"That was his great ambition for the family, Edmund - the red griffins that our ancestors carried proudly into battle became nothing more than whimsical decorations on the back of cards that were meant to be used once, then thrown away."
After her father's bankrupcy and death, Atalanta James swears to wreak revenge on the men who cheated her father in his final card game. To make that revenge all the sweeter, she plans to beat them at their own game. Having spent her time and money practicing the art of cards, Atalanta is finally in London and ready to set her revenge and redemption in motion. The only problem is, one of the original players, the Earl of Stoke has passed on, and his son is not the evil old man she has always planned on ruining. Richard Stanton, the new Earl of Stoke, is intrigued by Miss James, a woman determined to play at a man's game - and win! Could it be that his own father had played a part in ruining her family?
My Opinion: This is a really enjoyable read. Atalanta is a very full character who is determined to do right by her family. I love her strength and skill. Stoke is a good example of a moral character faced with a moral dilemma - to help Alalanta right a wrong, or to protect his father's good name. Atalanta almost must face her own dilemma as she tries to wreak revenge on those she believed to have wronged her family. The interplay between the two characters is fabulous really enjoyable. I love the twists and turns that are encountered by the main characters as they fall in love and discover who they are. I'd highly recommend this one.