Review: A Wicked Reputation (Once Wicked #3) by Liana LeFey

Print Length: 320 pages
Publisher: Entangled Publishing Amara (February 25, 2019)

From Betrayed by her fiancé and her best friend, Lady Diana Haversham's reputation is left in ruins, and she is unjustly cast out by her family. Left with little choice, she agrees to pretend to be a courtesan to protect her benefactor's secret. What she didn't count on was meeting temptation in the form of one Lord Lucas Blackthorn. 

Lucas is fascinated by the shameless Diana, whom his friends claim is his perfect counterpart. He can't stop thinking about her sultry smile and captivating eyes, but what draws him most is the sharp mind she reveals—and the certainty she's hiding something.

When Lucas learns the scandalous truth, Diana will have to make a life-and-death choice.

My Rating: 3 stars out of 5

DISCLAIMER 1: This is a stand alone story. You do not need to have read the others in order to enjoy this one.

While I admit that this was an interesting take on the whole idea of a courtesan (even a pretend one), and the friendship between the characters was endearing, I just didn't find this story believable. 

To begin with if Lucas could so easily figure out the truth based on what he saw through an open window there is no way they could have kept their secret as long as they did. Their lackluster approach to privacy completely went against how hard they worked to keep up the charade. And while I can understand why Harrow would do anything to protect her honor, the fact that he so readily agreed to letting Lucas "have her" for even one night was too unbelievable. If they were such good "friends" as they would have the ton believe, and Harrow and Diana into sharing, there would have been no need for the indecent wager in the first place. And yes, I fully understand that Harrow went along with it because Diana desired it, but it was definitely NOT in keeping up with the appearance they had so carefully cultivated. 

Aside from that, I very much enjoyed the banter between Diana and Lucas. Watching as they went from strangers to lovers, and then more was part of what made the story enjoyable. I do wish that Harrow's real lover would have made more of an impact. He seemed more an "Afterthought" than an actual character. As did Harrow's wife and son. Was the boy really his? Or was he protecting his wife the same way she protected him? How did they get along? I would have loved to have seen more interaction between them as well as learn their "story" other than the snippets we got.

Overall, it was a solid read that I enjoyed. I just wish there was more to it. I would read more from this author!

DISCLAIMER 2I received a complimentary copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.


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