I have never read a Loretta Chase book before. This came up in conversation at RWA, when a group of us were at the bookstore where Sarah, Jane, Kassia and co. were doing the interview for the Today Show. We were instructed to do some random browsing for the cameras, and somehow a group of us ended up in front of Loretta Chase. Someone picked up a couple of her books and I mentioned that I’d not read her before.

*gasps of shock and horror*

No really, there were! They were happy to give me a few recommendations, which I promptly proceeded to forget, but when I went to look at my TBR shelves later and saw Lord of Scoundrels and Your Scandalous Ways there, I thought those sounded familiar. I realized on Monday that I didn’t think I’d read a TBR book yet this month, so I grabbed Lord of Scoundrels.

I have to be honest. I liked this book, but I wasn’t wowed by it and I definitely didn’t love it. The characters of Jess and Dain were interesting but actually seemed to me to be just characters, both a little one-dimensional. Reading the book, I couldn’t get the feeling out of my head that I was reading a story. I know that sounds weird, since I was reading a story, but you know how it feels different, reading a fairy tale to your child–reading them a story–versus falling into a book? I didn’t have that here. I felt like someone was narrating this book to me. And it was amusing and I finished it, but when I closed it, I felt no real sense of satisfaction or attachment to either the stories or the characters.

Actually, if we’re being really honest, I was a little annoyed by the characters at times. I thought Dain was unlikeable, spoiled and selfish. I know I was supposed to have empathy for him, because he had a terrible childhood and no one loved him, but I didn’t. I just felt impatient and like telling him to get over it (I know, I’m so kind). As for Jess, she fell flat, almost like she didn’t respect herself, to fall “in love” with a man who’d treat her so shabbily. She liked the sex, but what else was there about him to love? I didn’t get it.

But clearly the book didn’t totally fail for me because I did finish it. But it’s not a book I’d pick up again. I did open Your Scandalous Ways and give that a try, but I had similar feelings, so I think it’s probably the author’s style that doesn’t appeal to me, and that happens. Clearly it worked for and appealed to a whole lot of other people, so I don’t mind being in the minority on this one!

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