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Bombshell
Cover of Bombshell
Bombshell
Hell's Belles Series, Book 1

New York Times bestselling author Sarah MacLean returns with a blazingly sexy, unapologetically feminist new series, Hell's Belles, beginning with a bold, bombshell of a heroine, able to dispose of a scoundrel—or seduce one—in a single night.

After years of living as London's brightest scandal, Lady Sesily Talbot has embraced the reputation and the freedom that comes with the title. No one looks twice when she lures a gentleman into the dark gardens beyond a Mayfair ballroom...and no one realizes those trysts are not what they seem.

No one, that is, but Caleb Calhoun, who has spent years trying not to notice his best friend's beautiful, brash, brilliant sister. If you ask him, he's been a saint about it, considering the way she looks at him...and the way she talks to him...and the way she'd felt in his arms during their one ill-advised kiss.

Except someone has to keep Sesily from tumbling into trouble during her dangerous late-night escapades, and maybe close proximity is exactly what Caleb needs to get this infuriating, outrageous woman out of his system. But now Caleb is the one in trouble, because he's fast realizing that Sesily isn't for forgetting...she's forever. And forever isn't something he can risk.

New York Times bestselling author Sarah MacLean returns with a blazingly sexy, unapologetically feminist new series, Hell's Belles, beginning with a bold, bombshell of a heroine, able to dispose of a scoundrel—or seduce one—in a single night.

After years of living as London's brightest scandal, Lady Sesily Talbot has embraced the reputation and the freedom that comes with the title. No one looks twice when she lures a gentleman into the dark gardens beyond a Mayfair ballroom...and no one realizes those trysts are not what they seem.

No one, that is, but Caleb Calhoun, who has spent years trying not to notice his best friend's beautiful, brash, brilliant sister. If you ask him, he's been a saint about it, considering the way she looks at him...and the way she talks to him...and the way she'd felt in his arms during their one ill-advised kiss.

Except someone has to keep Sesily from tumbling into trouble during her dangerous late-night escapades, and maybe close proximity is exactly what Caleb needs to get this infuriating, outrageous woman out of his system. But now Caleb is the one in trouble, because he's fast realizing that Sesily isn't for forgetting...she's forever. And forever isn't something he can risk.

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About the Author-
  • A life-long romance reader, Sarah MacLean wrote her first romance novel on a dare, and never looked back. She is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of romances translated into more than twenty languages, a romance columnist, and the co-host of the weekly romance novel podcast, Fated Mates. A graduate of Smith College and Harvard University, she lives in New York City.

Reviews-
  • Kirkus

    June 15, 2021
    MacLean kicks off an explosive new series featuring a girl gang in Victorian London. Thirty years old and single, Lady Sesily Talbot is no wallflower. Nicknamed "Sexily," she's known for being scandalous--and she knows how to keep a secret. Two years ago, heartbroken after having been rejected by American businessman Caleb Calhoun, Sesily was approached by the Duchess of Trevescan with a life-changing proposition. She joined a group of women collected by the Duchess who use their skills to take down evil men. Something between fixers and vigilantes, these ass-kicking women--besides the Duchess and Sesily, there are Imogen, "who came with an expertise in things both extremely useful and extremely dangerous," and Adelaide, "whose meek exterior made her a superior thief"--are fearless and are also great friends to each other. Caleb spent most of the past two years across the Atlantic, but now he's back in London. He's always been irresistibly drawn to Sesily, and right away he knows she's up to something. He has his own secrets to keep, though, which preclude him from pursuing a future with her. As they protect each other in dangerous situations, their secrets unravel and passion ensues. This book is a complete pleasure as it seamlessly shifts from nail-biting action to aching romance. It's a celebration of finding joy through living and loving with truth and authenticity. The characters are rich and complex, and the pining between Sesily and Caleb is top-notch. MacLean fans will be thrilled with this much-anticipated pairing and eat up the cameos by characters from earlier books. Another stunner from a Romancelandia favorite.

    COPYRIGHT(2021) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Publisher's Weekly

    June 28, 2021
    Bestseller MacLean (Daring and the Duke) launchers her Hell’s Belles series with a sizzling, adventurous Victorian romance. Thirty-year-old Lady Sesily Talbot’s brazen reputation is well-earned—it’s also a helpful cover for her acts of vigilante justice: no one thinks twice about a notorious lightskirt luring men into dark corners. With a group of multitalented, badass women at her back, Sesily makes a habit of toppling villainous aristocrats, and now she’s plotting to expose the crimes of the horrible Viscount Coleford. Throwing a wrench in this plan is American tavern owner Caleb Calhoun. The pair have been pining for each other for two years, but Caleb’s convinced that his dark past will endanger any woman in his orbit. As resolved as he is to keep his distance, however, he’s equally determined to protect Sesily, and comes to her rescue in ballrooms and bar fights alike. Refreshingly, their relationship’s development hinges on Caleb learning that Sesily is more than capable of protecting herself. Caleb’s defining traits are his unwavering devotion and willingness to martyr himself, but he lacks the wonderful nuance that animates Sesily herself. The highlight is instead Sesily’s fierce, loyal friend group, and readers will be eager to see more of them in future installments. This promises good things to come. Agent: Holly Root, Root Literary.

  • Booklist

    July 1, 2021
    Lady Justice may wear a blindfold, but Lady Sesily Talbot does not. Working with the Duchess of Trevescan, Adelaide Frampton, and Imogen Loveless, Sesily helps tip the scales of justice back in favor of the female population of London by whatever means necessary. In Sesily's case, her willingness to court scandal regardless of the consequences to her reputation leaves her immune from the scrutiny of almost everyone in the ton. Well, everyone except for American Caleb Calhoun. Now back in London after spending two years in Boston, Caleb is convinced Sesily is flirting with danger, and while she might think she doesn't need anyone's help, he plans on being right there by her side just in case. With the splendidly conceived launch to her new Hell's Belles series, RITA award-winning MacLean (Daring and the Duke, 2020) aptly demonstrates that her literary magic never loses its allure by gifting readers with both an extraordinarily memorable cast of characters and a fiercely feminist storyline powered by ample measures of intense sensuality and sharp wit.

    COPYRIGHT(2021) Booklist, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Library Journal

    Starred review from August 1, 2021

    Lady Sesily Talbot has always courted scandal in Victorian London, and she's never been concerned with what others think of her. Her constant flouting of the rules of the ton (Britain's high society) soon leads her to a group of women who use their power and intellect to solve problems where others have looked away. In the recent past, it also led Sesily to Caleb Calhoun, the one man who not only refused her advances but ran away from her; he sailed to the States the day after she confessed her attraction to him. Now, two years later, Caleb is back, and he's distressingly curious about Sesily's clandestine activities. Will danger and espionage draw them together, or will their secrets force them apart once again? MacLean ("Bareknuckle Bastards" series) kicks off a planned series with this feminist historical romance that's full of witty dialogue and plenty of steamy scenes. The plot is well written and fast paced; its twists and turns pull the reader along on Sesily's missions and introduce unforgettable secondary characters. Caleb, who at first seems to be an alpha hero, has radical thoughts, hidden depths, and a willingness to embrace chaos, and he is increasingly likeable as the novel progresses. VERDICT MacLean's dedicated fan base will be eagerly awaiting this novel, but it will also appeal to other romance readers who are unfamiliar with her body of work. Highly recommended for general purchase.--Heather Miller Cover, Homewood P.L., AL

    Copyright 2021 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Julia Quinn, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Bridgerton series

    "Sarah MacLean's books are fierce." — Julia Quinn, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Bridgerton series

    "When a new Sarah MacLean novel comes out, I drop everything to read." — Emily Henry, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Beach Read

    "I recommend anything by Sarah MacLean." — Lisa Kleypas, New York Times bestselling author

    "Smart, sexy, action-packed, propulsive escapism at it's absolute finest. We are lucky to be living and breathing in the Sarah MacLean era." — Christina Lauren, New York Times and #1 international bestselling authors of The Unhoneymooners

    "Sarah MacLean came to slay, not play with Bombshell! In this first installment of her Hell's Belles series, she delivers a stormy, swoony love story, yes, but also a cadre of powerful women who take no sh*t and give as good as they get. Thoroughly modern in its sensibilities and perspective on what women are capable of and still perfectly historical. I'll never get used to how talented this woman truly is." — Kennedy Ryan, USA Today bestselling author

    "It's not summer if you're not getting lost in the lush, sinful world of a Sarah MacLean novel... MacLean delivers a knockout one-two punch of blazing-hot romance and a deliriously feminist girl gang." — Entertainment Weekly

    "MacLean is a master at weaving passion and vulnerability equally in her characters... when it comes to historical romance, she's one of the best." — Vulture

    "Attention, Bridgerton fans! Bombshell by Sarah MacLean is the first installment in a feminist romance series about British aristocrat Lady Sesily Talbot, a fiercely independent woman who's not afraid to go after what—and who— she wants." — Real Simple

    "Bestseller MacLean (Daring and the Duke) launches her Hell's Belles series with a sizzling, adventurous Victorian romance...This promises good things to come." — Publishers Weekly

    "...A celebration of finding joy through living and loving with truth and authenticity...Another stunner from a Romancelandia favorite." — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

    "With the splendidly conceived launch to her new Hell's Belles series, RITA award-winning MacLean aptly demonstrates that her literary magic never loses its allure by gifting readers with both an extraordinarily memorable cast of characters and a fiercely feminist storyline powered by ample measures of intense sensuality and sharp wit." — Booklist

    "MacLean ("Bareknuckle Bastards" series) kicks off a planned series with this feminist historical romance that's full of witty dialogue and plenty of steamy scenes... MacLean's dedicated fan base will be eagerly awaiting this novel, but it will also appeal to other romance readers who are unfamiliar with her body of work. Highly recommended for general purchase." — Library Journal (starred review)

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