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A Scot in the Dark

by Sarah MacLean

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2801772,655 (3.61)5
Lonesome Lily turned Scandalous Siren Miss Lillian Hargrove has lived much of her life alone in a gilded cage, longing for love and companionship. When an artist offers her pretty promises and begs her to pose for a scandalous portrait, Lily doesn't hesitate . . . until the lying libertine leaves her in disgrace. With the painting now public, Lily has no choice but to turn to the one man who might save her from ruin. Highland Devil turned Halfhearted Duke The Duke of Warnick loathes all things English, none more so than the aristocracy. It does not matter that the imposing Scotsman has inherited one of the most venerable dukedoms in Britain--he wants nothing to do with it, especially when he discovers that the unwanted title comes with a troublesome ward, one who is far too old and far too beautiful to be his problem. Tartan Comes to Town Warnick arrives in London with a single goal: get the chit married and see her become someone else's problem, then return to a normal, quiet life in Scotland. It's the perfect plan, until Lily declares she'll only marry for love . . . and the Scot finds that there is one thing in England he likes far too much . . .… (more)
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Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
If you've ever wondered what sexting back in the day would have been like, this could give you a pretty good idea. Lillian poses for a "private" portrait for her artist lover who promises he would never show it to anyone else. Given little affection from those around her and desperate to matter to someone, anyone, she doesn't anticipate his next action. He decides to show the painting. She is ruined. She just wants to run away and get away from the scandal, live a happy and quiet life using the money left for her by her deceased family. Unfortunately her guardian disagrees. He insists she can't outrun this scandal and he's not wrong. They battle each other; they battle society and in the end, they find their happy. This was engaging and infuriating. ( )
  amoderndaybelle | May 27, 2021 |
As with the first book in this series, I didn't care for the narrator, who really draws out the word "her" in every situation: huuuuuuhhhhhh. Really annoying. But, it helped to speed it up to 1.4x, and I tried to be more chill about the annoyances.

Alec's constant "I'm not good enough. She deserves someone better than me." inner monologue got a bit tiring. Yeah, yeah, we get it, you've been told your whole life that you're a piece of meat, and you've internalized it. Enough, already.

Overlooking those annoyances, though, it was a fun read. And, granted, those things wouldn't have been annoyances if I'd not listened to the audiobook, because I could skim past the 300th iteration of "wah, I'm not good enough" whining. ( )
  ssperson | Apr 3, 2021 |
Maybe it's because I took forever and a day to finish this, but it seemed to drag on a bit after the 60% mark. Alec was so bullheaded and just wouldn't listen to reason. While I wanted to like this one more, the constant back and forth between the couple got on my nerves. ( )
  littlebookjockey | Sep 15, 2020 |
Lillian is a old ward mostly because she has been forgotten. When an artist shows interest in her, she poses for a nude leading to her potential ruination. Her guardian, the Duke of Warnick, is a large Scotsman who sweeps in to marry her off with an attractive dowry. Both are wounded souls who have been made to feel unworthy or forgotten, so, obviously, they are perfect for each but just can't see it. I generally find MacLean's characters, concepts, and writing fun. However, this one seemed like it could have had a bit more editing as some of the scenes didn't add much to the overall story and some seemed to repeat themselves.
  4leschats | Jul 15, 2020 |
Confession Time:
First: I love, love, love anything by Sarah Maclean. Who can resist an author whose tag line is “I write books. There’s smooching in them”. This book is no exception to my love for Sarah’s work. I waited a long time to read this book and let me tell you – the wait was worth it.
Second: This is the 3rd book I have read this summer where the hero is extra-large, oversized, ginormous…. (you get the idea). In all of them, the hero has been made to feel like a sexual oddity, an oversized BRUTE in this case. All three heroes think that love is not for them because no woman would want to love someone like them.
Sarah Maclean has used the notion of gossip and scandal to create a story around two people who don’t seem to fit the ton mold of what it is to be popular. Lillian Hargrove, the Duke’s ward has been left on her own for over 5 years – since the new Duke took over. She is not titled, but not quite a servant either. She has been left on her own wanting nothing more than to have someone love her.
Alec Stuart is a Scot, through and through. He is also the current Duke of Warnick was never meant to gain the title. Through a strange set of coincidences, 16 dukes in a row died leaving his 17th in line for the title. The last thing he wanted was to inherit an English title but he took on the responsibility of the title without going in for all the trappings of the peearage. One thing he didn’t handle was his ward. He had been a Duke for 5 years before even finding out that he had a ward. By this time Lillian was 24 ad had never had a season because the Duke had overlooked her completely. Not really, he just hadn’t been told about her. Now, He only learns that he has a ward because she is involved in the Scandal of the season.
Lillian struck up a friendship with artist Derek Hawkins. He compliments her calling her Lovely Lily nad His Muse and she thinks she is in love with him. Thinking they will marry, she poses for a nude portrait, thinking no one will see it but him. Imagine her surprise when she finds out that not only did he submit it to the Royal Academy to be displayed but he had no intention of marrying her.
Alec rushes to London to save her from scandal. If only he can get her married within the next 10 days, before her portrait is unveiled, she can avoid being ruined. While he tries to find an appropriate husband, they are drawn to each other and the only husband she wants is the one she can’t have – Alec Stuart himself. Although, she is a commoner and he is a Duke, he feels that he isn’t worthy of her. The shame of his past as the Scottish Brute will not allow him to go for the happiness he deserves, even as he tries to tell her that her shame doesn’t define her.
Sarah Maclean begins each chapter with a Gossip Rag type headline that says it all. These two are attracted to each other yet they can’t seem to get over the pain of the past that keeps them apart. The Happily Ever After comes but not without some tears and pain. But that just makes it all the more worth it when they find their true love.
( )
  ddeluna1 | Mar 19, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
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For the scandalous girls
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March 1829

Bernard Settlesworth, Esquire, believed that name was destiny.
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Lonesome Lily turned Scandalous Siren Miss Lillian Hargrove has lived much of her life alone in a gilded cage, longing for love and companionship. When an artist offers her pretty promises and begs her to pose for a scandalous portrait, Lily doesn't hesitate . . . until the lying libertine leaves her in disgrace. With the painting now public, Lily has no choice but to turn to the one man who might save her from ruin. Highland Devil turned Halfhearted Duke The Duke of Warnick loathes all things English, none more so than the aristocracy. It does not matter that the imposing Scotsman has inherited one of the most venerable dukedoms in Britain--he wants nothing to do with it, especially when he discovers that the unwanted title comes with a troublesome ward, one who is far too old and far too beautiful to be his problem. Tartan Comes to Town Warnick arrives in London with a single goal: get the chit married and see her become someone else's problem, then return to a normal, quiet life in Scotland. It's the perfect plan, until Lily declares she'll only marry for love . . . and the Scot finds that there is one thing in England he likes far too much . . .

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Lonesome Lily Turned Scandalous Siren

Miss Lillian Hargrove has lived much of her life alone in a gilded cage, longing for love and companionship. When an artist offers her pretty promises and begs her to pose for a scandalous portrait, Lily doesn't hesitate...until the lying libertine leaves her in disgrace. With the painting now public, Lily has no choice but to turn to the one man who might save her from ruin.


Highland Devil turned Halfhearted Duke


The Duke of Warnick loathes all things English, none more so than the aristocracy. It does not matter that the imposing Scotsman has inherited one of the most venerable dukedoms in Britain—he wants nothing to do with it, especially when he discovers that the unwanted title comes with a troublesome ward, one who is far too old and far too beautiful to be his problem.

Tartan Comes to Town

Warnick arrives in London with a single goal: get the chit married and see her become someone else's problem, then return to a normal, quiet life in Scotland. It's the perfect plan, until Lily declares she'll only marry for love...and the Scot finds that there is one thing in England he likes far too much...
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