Trent Sinclair is a powerful man; like many romance leading men, he carries grudges far longer than most mortals would, and does not forgive or trust anyone easily. Bryn Matthews lied six years ago, and was sent away from the only home she’d ever known with the Sinclairs. Or did she really lie?
After being abandoned at the alter by Oliver, Viscount Elmont, Rebecca Creighton supports her family by writing penny tracts that sing the praises of a moral life. Then, her former suitor reappears, proposing marriage again. Little does Rebecca know that he has offered for her only because his estranged father has promised to pay Ollie’s debts if does so. For him, it’s Fleet, France, or shackling himself to “the Paragon”–a fate almost worse than prison. Curious, Ollie’s best friend, the poet and philanthropist Sir Michael Fairgrove, disguises himself as a valet to see the plain little shrew for himself.
Kevin Whattling is one step away from Debtor’s Prison, and the only thing that can save him is marriage to an heiress–and fast! To that purpose, he reviews the possible candidates and, to his friends’ shock, selects Miss Eugennia Welch. They hardly seem a suitable match. After all, Kevin is a well-known Corinthian, and Eugennia is the epitome of a bluestocking–and notoriously eccentric at that. However, Kevin arrives–freely admitting his financial distress and subsequent desire to woo her–right as Eugennia is wondering what it would be like if Prince Charming showed up on her doorstep. So, what can be the harm in giving Kevin a chance? She might even learn a little something about boxing along the way.
Joanna Patterson and and Lord Sedgewick Wylie are as different as can be. The former is a clumsy, wool-gathering, bespectacled vicar’s daughter with a tendency to stammer when she’s flustered. Sedge is the pinnacle of fashion, and he can make or break a person’s reputation with a sharp word and a critical glace through his quizzing glass. All Joanna wants is to successfully find a suitable husband for her charge, Harriet. If only she could stop colliding with Sedge–literally–and navigate London society without making a complete cake of herself . . .
Tia Hilton has no interest in marriage or romance for herself. At the same time, she does love matchmaking and her annual Valentine’s Day ball. This year, she aims to find the perfect match for her beloved cousin Robert, Viscount Bainbridge. Robert has other ideas. He knows who his perfect match is already–Tia. If only he can persuade her that romance is not reserved for one day per year . . . Continue reading “Tia’s Valentine”
Phoebe Benedict is prepared for a fight when she shows up (with a kitten) at Simon Clare’s doorstep. After all, he was expecting his sister Diana to come and care for his dangerously ill son, Robert. Instead, Phoebe arrives. Simon Clare is known for his temper, and he has been a recluse since he was injured and scarred by an engine upon which he was experimenting. He is also scarred by his past–one that he would hide from the delectable Miss Benedict. Only her skill with Robert persuades Simon to keep Phoebe on.
“A most rewarding change from Assembly Room and Marriage Mart. Witty, humorous, concisely written, and far more true to the life of those times than most authors would dare. A bloody good read.”
I am opening a review, once again, with a quote from the back cover. Lady Elizabeth is the twenty-eight year old heroine, who has been left in charge of her multiple younger sisters after her father’s death a year earlier. Ever since, she’s been ensconced in the estate’s Dower House, distracted from her duties by her bizarre and remarkable hobby: astronomy. She has discovered a new comet during her nightly vigils, is in correspondance with the leading astronomers of the day, and is preparing to publish her first scientific article. In short, she is totally “unacceptable” as a woman. Then, the new Lord Clanross arrives. A dour, stiff man with a sharp tongue and a dubious background (the family’s black sheep who was never expected to inherit), Clanross quickly alienates Lady Elizabeth. Meanwhile, the charming Lord Bevis, whom Elizabeth refused to marry five years earlier, arrives on the scene. He still holds a torch for her, all these years later . . . Maybe there is hope that a man will accept Lady Elizabeth, in spite of her unnatural hobby?
When Grace Curtis, the daughter of an improvident baronet, inherits nothing but debts, she must make a choice. She can either go into denial about her new poverty as her house falls down around her and the debt collectors pound at her door, or she can accept that she has “slipped.” Not one to enter denial, Grace makes the best choice she can: she sells her father’s manor, settles as many debts as possible, and indentures herself to couple who run a local bakery to settle their enormous bill. Ten years later, at twenty-eight years of age, she has accepted her new station in life. But then, the crotchety Lord Thompson—who has a weakness for Grace’s Quimby Creames and few relatives who treat him as well as she does—leaves her a legacy in his will. A legacy with a big string attached…
When a group of old friends liven up their card game by putting unusual stakes on the table–distasteful duties and worthless old things that they would like to get rid of–it’s all in good fun. That is, until their drunken guest, the young Vicomte Duvalier, offers up his old maiden aunt in exchange for a worthless Irish bog! Disgusted by the wager but constrained by honor to play his hand, the Earl of Rotherham plays to lose. But the woman who shows up on his doorstep is not the dowdy old spinster that he’d been led to expect.
Miss Cecilia Cummings is a cunning matchmaker who loves nothing more than to travel from town to town, bringing couples together. Of course, she herself–at the ripe age of twenty-two–has no interest in marriage: she prefers her independence. Then, she is called to Laycombe, which has been in an uproar since the return of Lord Wickham (a determined bachelor after being abandoned by his first wife). Now, the young lads in the neighborhood are falling over themselves to emulate their stylish hero. While the youths drink, gamble, and spend money like water, their love-interests pine away at home. Determined that Laycombe will be her greatest triumph, Cecilia treats her campaign with Lord Wickham like a war.