Six years ago, eighteen-year-old Lady Isabella Scranton scandalized all of London by eloping the night of her come-out ball with the notorious rake, Lord Mac Mackenzie. After three turbulent years of marriage, she scandalized London once again—this time by leaving him.
Now the reformed Mac has returned, and he wants one thing: Isabella back in his life, his house, his bed. He'll do anything he has to, play any game, as long as he gets her back. Isabella resists, but when she agrees to pose for erotic paintings he's been working on, she realizes her body has never stopped craving her husband’s very skilled touch. Mac is determined to show Isabella that he's a changed man, but three years without her has only increased his hunger for her.
When an ingenious forger with designs on Mac's paintings, and Isabella herself, comes dangerously near, Mac sets himself up as Isabella’s protector and vows to never leave her side, whether his independent and proud lady likes it or not.
(Shame on whoever wrote that synopsis, painfully obvious what happens.)
Anyhoo. I'm just going to cut right to the chase on Isabella: I found her reluctance maddening, and at one point; selfish. Yet, understandable. I guess I felt that way towards her because I loved Mac so much. He was obviously trying so, so very hard to win back Isabella, but his own past reckless (and even more selfish) behavior, made her wary and distrusting of him.
I was instantly charmed by Mac (in the first book of this series, actually). He was funny, attentive, creative, and I was able to form a perfectly delicious picture of him inside my head. (I think it was the kilt.) As the reader, I knew everything Mac was doing to get his beloved wife back was in earnest. But the problem was, Isabella didn't know that. She was burned by him in the past, which is revealed as the story moves along (at a good pace), and I was able to understand why she was so scared to go back to him. But it was so hard for me to stop wishing she would just run back into his waiting arms because he was so darn charming! I'm glad though, that the author did not write it that way. After learning of everything that happened between them, and what they were still trying to work through, needing to really confront with one another, I know I would have been disappointed. Not just because I think it would have hurt the story, it would have hurt the personality of the two leading characters.
Isabella was introduced in the first book when Beth met Mac. I knew I would really like her, and I did, I loved her. She was an intelligent, beautiful, strong-willed character. And Mac, while I was very charmed by him, seemed like he was a man who got pretty much anything he wanted. I think that if Isabella would have went running back to him, then Mac really would not have learned a thing. It didn't matter how much he claimed to be a changed man, it wasn't enough that he was only telling her that, he had to slow down and let her see that change in him. Let her see that he really was trustworthy again so she could believe in it herself. I think it did him good to know what it was like to sweat a little bit more and work to get back the woman he so loved.
I won't get further in to the plot for fear of completely ruining the story for a future reader, yet even with that bad synopsis, and all my talk about the two lovebirds, you still might find yourself surprised by this book, and even swept away by the romance and ever growing love in this one. (Not to mention the glimpses of the rest of Mac's interesting family.)