Responsible, disciplined William Fox channeled his love for art and his faith in the rules into being an FBI Art Crimes agent. Right and wrong, justice and injustice—the differences are clear, and Will has spent his career drawing a line between them. Maybe his convictions have cost him relationships, but he’s not willing to compromise what he knows is right. Until the night he meets Amory Vaughn.
As the head of his family’s philanthropic foundation, Vaughn knows very well that being rich and powerful can get him almost anything he wants. And when he meets endearingly grumpy and slightly awkward William Fox, he wants him more than he’s wanted anything. Vaughn is used to being desired for his name and his money, but Will doesn’t care about either.
When Vaughn falls back on old habits and attempts to impress Will by stealing a painting Will admires, their nascent bond blows up in his face. But Vaughn isn’t willing to give up on the glimpse of passion he saw the night he took Will apart. Before Will knows it, he’s falling for the man he should have arrested, and Vaughn has to realize that some things can’t be bought or stolen. Love has to be given freely. But can a man who lives by the rules, and a man who thinks the rules don’t apply to him, ever see eye to eye?
Heart of the Steal is a standalone romance with a happy ending. It features a Southern gentleman who thinks he’s always right, a buttoned-up FBI agent who secretly likes his buttons unbuttoned, and wall sex. And desk sex. And picnic blanket sex.
Wow, okay. There was a reason why I was a bit hesitant to get this book and it spent a few months on my Kindle before I attempted to start it and actually forced myself to get beyond chapter one. The blurb was pretty clear about unprofessional professional trope, but I suppose I hoped that the authors could write something that at least would made me swallow this trope. No such luck.
Will and Amory meet at the art related party which Will's sister Charlotte (aka Charlie) was hired to cater. This is Charlie's chance to get new clients, could be make or break of her career, so as always she insisted her brother should come ( and if needed to help her out).
Will meets Amory, super generous, very rich patron of arts ( he leads the foundation that supports many different projects) and lo and behold they have sex during the party amongst all the beautiful paintings - they are that attracted to one another. Only we don't know yet to what extent Amory is attracted. Will especially admired one of the paintings and Amory wants to continue their um bidding friendship with sex, so what do you do when you want to WOO somebody?
I know, I know. YOU STEAL THE PAINTING THE GUY ADMIRED FROM THE PARTY AND DELIVER IT TO HIS DOOR STEPS.
Only oops, Will's profession is revealed, he works in the arts division of FBI and he realized that he now needs to go and arrest Amory Vaugn.
One guess as to whether he did. Oh he tried, but eventually one of them dropped his pants indeed, sorry I cannot be bothered to go and double check who. It was so ridiculous I started laughing.
As I said, I expected to be bothered by FBI agent's conduct, but hoped to be convinced. What I really didn't expect is to laugh and roll my eyes at hilariously bad characterization of Amory. Tell me again, why super rich patron of arts ( he genuinely likes to support student artists and other people who struggle - not like his foundation is a fraud, he inherited it from his parents and spent a lot of time running it) need to have stealing business on the side? That's a serious question, because the character was giving me a whiplash. He says he cannot call himself a Robin Hood because he steals for himself, then he talks about all kinds of things he could do and he does not have to steal for years.
So is that super smart and super rich genius thinks that if he met the guy for the first time it is totally okay to reveal that he is a thief? Because Will gets it all right, was hard not to get it. I just can't with this book.
Oh and hey, apparently since he can not steal for years, now he needed to steal two paintings one after another. Why? I skipped to the end after chapter 12 and there was a monologue at the end, something about changing the world or art not being the art.
To Steal a Heart is my first book by K.C. Bateman, and I've already bought the next book. It was that good! Ms Bateman has delivered a well-written book and furnished it with phenomenal characters. Marianne and Nic's story is loaded with suspense, action, humor and sizzle. This book will grab your attention at the first page and keep you riveted until the last. I totally enjoyed reading To Steal a Heart and look forward to reading more from the talented K.C. Bateman in the future. To Steal a Heart is book 1 of the Secrets and Spies Series but can be read as a standalone. This is a complete book, not a cliff-hanger.
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A Loveswept title! I'm so glad they are publishing again & have branched out into historicals. I didn't realise they were publishing historicals until I came across "To Steal a Heart". It's all very exciting as I devoured these from my local library when I was in high school and they really cemented my love for romance novels :) It felt like a happy reunion reading a Loveswept & what a great debut for K.C Bateman! As well as writing romance and c-owning an auction house, she also appears in Bargain Hunt which I love watching! Double yay! Romance & historical information, what an arsenal she has under her belt!
This book is well written and fast paced with interesting characters and an intriguing historical period of the French Revolution. It was an absolute delight to read! Marianne Bonnard works for a circus in Paris as a tightrope walker. She is also the best thief in Paris! Nicolas Vallard, a spy for Joseph Fouché of The Secret Police, needs her skills for an important mission. He catches her trying to plant incriminating papers in his home, plotted by her evil cousin Duval who controls Marianne & her sister Sophie's lives. Forced into servitude to Duval, Marianne is always looking out for her sister & looking for ways to escape his clutches. This presents itself in the way of Nicolas Vallard who rescues them both but also steals Marianne's heart in the process!
I loved both Marianne & Nicolas! Marianne is a feisty heroine & I admired her strength, courage & attitude. She's a hard woman to break even though life had been unkind to her. Nicolas is a strong hero who is strong, driven and sensual. Just the perfect match for Marianne! The characters & language were very modern with a historical backdrop. I didn't feel thoroughly immersed into historical France but had France as the setting. It didn't bother me too much, but it was definitely noticeable. I loved the last scene of the book which was the proposal! I found it utterly romantic & he proposed with a necklace! My husband proposed to me the same way with a necklace instead of a ring, so I might be biased ;)
A thoroughly enjoyable read & I'm really looking forward to reading about Raven & Heloise in the next installment :)