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4.2 out of 5
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    A wonderful, gorgeous story!

    Gabrielle Flood is being daring. While her employers at Brittle & Sons, Printers, are away on holiday in Bristol, Gabrielle “borrows” the printing type from her workplace to bring to her flat and show her gravely ill grandmother, for whom it will be the grandest joy. No one will ever know. Unfortunately, on her way home with her treasure, an unfortunate accident happens, which for Gabrielle means certain ruination. She will lose her job, and she and her beloved grandmother, who already barely have enough to live on, will be destitute. What Gabrielle couldn’t know is that the handsome scoundrel, who inadvertently caused her misfortune, is definitely not as bad as she had first thought… What an indescribable delight joy it is to experience the wondrous Katharine Ashe at her most elegant, her wittiest, her absolute best! Said scoundrel is Captain Anthony Masinter, one of the most beautiful characters ever created by Ms. Ashe. He is dashing, honest, honourable, and utterly irresistible! Gabrielle is very straightforward, a stickler for proper speech, which leads to some of the most splendid and amusing exchanges as she corrects Anthony’s grammar. The author did some serious research into printing, and I devoured every word. Katharine Ashe is a brilliant writer, and her prose in THE SCOUNDREL AND I is simply dazzling: so rich, luminous, eloquent, as well as delightfully clever. I read a good part of the book with a silly smile on my face, which is saying a lot as just before I had finished a book that had left me feeling angry, which illustrate how wonderful THE SCOUNDREL AND I truly is; being able to convey such feelings of happiness to a reader is a precious gift from an author. But not everything is all laughs; one character has a devastating secret, and it made this magnificent story even grander! This is going to be hard to describe, but it’s another quality to this amazing book: I had an impression of movement throughout, there is an airiness to the story, a lightness to the characters and the romance that is wonderfully pleasant. Anthony and Gabrielle complete each other magnificently, and the romance is absolutely divine! I felt their chemistry, their respect for each other, their connection, and their backstories are enthralling. I loved THE SCOUNDREL AND I as much as one can love a book! THE SCOUNDREL AND I is a long novella, and if all that beauty, wit, glorious writing weren’t enough, Katharine Ashe treats us to the most stupendous exchange of letters between of Lady Justice and Peregrine of the Falcon Club Series, and that alone would qualify as reason enough to read this astounding book! I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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    Crash into love Regency-style

    Printshop assistant Gabrielle Flood never intended to steal valuable typeface from a rare printing press in her employers' office while they were away. She only meant to allow her blind grandmother to feel the letters a broadsheet beneath her fingers one last time before she took her final breath, but when Captain Anthony Masinter's horse came barreling down the street and nearly ran over her, knocking the tray of typeset out of her hands, Gabrielle ended up 53 with pieces unrecoverable and her job hanging in the balance. Bound by honor to help Gabrielle find a way out of her mess, Anthony soon finds himself falling for her charms. But having been hurt in the past, Gabrielle guards her heart zealously. Given the rarity of the press, will Gabrielle and Anthony find a way to recover the missing pieces before the printshop owners return? Will Anthony be able to break through Gabrielle's defenses and win her heart, or will she find that her reluctance to trust in him is justified? This novella is a delightful quick read. Gabrielle and Anthony's witty banter is endearing and authentic. Anthony's struggle with what modern readers will recognize as dyslexia adds the perfect touch of human frailty to the handsome, debonair, larger-than-life, sea captain, war hero and saviour of widows and orphans to make him an evolved hero rather than merely a caricature. The love story is well developed with the female lead playing a refreshingly strong role. As befits her strong personality as a female earning a wage and maintaining her own household, Gabrielle is no simpering miss in the bedroom either. This was my first Katharine Ashe read, but it won't be my last.
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