No Good Duke Goes Unpunished

No Good Duke Goes Unpunished

The Third Rule of Scoundrels

Large Print - 2015
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He is the Killer Duke, accused of murdering Mara Lowe on the eve of her wedding to his father. With no memory of that fateful night, Temple has reigned over London's darkest corners for twelve years, wealthy and powerful but beyond redemption. Until one night Mara resurfaces, offering the one thing he's dreamed of: absolution... Mara planned never to return to the world from which she'd run, but when her brother falls deep into debt at Temple's exclusive casino, she has no choice but to offer Temple a trade that ends in her returning to society and proving to the world what only she knows -- that he is no killer. It's a fine trade, until Temple realizes that the lady -- and her past -- are more than they seem. It will take every bit of his strength to resist the pull of this mysterious, maddening woman who seems willing to risk everything for honor... and to keep from putting himself on the line for love.
Publisher: Waterville, Maine : Thorndike Press, A parft of Gale, Cengage Learning, 2015
Edition: Large Print edition
Copyright Date: ©2013
ISBN: 9781410477514
Characteristics: 585 pages (large print) ; 23 cm
large print
Call Number: LT MACLEAN, S


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Jun 25, 2018

To escape a marriage forced upon her by her abusive father, Mara tries to fake her 'ruin' by a stranger - only she bungles it and the stranger (the duke's son, Temple) is accused of her murder instead. Like a coward, she doesn't correct the error - though her cowardice does come from her situation and past. Years later, when her brother has lost all his money and the money she entrusted with him for the orphans she looks after (since women had no real rights, especially those in hiding), she must come clean to Temple and try to bargain her revealing the truth and therefore proving he isn't a killer with her need to protect the orphans in her care from the resulting scandal. Temple, embittered by 12 years in hell because her tricks, wants revenge more than anything - despite his attraction to her, and hers to him.

I like this book. It's not a book I would read because of the great love scenes or the humor, other writers do better at both. It's more a book worth reading because of it's deep characters and well-written plots. (Though the writer does say things like 'infection' even knowing that 'infection' was an unknown concept - and she should know better given her write-up on medicine of the age at the end of the book.)

These books in this series and this one in particular show the darker side of women having little power over their own lives, and the often stupid mistakes they make - but mistakes and paths they might not have taken had they been valued as human beings. Mara's cowardice isn't appealing, and the story drags a bit because of it, but her struggles and need to protect children thrown away by their gentry fathers is. Temple's anger is understandable but his journey, his struggles, are also illuminating - since he did find a new path, and perhaps, given his rather haughty and privileged sense of the world before his fall, it made him a more understanding person as well. After all, he was accused of her murder yet isn't prosecuted or apparently investigated, only shunned - not the same fate as would hit a commoner by a long shot.

A nice change from historical romance novels that tend to overlook the actual history they exist within. it may seem darker than the other four, but actually, the whole series is about the darker elements in 1800s England - after all, it's about four people that run The Fallen Angel, and only because each of them had some kind of 'fall from grace' - the 'grace' of a rather restricting but privileged (even in regards to crime and having people willing to cover up even the most violent of crimes) and haughty aristocracy out of touch with the misery and struggles around it, struggles that would eventually change the fabric of the old world. :)

Chapel_Hill_MarthaW Oct 10, 2015

While overall I think I prefer MacLean's debut Love by Numbers trilogy to this one, since the former is overall lighter in tone, I am enjoying this series a fair amount, and thought this was a quite good installment. It's the darkest book in the series so far, almost TOO dark for me (I like my romances light and funny, though, so keep in mind that my threshold is pretty low), but I thought both main characters were compelling, I believed their romance, and the very end of the book has a surprise that will make readers eager for the fourth and final volume.

Nov 05, 2014

I totally called it 30% into the book.

The boy has been completely and utterly pu**y whipped. And that's all anyone needs to know.

Jun 07, 2014

This is a 2014 RITA Historical Romance Finalist for a good reason: this is a good book. There is nothing wrong with the protagonist other than she is independent and street smart and has trust issues. Mara Lowe is not an innocent, wronged, shrinking violet and that may put some Romance readers off. Yes, it is a dark story and gets darker as the plot moves goes along. The characters in this story are not, in public, nice people, but in the end they figure things out.

KCFinnegan Mar 26, 2014

It was a little too dark, and yes, the heroine wasn't really all that likeable. I thought she was a con artist. Maclean has written a lot better.

Ladre Mar 01, 2014

The series started off fairly well but has gotten progressively worse. I wasn't able to finish this book. The plot was ridiculous - and that's coming from a fan of the genre - and the motivation of the characters was utterly unbelievable. I found Mara to be completely unlikeable with almost no redeeming qualities. The author is not a bad writer, but she seems to lack the ability to write heroines who are strong, smart, *and* appealing. (With mixed results, Loretta Chase, Julia Quinn, Eloisa James, Sherry Thomas, and Mary Balogh are much better in this regard.)

And without the ability to create a strong female lead, the romance goes nowhere. This book is a prime example, in my opinion, of an interesting premise sunk by a twit of a heroine.

Nov 02, 2013

Darker than the previous two books in the series, but utter perfection.


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Jun 07, 2014

"I wish we could start anew." [Mara said.]
He shook his head. "I don't. Without the past, there would be no present. No future. I don't regret a moment of it. It all brought us here. To this place. To this moment. To this love."


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