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Ratings and Book Reviews (2 7 star ratings
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  • 2 person found this review helpful

    2 people found this review helpful

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    Exceptional, must-read historical romance

    Young and charming Cara di Montessori, a nobleman's daughter, must flee her ancestral home amidst one of the interfamilial feuds that define the political landscape of the Italian High Renaissance. Albeit very reluctantly, she is forced to seek the help from Alessandro "Il Diavolo" del Sarto, a cynical and unscrupulous mercenary leader. In exchange, Del Sarto demands Cara's unconditional allegiance, a pact with a devil who appears to be both a Renaissance Man with broad scholarly interests, and an oh-so handsome Machiavellian male chauvinist. Del Sarto, in his turn, comes to realise that Cara is the original Renaissance Woman; smart, strong, resourceful, and fiercely independent. And utterly irresistable. Clearly, The Devil has met his very own demon. Torn between the urge to escape his clutches, or letting herself descend into the ninth circle of hellish bliss, Cara struggles to learn the true value of her deal with this particular Devil. Just like her three previous, Regency-era historical romances, British writer K.C. Bateman's latest work resonates with authenticity, from the description of the classic tomes in Del Sarto's library to the intricate social mores and risqué Saint Agatha's nipple pastries of late-15th century Italy. This should come as no surprise given mrs. Bateman's background as an art auctioneer and antiques expert, frequently featured on popular BBC antiques shows. Having actually visited the locations she describes, she seamlessly combines historical fact with romantic fiction, and admirably succeeds in capturing the 15th-century Italian ambiance. And not one to stop writing at the undoing of the top button of a heroine's silk-embroidered chemise only to leave the rest up to the reader's imagination (or lack thereof), K.C. Bateman shows us the full, steamy experience of what a genuine lover's tale should include, right up to 'la petite mort'. But steamy scenes alone do not a good story make. Thankfully, Cara has inherited the same indomitable spirit and capacity for sharp repartee we've come to associate with the strong women characters in mrs. Bateman's novels. Alessandro del Sarto appears to be very much the product of his life as a 15th-century soldier of fortune, a cynical and secretive alpha male. But as the tale progresses, we're made privy to The Devil's inner turmoil as he's starting to realise that his lust for young Cara is merely a by-product of love, that most annoying and complicated of emotions. As a male fan of the genre, I found Alessandro's tormented train of thought utterly convincing; let's face it, we men are totally defenceless when it comes to mrs. Bateman's insights into the male psyche. A fluid writing style, intriguing storyline, adventure, authentic historical ambiance and above all, the smouldering but complex passion of Cara and Alessandro, make The Devil To Pay stand out as an exceptional, must-read historical romance. Enjoy.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

    1 people found this review helpful

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    Loved it!

    The Devil to Pay by K.C. Bateman is the story of Cara di Montessori and Alessandro del Sarto. Cara 'Uncle' Lorenzo killer her father and now is out to kill her so that he can have possession of Castelleon. Cara escaped the massacre and traveled to find Alessandro who has worked with her father and is a killer for hire. Cara just wants to avenger her father's death and to get her home back with its people. But she hasn't seen Alessandro for about six years when she was 16 years old and he kissed her. Alessandro is taken a 'break' after being hurt and his friend/partner is trying to get him to settle into marriage to make a good alliance. But Alessandro has no desire to marry at this time and scoffs at him. But then Cara sneaks into his room to get his help which he tries to send her on her way but they end up coming to a deal. But will this deal be enough since their feelings are starting to grow? Wow...this book was just wonderful. Loved their story and was not able to put it down. Loved it!!!
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