Between the Devil and Desire
Avon, Jan 2009, $6.99
In 1851 Jack “Artful” Dodger knows he has come a long way from his thieving days on the streets of London to where he is now, the owner of an exclusive gentleman's club, which means aristocratic women hate him. However, his dirt poor begging days have left a mark on his soul; he wants more and more money with no entanglements.
Changes abruptly occur when the notorious rake is named guardian by the late Duke of Lovingdon of his heir, four years old Henry to the appalling shock of the child’s mom, Widow Lady Olivia. Initially Jack is bewildered with why him from a highly regarded lord and unhappy with the task as it interferes with his womanizing and money-making; that is until he begins to see the lioness lady. He wants her and plans to have her; she wants him and plans to avoid him. As they argue while taking care of her son, they fall in love. However, before they can consider a family, the identity of his parents surfaces leaving Jack to confront danger and end his hopes of marrying the duchess
The sequel to IN BED WITH THE DEVIL is another excellent adult where are they now twisting of Charles Dickens' Oliver Twist. The story line is character driven starting with the reading of the shocking will as Dodger and Olivia go from enemies with a common purpose to love with an even stronger common purpose. The late suspense rounds out a wonderfully passionate Victorian that does justice to Mr. Dickens’ classic.