I’m a huge fan of romance from the light and fluffy to the dramatic, but there’s something about dark romances that seem to draw me in like dark chocolate with it’s sensual darkness and a tad bitter at times of each taste. Ruthless was very much like my favorite kind of dark romance and chocolate, with heavy dark undertones, a very sensual writing and sad and bitter pasts of both Rohan and Elinor. Both scarred souls whom both had to sacrifice their own happiness in order to keep going on with their lives. At times it was kinda startling how much alike they were, but both fought to the bitter end almost about the feelings they evoked in one another. On one hand we have Elinor whose mother going from one man to another while slowly spiraling out of control and taking her daughters along with her, Elinor has had to pretty much give up everything and in the process losing even her faith by the choices she’s been forced to make. Elinor was a strong lead and could hold her own, but at times she was just too much of a martyr that I felt she became blinded and just seeing it in black and white instead of seeing the big picture. The other side of the coin we have Rohan who was such a sensual beast that everything that rolled off his tongue was pure sin. He was smart, clever and at odds with Elinor whom he wanted to pick apart in order to figure out and put her back together as his own lover. Rohan bloody past forced him into Paris to stay and to become the so-called King of Hell of the Heavenly Host, a club where anything and everything of sin goes on. The toll and boredom on Rohan is great. He loves sex, but he’s become so jaded, that it takes an innocence to open his eyes and his heart. The scars that Rohan and Elinor carry are great, and it takes some forcible push and tug in order for them both the get on the right path. Their banter and fights are always even, and the time they finally do make love it’s always a relief from the teasing nature Rohan puts Elinor and the reader through but the change from hate to love was very sudden that it was somewhat jarring, it wasn’t gradual something that I would have preferred, it doesn’t hinder the story, as it feels sort of out of place for the reader, whose read from 100+ pages of Rohan and Elinor butting heads to then suddenly close to the I Love You. Not to mention the Big Mis. In the end this didn’t stop the almost frantic pace I was reading this book well into the night, I loved ever bit of this book, with the main romance also front and center and the secondary romance keeping pace but thankfully saying secondary. Which pretty much summed up everything about this book. Many of the actions and villain all revolved around the main H/H instead of taking away from- only weaved the story closer into its dark web.Overall: This is my first Anne Stuart book, wonder why I haven’t picked up more of her books, because if all her books are much like Ruthless- am checking out her backlist very soon! A amazing start to the House of Rohan trilogy….