In Bed With the Devil (Scoundrels of St. James Series #1)

In Bed With the Devil (Scoundrels of St. James Series #1)

by Lorraine Heath

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They call him the Devil Earl—a scoundrel and accused murderer who grew up on the violent London streets. A proper young lady risks more than her reputation when consorting with the roguishly handsome Lucian Langdon, but Lady Catherine Mabry believes she has no choice. To protect those she loves, she would do anything—even strike a bargain with the devil himself.

Lucian desires respectability and a wife above all else, but the woman of his choosing lacks the social graces to be accepted by the aristocracy. Catherine can help Lucian gain everything he wants. But what she asks for in exchange will put their very lives in jeopardy. When danger closes in, Catherine discovers a man of immense passion and he discovers a woman of immeasurable courage. As secrets from his dark past are revealed, Lucian begins to question everything he knows to be true, including the yearnings of his own heart.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061983368
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 10/06/2009
Series: Scoundrels of St. James Series , #1
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 6,941
File size: 523 KB

About the Author

Lorraine Heath always dreamed of being a writer. After graduating from the University of Texas, she wrote training manuals, press releases, articles, and computer code, but something was always missing. When she read a romance novel, she not only became hooked on the genre, but quickly realized what her writing lacked: rebels, scoundrels, and rogues. She’s been writing about them ever since. Her work has been recognized with numerous industry awards, including RWA’s prestigious RITA®. Her novels have appeared on the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists.

Read an Excerpt

In Bed With the Devil


From the Journal of Lucian Langdon

They say my parents were murdered in the London streets by a gang of ruffians. I have no memory of it, yet it has always seemed to me that I should.After all, I was supposedly there, but only if I truly am who the world recognizes me to be.

The Earl of Claybourne.

It is not a pleasant thing to always doubt one's identity. I often study the portrait of my father hanging above the massive fireplace in the grand library of my London residence and catalogue the similarities in our appearance.

The as the soot that lined the inside of a chimney.

The eyes...the shade of pewter that brought a fair price from fences.

The nose...a slender knife-like shape, a fine-honed blade, aristocratic.

Although that similarity might be merely wishful thinking on my part. It's difficult to tell if our noses are truly the same, as mine was severely broken at an early age, the result of an encounter that left me nearly dead. I have always attributed my escape from death's clutches to Jack Dodger, who offered himself up as a target for the abuse being delivered to me. Things went much worse for him. Not that we ever speak of it.

When you grow up on the streets of London you learn about a great many things of which people never speak.

It's my eyes that convinced the old gent who called himself my grandfather that I was indeed his grandson.

"You've got the Claybourne eyes," he'd said with conviction.

And I readily admit that looking into his was very much like looking into a mirror at my own, but still it seemed a rather trite thing upon whichto base so grand a decision.

I was fourteen at the time. Awaiting trial for committing murder. I must confess it was a rather fortuitous moment to be declared a future lord of the realm, as the judicial system was not opposed to hanging young lads who were considered troublesome. I'd developed quite a reputation in that regard. Considering the circumstances of my arrest, I have no doubt I was traveling a swift path straight to Newgate and then the gallows. Having a fondness for breathing, I was determined to do whatever was necessary to escape the hangman's noose.

Because I was brought up under the tutelage of Feagan, the kidsman who managed our rather notorious den of child thieves, I was adept at deceiving people, at pretending to remember things of which I truly had no memory. During a rather intensive inquisition, observed by inspectors of Scotland Yard, I was quite the showman, and the old gent not only declared me to be his grandson, but appealed to the Crown to take the unfortunate circumstances of my life into consideration and to show extreme leniency. After all, I'd witnessed my parents' murder, been stolen and sold into near slavery. Certainly it was understandable that I'd engage in a bit of misbehavior. If returned to his keeping, he vowed to set me back on the righteous path to being a proper gentleman. His request was granted.

And I found myself traveling a far different...and more difficult...road than I'd expected, always looking for the familiar, the evidence that I truly belonged where I now resided. By the time I grew to manhood, by all appearances, I was an aristocrat.

But beneath the surface . . . I remained a scoundrel at heart.

In Bed With the Devil
. Copyright © by Lorraine Heath. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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In Bed with the Devil 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 57 reviews.
Julietsaf More than 1 year ago
I was waiting for a couple books to be released and took a chance on this one. I liked it so much that I read it in a days time! Good thing it's part of a series. What I loved the most was the complexity of its characters and a storyline that was new for me in historical romance novels. Buy this, you won't be disappointed.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In 1851 when Lucian ¿the Devil Earl¿ Langdon enters a ballroom, everyone especially the females turn their eyes away from him society shuns him for allegedly murdering his uncle. However this time when the Earl of Claybourne enters a ballroom uninvited as always, one woman stares right back at him. Lady Catherine Mabry refuses to blink or look away.------------- Raised on London's mean streets as one of Feagan's den of child thieves and urchin con artists, Lucian and his friends Jack and Frannie were rescued by his grandfather. To Catherine, he is the one man strong enough to save her from her ruthless guardian. But she's playing with fire when she propositions the devil. Others may fear him, but she sees his innate goodness. Catherine will do whatever she must to save him from himself and force him to believe in his right to hold the title and her heart. ------------- This is reminiscent of Oliver Twist as an adult treated by the Ton as a murdering scoundrel except for one courageous woman who sees him as her heroic savior, who she hopes lives up to his reputation and proves deadlier than her cruel guardian yet she also discovers the caring nature underneath that begs to belong. Lorraine Heath writes an excellent Victorian romantic suspense that hooks audience from the opening journal entry of Lucien to the closing entry.------------ Harriet Klausner
Abbytt77 More than 1 year ago
A smart, fun-filled romp
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I pick up a Lorraine Heath book, I know I¿m in for a well written, emotionally satisfying story. In Bed With the Devil is exactly this . . . in spades! This is book one in Ms. Heath¿s new Scoundrels of St. James series. ******* He is called the Devil Earl. Lucian Langdon, Earl of Claybourne, grew up differently than other members of the aristocracy¿he was raised on the rough London streets. At the age of six, he was taken in by and became one of `Feagan¿s lads¿, a group of misfits trying to survive the best way they could. At fourteen, Luke was captured and accused of murder, but was spared the hangman¿s noose by a gentleman who claimed that Luke was his long lost grandson and heir. Luke didn¿t believe that he¿s the rightful heir, but didn¿t deny it and went along with the old gent. He isn¿t comfortable with nor accepted into society and for those reasons he doesn¿t attend social functions. That is until the night he attended a ball and saw Lady Catherine Mabry. While there, he couldn¿t take his eyes off of her and was impressed that she boldly returned his gaze. Catherine was shocked, but intrigued . . . and is still intrigued five years later. It is Luke¿s dangerous reputation combined with her need for help that prompts her to seek him out. She would do anything to protect those she loves¿even make a deal with the devil. ******* I absolutely loved Luke. He is a tortured hero that I completely sympathized with. He has flaws, but it is those flaws and how he handles/reacts to them that makes him incredibly endearing. He struggles with inner demons because he believes he¿s not the real earl, but says he is because he didn¿t want to let down the man who saved his life¿a man who truly believed Luke was the rightful earl and who took care of the rest of Feagan¿s lads. Luke is fiercely loyal to his friends and vice versa. They depended upon each other for everything when they were children and are still there for each other as adults. ******* Catherine is a strong, willful heroine whom I admired very much. She is the sole caretaker of her ailing father, the Duke of Greystone, while her brother is off gallivanting around the continent. She is completely devoted to her friend, Winnie, Duchess of Avendale, who is abused by her husband. Her desire to help her friend and stop the abuse is what prompts her to visit Luke and beg for his help. She is fascinated by the wickedness associated with the Devil Earl, but after spending time with him soon discovers that he¿s not what others perceive him to be. I like that Catherine challenges Luke at every turn and speaks her mind without being over the top. ******* In Bed With the Devil is a beautiful redemption story. It is darker and grittier than any of Ms. Heath¿s previous books, but it needs to be to fit the feel of the story. I must say that I was captivated by the secondary characters¿Winnie and the rest of Feagan¿s lads¿and wonder which of them will be featured in the next book in this series. This book is another keeper from Lorraine Heath that I highly recommend! *******
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Truly outstanding, well-rounded, ultra rewarding romantic read! I've loved the Scoundrels of St. James series by Lorraine Heath, and IN BED WITH THE DEVIL did not disappoint. I believe I've read 3 books in entirely the wrong order...but found it did not matter. The stories intertwine splendidly, without diminishing the reading enjoyment of any of the other books. I so enjoyed watching Lord Lucian Langdon, Fifth Earl of Claybourne, pursue his life-long dream of marrying Miss Frannie Darling with single-minded purpose. It was wonderful watching him falling in love with Lady Catherine Maybry, whom he has engaged to teach Frannie everything she needs to know to be comfortable among the aristocracy. Heath did a fantastic job showing us, the reader, the developing romance and proving these two deserved the happiness they found with each other. The romance is enriched by Luke (Lucian)'s sordid past--growing up on the streets of London from age 6 on, after his parents were brutally murdered by street thugs. Luke was taken in by Fagin, a kids man who protected, fed, and taught his gang of child thieves to survive. It was in this cobbled-together family of sorts that Luke found his childhood love for Frannie, and best friends he'd follow into the fires of hell to help, protect, save. I've so enjoyed seeing these childhood friends (now as adults) as secondary characters throughout this series, as well as reading the books in which their romances take center stage. Kudos to the author for keeping each of their characterizations true and consistent. I found this read to be so enjoyable, I hesitated to put it down. In keeping with other books in this series, the sensuality level is high (but not overly graphic), and language (by contemporary American standards) is surprisingly clean. Highly recommended to fans of Regency Romance, Lorraine Heath, and historical romance.
Shortstride More than 1 year ago
The call him the Devil Earl for a reason. Lucian Langdon was a charming, handsome, sexy devil in disguise who falls in love with Catherine, the daughter of a Duke. This story tell about life in a rookery where Luke spent several years with his friends Jack, Swindle, Graves and Frannie thinking he was just like them when all along he was an Earl. Great story Lorraine Heath.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
always some laughter and romance with a little suspense.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
well done story, great characters, good emotional impact.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Highly recommend Very good book
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another good one, loved Catherine and her devil.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great characters and very good story that touch my heart. A must read.
amf0001 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
cliched, unsatisfying and badly written. A bit like after Oliver Twist grows up, then what... Lucien Langdon was seperated from his parents and had to make do on teh streets from age 6 or so. Then through a totally contrived event, he meets with his grandfather and is reinstated (after killing his uncle? unclear on that plot point) Anyways, he is pained and wants to marry the familiar Fannie, a fellow urchin and now working at the casino he's set up. Then he meet Catherine, so good, so pure, so blagh... I didn't believe either of them and was disappointed with the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good and characters are very likable. But story felt really long. Would have been 4 stars but dragged on. Characters are what saved it. Will read the next in the series.
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