Friday, January 11, 2013

Intimate Betrayal by Adrienne Basso

Morgan Ashton, Duke of Gillingham is drawn in to the world of spies, much to his chagrin, because some spy activity is being linked to one of his properties. It's in his best interest to aid the government and find out who the real villains are. About the same time that he is made aware of these things, he participates in an auction for a Viscount's country estate - not that he's all that interested, he bids almost as an afterthought. He goes to the won property, on the way to his own, to inspect exactly what he's won. He fully expects to find the Viscount. What he finds instead is a rather shappy estate and the Viscount's daughter Alyssa Carrington is running the estate in the capacity that a man would as a paid estate manager. Morgan is shocked by this state of affairs. Not only is the pretty and very capable running things, but it appears she has been doing so for some time as well as handling the settling of the Viscount's gaming debts. He is also surprised that nobody has informed Alyssa that the property has been auctioned off. One reason, other than the fact that her father has never given her or her welfare much consideration, is that word arrives that her father has committed suicide. Alyssa is devastated - if for no other reason than the little nest egg that she has been putting aside for the day when something like this may happen is eaten away by her father's other debts. In the end she secures a position of supervising the refurbrishing of Westgate Manor for Morgan's family members. During this time he and Alyssa engage in a very passionate affair. The start of this is a HUGE misunderstanding. Morgan proposes Alyssa be his mistress but he unintentionally phrases it so that she believes he is proposing marriage. I was surprised the misunderstanding went on as long as it did. When they both clearly understand each other, it understandably leads to very hurt feelings. Alyssa winds up pregnant and they end up marrying. The one thing I disliked about this book was how long the enstrangement between the two lasts. It goes on too long for my tastes.

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