her heart hammered furiously against her breast. She still felt off-kilter, almost as though she were out of her own skin, almost as if she were giddy.
Oh dear. He was before her like a knight of old, so striking and elegant, so unlike the arrogant stranger who had unceremoniously removed her from his offices the day they’d met. This Mr. Storm was different. Or maybe she was different. Or the night was different. Or she was hopelessly, thoroughly in her cups. She didn’t know which.
“I am fine,” she forced herself to say. “I daresay I sampled too much of the champagne this evening and that is all.”
“You don’t seem fine, my lady.” He frowned. His hands bracketed her skirts, near enough to her that he almost touched her, and the thought of those big hands of his on her made her quite weak. “Can I fetch you something? Some water, perhaps? Some ice?”
She licked lips that had suddenly gone dry. “There is nothing I need other than for you to return me to the ball. This is quite scandalous, sir. If someone should come upon us, it would cause us no end of trouble.”
“No one will come upon us. I’ve locked the door.”
His casual pronouncement did wicked things to her body that she was sure had everything to do with the blasted champagne. The door was locked. No one could disturb them or happen upon them. They were free to do what they chose.
Yes, she was in her cups alright, she had to be. There was no other reason for her to lean forward, set her palms upon Mr. Storm’s shoulders, and press her mouth to his. No other reason save for the fact that she had been thinking about him all day, about how he had touched and kissed her, how he had made her feel, how he had wanted her in his bed. She kissed him just for the feeling of his mouth upon hers once more, because she couldn’t help herself, because she couldn’t not.

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