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ARC Review: A Daring Pursuit by Kate Bateman

Publication Date: May 24, 2022

Synopsis:

The Davies and Montgomery families have been locked in an ancient feud. But it’s a thin line between love and hate in Kate Bateman’s A Daring Pursuit.

TWO ENEMIES
Carys Davies is doing everything in her power to avoid marriage. Staying single is the only way to hide the secret that could ruin her—and her family—if it was revealed. For the past two seasons she’s scandalized the ton with her outrageous outfits and brazen ways in a futile bid to deter potential suitors. Outwardly confident and carefree, inside she’s disillusioned with both men and love. There’s only one person who’s never bought her act—the only man who makes her heart race: Tristan Montgomery, one of her family’s greatest rivals.

ONE SCANDALOUS BARGAIN
Wickedly proper architect Tristan needs a respectable woman to wed, but he’s never stopped wanting bold, red-headed Carys. When she mockingly challenges him to show her what she’s missing by not getting married, Tristan shocks them both by accepting her indecent proposal: one week of clandestine meetings, after which they’ll go their separate ways. But kissing each other is almost as much fun as arguing, and their affair burns hotter than either of them expects. When they find themselves embroiled in a treasonous plot, can they trust each other with their hearts, their secrets…and their lives?

My Review:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I loved this tension-filled enemies-to-lovers romance. Carys is fiery and passionate, Tristan is cool and collected – at least on the outside. Their families have been feuding for hundreds of years, and Maddie and Gryff’s marriage in the previous book haven’t completely mended things between their families.

I love the ‘forbidden love because of feuding families’ trope, and here it’s used excellently. Carys and Tristan are both loveable, endearing characters as well and their chemistry sizzles from the beginning. Gotta love a ‘we’re both secretly in love with each other and have been since we were kids but we pretend to hate each other and pine dramatically’ dynamic.

The one thing I didn’t love was the sheer number of sex scenes. Now, I will grant that these are included for Reasons and so in some ways they really do need to be there. But I still found myself skimming them. Which is not to say that they’re badly written – I just don’t particularly enjoy reading frequent or prolonged sex scenes. Really, the fact that I read as much of them as I did speaks to the fact that they’re actually quite well-written, and I think that people who do enjoy reading sex scenes will like them a lot.

This book also has possibly the best opening line of any romance, ever. “Lady Carys Davies dressed to meet her blackmailer in the same way she dressed for every other social occasion: scandalously.” Tell me that doesn’t make you want to read more about Lady Carys Davies.

I look forward to reading more Montgomery – Davies romances in the future and will definitely be continuing the series as soon as the next book is available.

*Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing an e-arc for review.

Favorite Quotes:

Lady Carys Davies dressed to meet her blackmailer in the same way she dressed for every other social occasion: scandalously.

“You smile at other men, but with Tristan you glow. It’s like you come alive in his presence. You’re the fire to his ice.”

Looking at Tristan was like leaping into a frigid Welsh stream: One had to prepare.

“Then marry me. Live with me. Let me be your favorite enemy.”

ARC Review: A Reckless Match by Kate Bateman (Ruthless Rivals #1)

Book Cover

Synopsis:

The first in a new regency romance series about two feuding families and reunited childhood enemies whose hatred turns to love.

Maddie Montgomery’s family is in debt, and her hope rests on the rival Davies clan missing their yearly “pledge of goodwill,” ceding the land that separates their estates. With Maddie’s teenage nemesis, Gryffud “Gryff” Davies, Earl of Powys, away, hope is in reach.

But then, Gryff shows up and is stunned that the tomboy he once teased is now a woman. When Gryff and Maddie discover contraband on their land, they realize it can benefit both families. But they’ve also uncovered a dangerous plot, and they need to work together to get out alive. Soon, their hatred for each other starts to feel more like attraction.

Kate Bateman brings crackling banter, steamy romance, and a dash of adventure into the first book in the Ruthless Rivals series.

My Review:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I LOVED this. An enemies-to-lovers where they spent their entire childhoods antagonizing and teasing one another and eventually realize that their younger selves had actually been attracted to each other? Heck yeah. Not only that, but it’s clever and witty and extremely well-written.

Maddie was an opinionated, passionate, spitfire delight, and I loved how intelligent she was. Gryff was a perfect match for her, strong and steady and stubborn. I loved the familys’ long standing feud and can’t wait to read about Carys & Tristan and Harriet & Morgan. I forsee plenty of delightful banter and teasing and passion-disguised-as-hate-and-childhood-antagonism in this series and I am here for it.

I read a Kate Bateman book before and was disappointed in it (actually dnfed it) so I was hesitant to read this one, but OMG I loved it so much. Now I need to revisit the previous one. Maybe it was actually me. I will definitely be picking up Kate Bateman’s books in future.

*Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing an e-arc for review.