Galen, Shana. The Rogue You Know. Naperville, IL: Sourcebooks Casablanca, 2015.
Paperback | $7.99 USD | ISBN-13: 978-1402298745 | 345 pages | Regency Romance
This may be my favorite of Shana Galen’s books so far. While there is a balance of the same elements that are signature to Galen’s work, such as the meeting of the glittering ton with the darker elements of life, the characters of Susanna and Gideon are some of the most interesting I have read.
I can’t recall many romances where the heroine truly comes of age, as she is usually pretty self-sufficient already, so I found this one refreshing. Susanna’s naivete could have been annoying if executed poorly, but all of her desires and actions were consistent with her character and motivations. And in a genre that is so often focused on the love between the couple, often in defiance of the cold, disapproving parental figures who end up alienated from them by the end of the book, it was wonderful to read about Susanna’s relationship with her mother and how that evolved, with Lady Dane going from keeping her daughter a prisoner of her gilded cage to encouraging her to be happy, as well as pursue a second chance with the man she loved.
I also loved Gideon’s growth. He has shown potential to be more than a thief in both this book and the prior one, and despite his outward devil-may-care attitude, he shows he really does care for Susanna.And it was refreshing, after reading a number of Galen’s books where the power dynamic was largely skewed in the favor of the heroes to see a hero who had a life without a lot of advantages, and how he managed to turn it around, even when I thought it might be impossible.