I love to read and I love to read Romance. Any kind of romance. Although, I always come back to Historical Romance. I'll also read Urban Fantasy, Historical Mysteries and Historical Fiction.
A misunderstood hero, who's ugly past keeps sticking to him like glue and a somewhat stiff and proper heroine who isn't easy to like. For me, that makes for interesting reading.
So we have a puppet master, the Duke of Montford. He has "collected" orphan children of kins over the years and then sets them up for advantageous marriages to further his agenda to enlarge the family prestige and coffers.
Or something like that. They are basically his wards.
The heroine came to him when she was 8 years old.
He arranged her marriage and she is now a widow as we start the novel. And the will her dead hubby leaves behind splits the estate between her and a cousin, Constantine, who will now inherit. He has the estate, she has the money and from this it seems there seems but one solution, they must marry. Seems simple enough, but it isn't.
I really liked that both had a lot of learning to do of each other. She was not very approachable and for me it was a bit hard to like her. Not sure if I ever quite completely warmed up to her. But somehow it all worked for me. The two have a kind of chemistry that cuts through all of her stiffness and it also opens up his hardened heart. It really is the slow getting to know one another what makes this romance.
A great start to a series and I am looking forward to reading the next. I do want to find out more about the Duke of Montford and Lady Arden and their rivalry about setting up these marriages. Its a bit distasteful, but I am intrigued nonetheless.