1st in a new series with strong possibilities.
The central characters are vigorous although switching between happenings is occasionally disjointed.
Bereaved Vivienne Beaumont has a heart of gold, is virtuous and has the looks to slay armies.
Max Sinclair (Sin), bastard son of a lord, has attitude, great sorrow, a vengeful heart and the ability to slay armies.
Max is one of three owners of the Underground, a notorious gaming club for the wealthy in London's darker side.
Max and Vivienne meet in an out of the way London churchyard where Max is viewing the grave of one of his enemies. Max's mother was brutally killed and abused when he was a young boy. Max is actively seeking the perpetrators to take his revenge. Vivienne is contemplating what charitable works of her mother's she will continue to support, including the nuns who tend the gardens here. Vivienne thinks that Max's dog Ransom is a wolf and frightens her.
Vivienne's time of mourning for her mother has come to an end. Her mother died a small time after marrying Lord Ellis Downing, Earl of Huntley, who is encouraging Vivienne to take up her life again. What with Vivienne's mother's marriage and then sudden illness, Vivienne knows little about her stepfather.
Vivienne decides that Max should be her charitable cause. Now why Vivienne thinks she must reform Max is where things get hazy for me. Still it is one way of them coming together. Of course the reformation goes two ways--not at all in the way Vivienne expected. Who knew this greaving young woman could throw of the shackles of respectability so quickly--but perhaps it's the greaving factor.
Then there's the shadowy stepfather!
The other owners of the club have problems barely hinted. Yet those hints set up the future direction of the Bastards of London stories.
The Den of Iniquity delves into tried and tested theme of innocence meets sinful rake with some interesting results.
A NetGalley ARC