Title: In Total Surrender
Author: Anne Mallory
Series: Secrets, book 3
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Avon Books
Source: Review copy from publisher
“Andreas Merrick is the king of London's dark underworld, having amassed unimaginable wealth and power...and a fierce reputation that leaves even the bravest men quaking in their boots. Yet one person is maddeningly unintimidated by his fearsome presence: the persistent Miss Phoebe Pace.
Equal parts honey and steel, Phoebe will stop at nothing to find her missing brother and save her family. Though associating with Andreas means peril and scandal, she never expects to experience a passion so intense that it threatens to consume her. But enigmatic Andreas is no ordinary man to love. He brings dangers from all sides -- without and within -- while tempting her beyond her wildest dreams…”
In Total Surrender is book three in the Secrets series by Anne Mallory and my first book by this author.
I really enjoyed In Total Surrender even though I had some problems getting into the story. I blame this on the lack of background information about the characters and the issues pertained to the plot. Maybe if I had read previous books I wouldn’t have been as lost as I was on the beginning. What kept me reading were the characters.
If you like a tortured hero you will love Andreas. He is dark, dangerous, smart and the product of a very violent childhood. Because of this he is a man who doesn’t trust and lives for vengeance. He is a recluse who lives for plotting against his enemies and doesn’t interact with many people.
And here comes Phoebe, the perfect heroine. She is clever, sassy, witty, sweet and caring. Circumstances forced Phoebe to take the reins of her family and their business. She designs a plan to save her family and this plan includes Andreas.
Andreas has been attracted to Phoebe since the first moment he saw her but the last thing he wants is a complication in his life, however our Phoebe is a very smart and patient mastermind. When Andreas was less expecting it he finds himself in the middle of Phoebe’s plan, with her shoving her way into his life with subtle actions.
I loved Andreas’ inner dialogue; it was sometimes as amusing as his conversations with Phoebe.
And here Miss Bleeding Sunshine sat, looking as if just this morning she’d been attended by fairies, baked with elves, and had tea with a unicorn.
The secondary characters were somehow flat, even the villain of the story lack of depth, maybe this is a villain that comes from previous books and the information given In Total Surrender wasn’t enough to have a clear imagine of him.
Despite not having much scene time Andreas’ brother Roman was the most interesting of the secondary characters. It was obvious previous book in this series, One Night is Never Enough, was his book.
My final thought: The banter between Andreas and Phoebe made of In Total Surrender a very fun read. As I said before what made this a good book were its characters. Their attraction for each other is clear from page one and from then on the sexual tension between these two just rises and rises until… and here comes my second complaint, after all that sexual tension I was expecting a very sexy steamy scene just to read a scene of allegories, nothing clear. I have to read the same scene more than once to realize that what I was reading was a sex scene!
Still In Total Surrender was an enjoyable read with some unexpected twist and turns and a great hero/heroine combination. This book could be read as a stand-alone but I think you may enjoy it more if it’s read as a part of the series.
My Verdict: 4 Paws
Other books in the series
Seven Secrets of Seduction
One Night is Never Enough
In Total Surrender
Other reviews Goodreads