Wednesday, April 18, 2012
This is the basic story arc - The old Duke of Durham died. Somebody was trying to blackmail/upset the family by stating that they know the details of the Duke's 1st (and never terminated) marriage when he was younger. If proof was revealed, his 2nd marriage would be proven bigamous thereby making his three children bastards and losing their inheritance. The three children are Charlie (oldest), Edward, and Gerard (youngest). This book is about Gerard, the youngest and soldier of the family. His plan was to try and search out the blackmailer. Even if they solidified their claim on their inheritance, he would still only be a third son so his other current purpose is to find a rich wife. He is not totally mercenary. He wants to find somebody who he can talk to and have a satisfying marriage with as well as get a fortune in the bargain. Katherine Howe is a widow with a large bank account. However, she is getting pressure to marry her late husband's heir (somebody she finds thoroughly disagreeable for many reasons) but also......she had a tendre for Gerard when they were younger, even though he doesn't remember her.
I like this book for a few reasons. I like the characters. I like the women Linden creates. Usually they are not total knockouts, but neither are they hags - they are real. Which means a heroine who might be considered "plain" but who has beautiful blue eyes, or a fantastic smile, or any number of things that make them stand out. The interactions between the hero & heroine were interesting & good (you got things from both point of views). Enough sizzle balanced with enough good story. Although I personally would have liked it if a piano would have dropped on Katherine's mother.