(Brothers Sinister #0.5)
Genre: Victorian Historical Romance
She will not give up…
Three months ago, governess Serena Barton was let go from her position. Unable to find new work, she’s demanding compensation from the man who got her sacked: a petty, selfish, swinish duke. But it’s not the duke she fears. It’s his merciless man of business—the man known as the Wolf of Clermont. The formidable former pugilist has a black reputation for handling all the duke’s dirty business, and when the duke turns her case over to him, she doesn’t stand a chance. But she can’t stop trying—not with her entire future at stake.
He cannot give in…
Hugo Marshall is a man of ruthless ambition—a characteristic that has served him well, elevating the coal miner’s son to the right hand man of a duke. When his employer orders him to get rid of the pestering governess by fair means or foul, it’s just another day at the office. Unfortunately, fair means don’t work on Serena, and as he comes to know her, he discovers that he can’t bear to use foul ones. But everything he has worked for depends upon seeing her gone. He’ll have to choose between the life that he needs, and the woman he is coming to love…
I admit that I am totally in awe of Courtney Milan’s books. Whether she is writing full length novels or novellas, her stories are original, her characters are unique and her writing is emotive, evocative and sensual.
THE GOVERNESS AFFAIR, the prequel to the Brothers Sinister series, is a tender, romantic and passionate love story.
Hugo is such a wonderful hero. On the surface he is all ruthlessness and ambition but I saw the chinks in his armour when he treats Serena with such kindness. I love the scene where he takes her some towels, hot tea, sandwiches and an umbrella. It reveals the honourable man lurking just beneath that tough surface and Serena brings out the best in him.
I adore Serena… the way she refuses to be a passive victim and her determination to seek justice for what happened to her. She also has to cope with her agoraphobic sister, Freddy, and the often fraught relationship between them adds another interesting layer to the story.
The romance…the battle of wills, the witty banter, the flirtatious messages, the innovative, tender, sexy ‘pins’ scene, the heart-warming ending… is charming, believable and beautifully realised.
I cheered when Hugo finally told the Duke of Clermont some home truths and successfully turned the tables on him.
I would have preferred the Epilogue to have focused on Serena and Hugo and their HEA but the glimpse of the future heroes of the Brothers Sinister series certainly made me want to read their stories.
THE GOVERNESS AFFAIR has once again confirmed why Courtney Milan is on my auto-buy list. A definite keeper!
REVIEW RATING: 5/5 stars
SENSUALITY RATING : HOT
Read July/August 2013
Brothers Sinister series to date (click on cover for more details):