Published by Avon
Genres: Historical, Romance, Historical Romance
Source: Personal Collection
Add to: Goodreads
A well-practiced rake, weary of easy conquests and empty pleasures, Tarquin Vale, Earl of Ashcroft, knows women—and his every instinct warns him to beware of this one. Diana Carrick's brazen overtures have thrown the haunted, sinfully handsome lord completely off his guard. Why, the exquisite temptress stated outright that she wishes to be his lover. But it is neither Diana's boldness nor her beauty that intrigues him so—it is the innocence he senses behind her worldly mask.
Intent upon the seduction that will finally free her, Diana has set her sights on the notorious Ashcroft—never dreaming that there is much more to the enigmatic rogue than sin and deviltry. His kiss is bewitching, his caress intoxicating—and even the dangerous secret Diana must protect cannot shield her from Ashcroft's dark allure. - via GoodReads
Anna Campbell’s latest novel, My Reckless Surrender, starts with a story of undeniable lust that burns throughout the first half of the book only to continue in the second half with a charming story that tears at your heartstrings. Readers will not be disappointed in this splendid tale of an infamous rake’s fall and the dazzling widow who caught him.
“I want to be your lover.” Diana Carrick utters this shocking line to the infamous rake Tarquin Vale, Earl of Ashcroft. Therein starts this seductive and deceptive tale of a mischievous plan that began innocently but ended differently than anyone expected. The Earl’s initial response is confusion, unable to conceive what brought Diana to his library and what made her make this shocking claim. While every instinct tells him to cast her aside and forget her, he cannot deny their attraction and his ultimate fascination with this alluring widow.
Diana has made a deal with the devil, or rather her father’s employer the Marquess of Burnley, a terminally ill man with vengeance on his mind. His deal? Sleep with the Earl and become pregnant with his child. In return, Burley will marry her, claim the Earl’s child as his heir so she can become the mistress of Cranston Abbey, a property that is worth everything to Diana. This seems simple enough…dangerous, yet a small road block to overcome in order to lead her to the ultimate prize. The only difficulty is hiding this deceit from the Earl and not losing her heart to him in the process. Unfortunately, limiting their association to be just another summer affair is easier said than done for both Diana and Tarquin. If or when Tarquin finds out the truth, will it be too late for their happily ever after?
The first half of this story is scorching. The real basis for the beginning of Diana and Tarquin’s affair is a physical attraction that neither one of them can control. It overwhelms both of them from the start which is terrifying to this couple. Diana becomes afraid their relationship will develop into something more, something that will break her heart forever. Tarquin becomes afraid of the new emotions he feels for her and how difficult it is becoming to remain distant.
The characters were amazing. Tarquin is established as a ruthless rake early on, and the growth of his character that takes place throughout the book is spectacular. You go through the emotions with him as he develops a heart, a conscience, and an ambition to be a better person. Diana on the other hand is initially so overwhelmed with shame and despair it can feel awkward and uncomfortable at times. She is a difficult heroine to stand behind, and rightly so. Her actions and reasoning are confusing and difficult to understand. She is as intriguing to the reader as she is to Tarquin.
The second half of the story lets go of the lust and cranks up the heartache. Each page brings another element to complicate their relationship and that brings with it more uncertainty as to the outcome of the story. The book wraps a spell around you to the point where you cannot quit turning the pages and cannot for any reason whatsoever, put the book down. It touches every possible emotion and sweeps you away into a beautifully written story that is impossible to not love. The characters, the plot, the emotional adventure all make for one irresistible story. To surrender your time to read this book and money to own it is anything but reckless.