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Touch of a Rogue [Paperback]

Mia Marlowe

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Book Description

4 April 2012
Jacob Preston has three requirements for a woman desiring access to his bed: She must be enthusiastic in affairs of passion, jaded in matters of the heart, and - to ensure the first two qualifications - she must be married. Lady Julianne Cambourne's unmarried status should render her firmly off limits. Instead, it proves a temptation, especially when she comes to him in desperation, looking for the kind of answers only he can give. For, beyond his rakish reputation, Jacob is known for the mysterious power of detection he commands through his sense of touch. And Julianne, surrounded by secrets that threaten to ensnare her in a deadly trap, will do whatever it takes to recruit his skills...using every form of persuasion at her disposal...

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More About the Author

Mia Marlowe has always been a dedicated Anglophile and is proud her ancestors came to America from England. Of course, since they made the trip in the 1600's, it probably means they were in a spot of trouble in the UK, but she tries not to dwell on that. Especially since she loves setting her historical romances in England, Scotland and Ireland (along with a few Viking tales that wander a bit further afield.)

Mia's work was featured in the Best of 2010 edition of PEOPLE magazine. She regularly receives starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and raves from other review sites. Her books have been translated into over nine different languages and she will pass the twenty published novels milepost in 2013. For more info, visit

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.2 out of 5 stars  17 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Overall enjoyable read, but I didn't love it. 11 Mar 2012
By EdynzTrybe - Published on
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at:
readersedyn (dot) blogspot (dot) com


Julianne is in a bit of a quarry. Her husband has been dead about a year. She believes his death was not a suicide as it was ruled, but a murder. Her step-son is about her age and has never liked her. He is now threatening to cut her off if she doesn't marry his friend, who Julianne abhors. She has also been contacted by an unknown individual. Her husband had obtained some ancient daggers prior to his death. Through hard work and determination, he located 5 of the set of 6. The anonymous person had demanded all 6 daggers. He will pay Julianne handsomely should she deliver, or withdraw the offer at the end of the deadline set. The problem is that she doesn't have any ides where the final dagger lays. If she manages to deliver the daggers the money would take care of her and she wouldn't have to worry about being cut off by her step-son. Her biggest fear is that she will have to close down the home for young girls with nowhere to go without the funds to support it. Could she possibly have anything else to deal with? Enter Jacob.

Jacob is a well known rake and woos only women who will be unable to try and trap him onto a permanent arrangement. Mostly, they have to be married. He also has a mysterious gift that allows him to touch a metal object and see the history of said object. While Jacob does not advertise exactly what this gift is, he does embrace his extraordinary talent and aims to put his ability to good use. He also has remarkable intuition and knows immediately when he is being lied to. So Julianne seeks his services out in an attempt to locate the missing dagger.

The two share an immediate attraction and fairly quickly succumb to their desires while simultaneously trying to resist the deeper pull that draws them together. Jacob does not tell Julianne much about his gift initially, but she is a clever woman and is able to deduce much from her observations. Once everything is out on the table, they begin to work together more effectively and begin conquering their difficulties one at a time. They have a dagger to locate, an anonymous buyer to expose, a secret society suspected of wanting the dagger to infiltrate, countless other dangerous possibilities, and the biggest obstacle of all to overcome ... acknowledging their deep feelings for one another.

Overall, I enjoyed this book, but it did have a couple of faults. I liked both main characters, but I didn't fall in love with them. Their wit and humor was absolutely fabulous and is possibly the component that made the book for me. I love snark and Ms. Marlowe excelled at it.

The problem, I think, is that there was just too much going on in the book to make it flow seamlessly. First, Julianne used to be an actress. She married an older man, but she had no title what-so-ever. While marrying below station is not outside the realm of possibility, I don't know that her status as a former start of the stage served any purpose other than to mention it here and there. I was also a bit taken back by Jacob's power. I read the blurb, but his power is more so in the genre of paranormal ability. I wasn't expecting an entire paranormal component as this book is listed as a historical romance. Not that I didn't enjoy Jacob's ability. It was out-of -the-box and added a bit of excitement to the story. It was just unexpected. One thing that I missed was that this is the second book in series. Jacob's family is peppered with gifted individuals in alternate forms of ability. Had I read the first book, perhaps everything would have made a bit more sense to me. I think the book blurb just barely touched on the contents of the book and so a lot is left to discover within the book. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but it could be slightly misleading to the readers as far as expectation.

Another thing I found odd was that there was no resolution to the step-son issue. He just kind of dropped out of the story. He was mentioned a few times and then, POOF, nothing. He is, quite possibly, an unnecessary character. In the end, other than a few missives sent to tell Julianne to get her butt back to the estate to marry his friend, he served very little purpose. And finally, the ending. The book worked up to this final "battle" if you will and then just ends. There could have easily been another chapter or two or even an epilogue. Anything to keep the book from ending to suddenly. It was like introduce all of the problems, work up to the climax, climax, BOOM, over. GAH! In fact I think that is what I said when the book was over. "Gah! Are you kidding me? That's it?" I thought I had another chapter at least, but it was a segment taken from the first book. I felt a bit let down with the abrupt ending. In fact, abrupt is even too long in meaning to describe the ending as it was only a matter of a few paragraphs. The showdown of sorts between good versus evil and about five paragraphs following. The ending was actually unfortunate because even with the pointless past and character, I still didn't count my time spent reading the book as wasted. With the rushed ending, I have to re-evaluate my feelings. I only hope that as an uncorrected proof, the ending was given a bit of a makeover.

So here is what I think. If you are a fan of the author, you are probably going to like the book regardless. If you have read the first book, you will know what to expect with this one and not be in store for any unexpected aspects. If I had the chance for a do-over, I would definitely read the first book prior. Hindsight from book one may have given be a bit better understanding before beginning this book. If you enjoy historical romance with a paranormal slant, you will very possibly find this book to your liking. For those who dislike abrupt endings and details that could be interpreted as superfluous, I caution you: You may well enjoy the read until the end. Like I said, I did enjoy the book for the most part, but it could have been better.

(Uncorrected paperback proof provided by Kensington for review.)
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Touch of a Rogue by Mia Marlowe 16 Mar 2012
By Kissablysweetone - Published on
Lord Cambourne was said to have committed suicide. A dagger through his heart. His wife, Julianne, had serious doubts about the suicide. It just didn't fit who Lord Cambourne was. To prove it, she set off for London to seek the help of Jacob Preston. Jacob was known to have solved what seemed to be unsolvable crimes before. Julianne had high hopes he could help her find out the truth about her husbands death. Little do either of them know trying to unravel this mystery will lead them into places they never would have dreamed of looking into. Jacob's unusual talent comes in handy throughout their investigation. Julianne is convinced Jacob is addicted to opiates. Their feelings for each other grow deeper with each passing day and they wonder what will become of them after this investigation is complete.

Mia Marlowe paints a very vivid picture for you as she writes this book. The details are what make this one so interesting. Steamy love scenes make this book even more fun to read. I loved the story behind this one. I could almost imagine these characters being real, having lived in the time period. It's always interesting to see how a writer will find a new take on historical romances and Mia Marlowe never disappoints. This is a keeper.

I found no issues with this one.

I gave this one 5 out of 5 books because it was different and exciting.

~Copy of book provided by author in exchange for a fair review
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Second of a trilogy ... wish it were going to be more! 7 Mar 2012
By Marcy W. - Published on
Previous readers of Mia Marlowe's (also has written as Diana Groe and Emily Bryan) books may recognize my name as a reviewer, and will be happy to know that my reaction to this newest of her books hasn't changed from earlier ones. I find Ms Marlowe's writing to be just what I want in an historical romance: characters I'd like to meet, settings that come to life easily and clearly in my mind, sensuality and humor that add to the story but are not 'tacked on', and just plain good story-telling. This trilogy (first was "Touch of a Thief") adds just a bit of the paranormal (not werewolves or vampires, which are fine in their own place, but this kind of book isn't that, for me anyway) to spice things up. Here, our hero gains information from objects when he touches them, and he doesn't like this 'talent' a bit, but can't get away from it. I like this 'touch' of magic because it doesn't require me to completely give up my understanding of the way the world works . . . I just have to take one small step into a different world, and that's fun.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exceptional Read!! 17 May 2012
By Lady in Red - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
I thoroughly enjoy all of Mia Marlowe's novels! I fell for Jacob myself, who wouldn't! Mia has such a way with words and her characters jump off the page and right into my heart! I highly recommend all of her books right back to Maidensong and forward! Thanks for putting a smile on my face and a tear in my eye, Mia! I can't wait to read your next book. You won't be sorry if you purchase a Mia Marlowe book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mystery and Intrigue 3 Aug 2012
By Leah Weller - Published on
Jacob and Julianne's story was an interesting one. It was full of secrets and danger that take you into the underworld of a secret society. Jacob is a rake in the first order who finds himself falling in love with the only woman who can shake his beliefs. The only problem is that she has learned never to give her heart. She's suffered great loss and finds that opening herself up to Jacob can be her salvation instead of her downfall. Jacob and some of his family have powers they've kept hidden from the public. He is a Metal Mage. His is a power with metals. He cannot come close to them without hearing their past and the aftermath is a great pain that takes over his body. The stickler is that Julianne hires him to help her find the last dagger of a set. I enjoyed following them on their journey as they not only uncovered secrets and set them free, but they learned to set their own souls free with a most powerful love.
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