(This is a part of my Canada Day Long Weekend Review-A-Thon. Click here to go to Sleepless Nights Reviews to learn more about it.)Rating:
I seem to have picked books written by authors who have chosen to move to Canada instead of those who were born here, oops. Oh wells. I didn't know Mary Balogh lived in Canada, and that discovery was part of the reason as to why I decided to do this review-a-thon. The thing with Mary Balogh's books is that I have to be in the right mood for it. I was going to do a review for Slightly Wicked but I really didn't like that book at all. So much so that I didn't want to do a review on it.
Slightly Scandalous by Mary Balogh, on the other hand, surprised me. I read a couple of paragraphs of its first chapter as was provided in Slightly Wicked and boy, was I amused. Lady Frejya Bedwyn (I should've read the first books because I have no idea why their names are so... Germanic?) is easily one of my favourite heroines ever. She is a very articulate and impressive woman who stands up for what she believes in (even if done in an impetuous manner) and is just generally such a fun character to read. Lady Frejya is hilarious. She delivers set-downs so graciously you wouldn't even know what to do with it days after she's done it. I believe tenacious would be the perfect word to describe her.
Lord Joshua Moore, Marquess of Hellmere, is just as charming and as captivating as a hero could be. Mary Balogh creates the perfect faux-indolent lord with him. The very first scene that introduces him is perfect. From the beginning, the chemistry and the tension between him and Freyja is palpable, it was awesome! Hellmere is the type of hero that appears as a rake but is really some sort of paragon with a hint of naughty sexiness.
Together, Hellmere and Lady Frejya battle ennui in Bath, a crazy dowager marchioness, a much unneeded threat, the Duke of Bewcastle and his quizzing glass, and last but not the least, their mutual feelings. Stories where both the heroine and the hero refuse to acknowledge their feelings when it is so obvious you can touch it usually annoy me, but not in this case. There was so many things going on in the story that I was distracted enough but wasn't taken away from the romance. Even the appearances of the numerous family members and their respective subplots weren't tedious and actually helped me get to know both Hellmere and Lady Frejya. It's in books like Slightly Scandalous that ascertains Mary Balogh's position as a master storyteller.
As for the cons, it might just be my short attention span, but I didn't appreciate all the details thrown at me. I just found that there was far too much exposition and too little dialogue at some parts of the book. Nonetheless, I'd recommend this book if you're a fan of feisty heroines, charming, rakish heroes and crazy family hijinks.