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‘A Rogue of My Own’ a summer must-read

“A Rogue Of My Own” by Johanna Lindsey; Pocket Books, $25.99 (hardcover)

By LEZLIE PATTERSON

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

Through the years, Johanna Lindsey’s stories have softened quite a bit to the point that readers can look forward each summer to an easy, enjoyable read that will linger with them.

Gone —and thankfully so — are the harder edged heroes who behaved unforgivably (or at least nearly so) until they realized the err of their despicable ways and promised undying devotion to their maligned heroines.

But that doesn’t mean Lindsey’s heroes have turned soft. Definitely not.

In fact, her latest book, “A Rogue of My Own” is a very slight throwback to the old days, when the hero acted very unherolike for much of the book.

Rupert — who briefly was introduced to readers two years ago as a silly, fop-like dandy in “The Devil Who Tamed Her” — is the title character in the title of Lindsey’s latest book. We discover that Rupert isn’t exactly the frivolous fop he was introduced as. In fact, he’s an accomplished spy who only dresses as a dandy to irritate his mother, when she’s around.

His “beauty” and good lucks are often used to help him fight for crown and country, and his reputation as a rogue and connoisseur of women is widely known.

Rebecca knows all of this. She’s smart, honest and certainly no one’s fool. Still, she can’t help falling in love with Rupert.

Rupert’s downfall is in not believing Rebecca, who is always forthright and honest with him. This leads him to treat her with disdain and hostility, but since Rebecca refuses to play the role of simpering miss and defends herself against his nastiness quite well, it’s not as difficult to take.

Even when Rupert discovers Rebecca has been honest — which means admitting he’s been acting despicable — he stumbles on making amends. Since that sets up a pretty nice reconciliation, it can be forgiven.

“A Rogue of My Own” is a delightful, easy read that will have you instantly embracing and cheering for the heroine, who is simply awesome. This is one of the summer’s must reads.

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