The Art of the Scandal
by Suzanne Tierney
Series n/a; standalone
Genre Adult Historical Romance
Publication Date August 28, 2019
May, 1850, London, England
“Beware, darling. Disaster rolls in on a whisper.”
Jilted by her fiancé, abandoned by her father, and scorned by her friends, Lady Lydia Pierpont and her pregnant, 15 year-old sister will be homeless by midnight unless she can charm the deed of her family’s home out of the mysterious South African who won the estate in a poker game.
Grieving over the death of his Jewish father and English mother, Simon Cohen has no time for gallantry. He’s out to reclaim his mother’s name from the aristocracy who humiliated her. With an art collection worth millions and the National Gallery begging for a donation, revenge is within reach.
But when Lydia points out that Simon’s treasure trove includes at least one forgery, they strike a deal. She’ll ferret out the fakes and if the debut of his collection goes smoothly, she’ll win back her home. If she fails, she will take the blame and go to jail.
Together, Lydia and Simon will feign an engagement, delve into the world of art forgery, and navigate the narrow-minded prejudices of London society to discover that love is forged, never faked.
Except at this moment, he knew who and where and what he was. He was the man falling for a woman who knew the world was cruel and still demanded he embrace it. Pain, loss, grief, hope, life. Too much. If he touched her, he would not survive without her. So he slipped his cravat off his collar. Without letting his hands so much as skim her neck, he looped it at the base, collecting the thick and wild curls that flowed down her back.
“If we were in a ballroom, or a fairy tale, or a dream, I would get down on my knees, Lydia. I would give up breath. I would give up life, for you to touch me there, where my collar lays open and my skin yearns for you.”
The hitch in her shoulders was subtle, barely there, but she searched his face the way she did art. Unguarded. Even when she could see pain coming, she refused to flinch.
“But I am not a man who can dream.” He knotted the bow around her hair so that it sat back from her face, its wild curls contained, if not tamed.
“So I beg of you, Rapunzel, do not let down your golden hair.”
I really liked Simon and Lydia’s story. First of all, the two of them were just lovely together. Even when they weren’t getting along I so wanted them to–and it was clear that eventually, when they let themselves, they would. Secondly, Ms. Tierney beautifully wove so many different threads into the plot–just when I’d forgotten one of them, it popped up again and tied itself into the lovely bow that finished up the story. Some of it I expected (the HEA! the resolution to Kitty’s concerns) others I didn’t even dream (secrets revealed about both Simon and Lydia’s mothers) but they all came together to give us an absolutely wonderful ending.
I may have teared up, at least a little. What an ending!
Suzanne Tierney is definitely an author I’ll be keeping an eye on!
Rating: 4 stars / A-
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
About the author:
SUZANNE TIERNEY – WHETHER it’s restlessness, wanderlust, or train fever, I love stories about journeys. So that’s what I write–books steeped in the lush details of history that tell of heroines thoroughly devoted to their sense of place, even when it’s the wrong place, and the heroes who catapult, challenge and cherish those heroines, even when they have no intention of setting down roots.
FROM your arm chair, your train carriage, your vivid imagination, come and join me on the ultimate adventure.
GIVEAWAY TERMS & CONDITIONS: Open to internationally. One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card. This giveaway is administered by Pure Textuality PR on behalf of Suzanne Tierney. Giveaway ends 8/30/2018 @ 11:59pm EST.