Dirty English by Ilsa Madden-Mills @ilsamaddenmills
The classic tale, Pride
and Prejudice, was the inspiration behind the story told in Dirty English - A
modern-day, steamy romance between a sexy underground fighter and a girl whose
life was shattered. The first thing to grab my attention was the outrageously
delectable cover. Wow, I could stare at that all day. However, the story is
more than it’s cover. It’s about surviving horrific traumas, self-preservation,
the desperate struggle to achieve happiness and the healing power of love. Both
main characters, Elizabeth Bennett and Declan Blay, are haunted by the demons
from the past, which affect their outlook on life and relationships.
Elizabeth’s spirit is
broken. A poor ‘trailer park’ girl raised by a neglectful mother learned the
lesson of betrayal after being utterly destroyed by her high-school sweetheart.
Left battered and devastated, Elizabeth barely survived the brutal violation
suffered at the hands of her bastard scum of an ex-boyfriend.
This became a
turning point for Elizabeth. Starting over, she focuses on her college
education and plans every detail in her life. Vowing to never place her heart
and trust into the hands of a man again, she takes drastic measures to regain
the power, which was stolen from her.Everything
was going according to plan, until she meets the incredibly sexy neighbor/classmate,
Declan - A hunky Brit that’s working his way into her world.
Elizabeth is a likable
girl – stubborn, sassy and determined. The flashbacks to her past were
difficult to get through. Although it was not overly detailed, there was the
element of sexual assault, and that’s never an easy thing for me to read.
Seeing that within the story line, I understood Elizabeth’s mindset. Despite
the attraction to Declan, she has good reason to remain closed off emotionally.
I will say that eventually, her stubbornness got to me. Declan made great
efforts to be gentle and considerate of her situation. For a major part of the
story, she gave the appearance that sex was merely a battle for control,
without the entanglement of emotions. She fought too hard against Declan’s
sincerity and feelings of love.
is the super hot, tatted and muscular college student/underground fighter
dealing with his own relationship issues.
Getting over the betrayal of his ex, he’s focused on education, gaining
independence from a judgmental and overbearing father, and opening up his own
gym. His painful past affected him as well – dealing with the loss of his
mother as well as infidelity. Declan is hesitant to lay his heart on the line,
until he develops strong feelings for Elizabeth. Intrigued and enamored, he is
determined to break through her fortress to gain her heart and trust.
Declan’s tenacity, his strength and over-protectiveness when it came to dealing
with Elizabeth. She was a tough nut to crack, but knowing she was guarded, he
never hid his true feelings. Showered her with so much affection, especially
when she fought against his efforts. Declan was way beyond patient in dealing
with the push and pull angst Elizabeth created. (Which honestly, he was so
sweet, she ticked me off at times). Behind all his rugged, bad-boy exterior was
a gentle and sincere man. And he definitely was scorching in the bedroom.
Declan (as well as his
sexy twin…Dax) made the story for me. But, I wanted more from his character. More
of his back and forth banter with Dax, a deeper look into his strained
relationship with his father (which was a major force in shaping the man he has
become) and more time dedicated to his relationship as a couple with Elizabeth.
Never the less, his character won me over quickly. He was a totally
Dirty English was a well-written
sweet read filled with heartache and joy. Told in dual points of view, Ilsa
Madden-Mills has a way of creating broken characters I can’t help but adore.
Looking forward to Declan’s sexy twin…Dax’s story. He’s certainly one interesting,
smart ass kind of guy and I can’t wait to see inside his crazy head.