This book is written in the same tone as "Seven Secrets." There isn't, however, as much dialogue. The H and H are well matched, although Roman's character is not as fully developed as the heroine's (but I am not saying he is undeveloped either). Or perhaps it was Roman's fascination with her that was a little underdeveloped - he has seen her on a number of occasions, fancied her, but after one encounter decides he wants to possess her and she to possess him. Don't get me wrong, I like that desire for mutual possession on his behalf; it makes a relationship two sided as opposed to one sided.
I got frustrated with Charlotte's NOT wanting to be seen in public with Roman, not wanting anyone to know anything about the affair - although, in all fairness to Mallory and her Charlotte that is a very understandable emotion because of the time period and he not being a member of the ton and all. I also got frustrated with Charlotte's indecisions. She desired/desires Roman, but is unwilling to give up her father's expectations of a good marriage - although, of course, that is her internal struggle throughout the novel. What will she choose - love or expectation (and an affair on the side)? But as the novel develops, Charlotte grows. I think that is perhaps it - she was a tad too settled with her lot in life, not a spark of rebellion, always accepting things, never standing up for herself, until she meets Roman, who brings out this other side of her - perhaps the real side of her. She does desire love; she expresses those thoughts through out the novel; she desires freedom; she feels broken; she no longer wishes to be cold, and she achieves these desires in the end, redeeming herself in my eyes.
I like Mallory's writing style. I like the fact that she does not spell things out for her readers, making them feel dimwitted. She appreciates her readers' intellect and leaves them to conclude a number of things.
Overall, this book is very good - with a heroine, as I described above, who frustrates at times, but manages to overcome her struggles, growing as a character. Our hero is a bad guy, in business only. He has a heart of gold (how cliché), especially when it comes to Charlotte. He does play games with her, but sets things up in such a way as to fulfill every one of her desires - making it possible for her to have a titled husband and an affair with him should she marry. At the same time testing her, testing her fortitude, testing to see what she will choose.
I really recommend this book. It is a very good read. Oh! there are no lush sex scenes here:)