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Posts Tagged ‘Scandalous Seasons Series’

(Scandalous Seasons, #6)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Responsible, practical Miss Hermione Rogers, has been crafting stories as the notorious Mr. Michael Michaelmas and selling them for a meager wage to support her siblings. The only real way to ensure her family’s ruinous debts are paid, however, is to marry. Tall, thin, and plain, she has no expectation of success. In London for her first Season she seizes the chance to write the tale of a brooding duke. In her research, she finds Sebastian Fitzhugh, the 5th Duke of Mallen, who unfortunately is perfectly affable, charming, and so nicely… configured… he takes her breath away. He lacks all the character traits she needs for her story, but alas, any duke will have to do.

Sebastian Fitzhugh, the 5th Duke of Mallen has been deceived so many times during the high-stakes game of courtship, he’s lost faith in society women. Yet, after a chance encounter with Hermione, he finds himself intrigued. Not a woman he’d normally consider beautiful, the young lady’s practical bent, her forthright nature and her tendency to turn up in the oddest places has his interests… roused. He’d like to trust her, he’d like to do a whole lot more with her too, but should he?

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I love Christi Caldwell’s books. She always enchants me with stories that are full of warmth, emotion, poignancy, laughter and romance and this, the final book in her Scandalous Seasons series, is no exception.

It is refreshing to have a heroine who is not perfect in every way. Hermione is plain, rail thin with slightly crooked teeth and is generally regarded as a bluestocking. After her mother dies, her father withdraws into himself, neglecting his family, and Hermione willingly takes on the role of both parent and protector to her siblings. I loved the selfless way she puts her siblings’ welfare before her own. Her father’s mismanagement of their finances has left them facing financial ruin and Hermione gallantly tries to keep the family afloat and retain her own independence with her payments from writing Gothic novels. However, she knows that the only solution to their situation is for her to travel to London and find a wealthy husband.

Although I am a huge fan of all those brooding, tormented heroes, I adored Sebastian. He is charming, clever and kind with a sense of humour as well. However, he does take his ducal duties seriously, having had the precepts of responsibility, commitment, and honour instilled into him from an early age by his father. He is fully aware of his duty to provide an heir but, deep down longs for a marriage based on love rather than duty. He longs to find a woman who sees him as a person and not simply a title.

It is obvious that Ms Caldwell has very much drawn on her own personal experiences in writing this book and it gives the story real emotional depth. I could relate to Hermione in so many ways. She has to cope with unforeseen, life-changing events and I’m sure many of us have had similar experiences; I know I have. Above all, this is a story of love, hope and family.

The romance is perfectly paced… a lovely blend of tenderness, passion, heartbreak and humour. Here are a few of my favourite moments:

Something about her commanded his notice, demanded his attention, if for no other reason than to understand the intense glint in her eyes and whatever the hell it was she marked down on that card.

~~~~~

She was Hermione, so very different than any other lady to come before her. Not mercenary or title-grasping, she was the first woman to see him and see… a man. Not the title. Or duke. Or gads of wealth. Simply Sebastian.

~~~~~

“Men don’t woolgather. I don’t woolgather.” Dukes certainly did not woolgather. They were contemplative, quite rational gentlemen who didn’t think overly long about unimpressed lithe young ladies with… Oh, for Christ’s sake. “I’ve business to see to,” he lied.

~~~~~

In a matter of days, a handful of meetings, three stolen kisses, and a Gothic novel, Sebastian had given his heart to a woman he barely knew.

~~~~~

“It is for you, Hermione. I told you I wanted all of you. I want the aggravating parts, the loyal parts; I want your smile and laugh. I want Mr. Michaelmas.”

~~~~~

The secondary characters are so well-drawn. I loved Adeline ( Addie), Hermione’s 11 year old sister, and the interactions between these two were delightful. Her brother Hugh’s attitude annoyed me at times but it was obvious that he was only being protective of Hermione. I loved seeing how strong the family bond was between the siblings. I clapped my hands with glee when the ruthless, scheming Aunt Agatha gets her marching orders. Sebastian’s sister Emmeline and her husband Drake (from Forever Betrothed, Never the Bride) are on hand to provide timely words of advice to our hero and heroine and I also loved the addendum to the Epilogue.

MY VERDICT: An enchanting finale to a truly delightful series. Highly recommended.

REVIEW RATING: 5/5 STARS

SENSUALITY RATING: WARM

Read August 2015

Scandalous Seasons series (click on the covers for more details):
Forever Betrothed, Never the Bride (Scandalous Seasons, #1) by Christi Caldwell Never Courted, Suddenly Wed (Scandalous Seasons, #2) by Christi Caldwell Always Proper, Suddenly Scandalous (Scandalous Seasons, #3) by Christi Caldwell Always a Rogue, Forever Her Love (Scandalous Seasons, #4) by Christi Caldwell A Marquess for Christmas (Scandalous Seasons Book 5) by Christi Caldwell Once a Wallflower, At Last His Love (Scandalous Seasons, # 6) by Christi Caldwell

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(Scandalous Seasons, #5 )

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Lady Patrina Tidemore gave up on the ridiculous notion of true love after having her heart shattered and her trust destroyed by a black-hearted cad. Used as a pawn in a game of revenge against her brother, Patrina returns to London from a failed elopement with a tattered reputation and little hope for a respectable match. The only peace she finds is in her solitude on the cold winter days at Hyde Park. And even that is yanked from her by two little hellions who just happen to have a devastatingly handsome, but coldly aloof father, the Marquess of Beaufort. Something about the lord stirs the dreams she’d once carried for an honorable gentleman’s love.

Weston Aldridge, the 4th Marquess of Beaufort was deceived and betrayed by his late wife. In her faithlessness, he’s come to view women as self-serving, indulgent creatures. Except, after a series of chance encounters with Patrina, he comes to appreciate how uniquely different she is than all women he’s ever known.

At the Christmastide season, a time of hope and new beginnings, Patrina and Weston, unexpectedly learn true love in one another. However, as Patrina’s scandalous past threatens their future and the happiness of his children, they are both left to determine if love is enough.

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This is a charming romance by an author who has become a firm favourite of mine. Christi Caldwell always writes stories that are full of emotion and heart with characters that tug at your heartstrings.

Patrina and Weston share a common bond – both gave their love to undeserving people and both are suffering the consequences.

I felt so much sympathy for Patrina. She eloped with a man she thought loved her, only to discover that she had been duped by a heartless schemer hellbent on revenge against her brother, Jonathan. The consequences perfectly highlight the double standards of the ton – the scheming Marshville comes out of it unscathed while poor Patrina becomes a social outcast resigned to spinsterhood. She is full of regret for her foolish action because she realises that she has jeopardised her sisters’ future marital prospects. She had changed from a smiling, carefree woman into a guarded, fractious one.

Living with a wife who had betrayed him in numerous affairs during their 10 years of marriage has left Weston a bitter, angry and heartless man; one with a “steely guard around his heart”. His love for his children, Daniel and Charlotte is never in doubt but, in his desire to protect them from any further hurt, he let them run wild and they had become “reprehensible misbehavers”. The children’s unruly behaviour leads to a rather unconventional and amusing initial meeting with Patrina!

First appearances can often be deceptive. On first meeting Weston, Patrina sees him as insufferable, overbearing and aloof but gradually her opinions start to change – “The somber gentleman she’d come to expect had a lighthearted glint in his eyes”. Weston has vowed to never trust another woman but Patrina with her warmth, courage and kindness to his children threatens to slip past his defenses.

The love that grows between them is sweet and heart-warming. It was lovely to see how Patrina makes Weston happy for the first time in years and restores his jest for life while Weston and the children teach Patrina how to smile again.

Knowing that her scandalous reputation can only hurt them, I admire Patrina’s willingness to put Weston and his children’s happiness before her own. Thank goodness Weston is a hero who is not willing to give up on the woman he loves and his proposal scene is emotional, amusing and romantic.

I came to adore Weston’s children for championing of Patrina and their delightful habit of hiding behind the drapes to eavesdrop.

The curtains rustled yet again, and Amanda angled her head. “What was that?”
Weston schooled his features. “What was what?” After all, if his sister discovered Charlotte and Daniel’s tendency to eavesdrop, he’d not be spared her scathing diatribe on all the ways in which he was failing as a father.

Although Weston’s sister obviously loves her brother and the children, her attitude rankled with me. She so perfectly reflects the high-handedness of Society in her prejudice towards Patrina.

The unwavering love and loyalty of Patrina’s sisters, Penelope, Prudence and Poppy is very touching. I’m rather fond of Poppy, the youngest who seems to have a wise head on such young shoulders. I also like her directness…there’s no beating around the bush with Poppy!

The delightful Epilogue just rounds off everything in a most satisfying way.

My Verdict: Full of warmth, emotion, sadness, laughter and romance, this enchanting novella can be read any time of the year.

REVIEW RATING: 5/5 STARS

SENSUALITY RATING: SUBTLE

Read July 2015

Scandalous Seasons series (click on the covers for more details):

Forever Betrothed, Never the Bride (Scandalous Seasons, #1) by Christi Caldwell Never Courted, Suddenly Wed (Scandalous Seasons, #2) by Christi Caldwell Always Proper, Suddenly Scandalous (Scandalous Seasons, #3) by Christi Caldwell Always a Rogue, Forever Her Love (Scandalous Seasons, #4) by Christi Caldwell A Marquess for Christmas (Scandalous Seasons Book 5) by Christi Caldwell Once a Wallflower, At Last His Love (Scandalous Seasons, # 6) by Christi Caldwell

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Always a Rogue, Forever Her Love 2

(Scandalous Seasons, #4)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Miss Juliet Marshville is spitting mad. With one guardian missing, and the other singularly uninterested in her fate, she is at the mercy of her wastrel brother who loses her beloved childhood home to a man known as Sin. Determined to reclaim control of Rosecliff Cottage and her own fate, Juliet arranges a meeting with the notorious rogue and demands the return of her property.

Jonathan Tidemore, 5th Earl of Sinclair, known to the ton as Sin, is exceptionally lucky in life and at the gaming tables. He has just one problem. Well…four, really. His incorrigible sisters have driven off yet another governess. This time, however, his mother demands he find an appropriate replacement.

When Miss Juliet Marshville boldly demands the return of her precious cottage, he takes advantage of his sudden good fortune and puts an offer to her; turn his sisters into proper English ladies, and he’ll return Rosecliff Cottage to Juliet’s possession.

Jonathan comes to appreciate Juliet’s spirit, courage, and clever wit, and decides to claim the fiery beauty as his mistress. Juliet, however, will be mistress for no man. Nor could she ever love a man who callously stole her home in a game of cards. As Jonathan begins to see Juliet as more than a spirited beauty to warm his bed, he realizes she could be a lady he could love the rest of his life, if only he can convince the proud Juliet that he’s worthy of her hand and heart.

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I am so glad I discovered Christi Caldwell last year and she is fast becoming one of my favourite authors with her charming, tender love stories. Always a Rogue, Forever Her Love is easily read as a standalone but I can definitely recommend the first three books in this series.

Despite his roguish reputation, it is obvious how much Jonathan loves his mother and four sisters regardless of the trials and tribulations they present. His mother bemoans the fact that he will not “do right by the Sinclair line and wed a proper English miss” but he has no intention of curtailing his life of pleasure by taking a wife. His three youngest sisters are “outrageously ill-behaved and highly improper” and their latest governess (the fifth) has resigned. His mother is at her wit’s end and gives Jonathan the task of finding a new governess.

Juliet Marshville has been lame since she was thirteen when her leg was shattered in a fall. It was then that she discovered just how much her brother, Albert, hated her. He is a selfish wastrel who has denied Juliet a Season with the cruellest of words.

“It would be an utter waste of funds to launch a faulty ship like you off into a sea made of diamonds of the first water.”

Juliet is furious when she discovers that Albert has gambled away her beloved Rosecliff Cottage to the Earl of Sinclair. Not only that but he is pushing her to marry the loathsome Lord Williams…only he has something far less respectable in mind. She approaches the Earl of Sinclair determined to demand her cottage back. The earl agrees on condition she take up the position of governess to his sisters and shape them into “models of proper, English gentility.” As the cottage represents freedom from both her brother and the unwelcome advances of Lord Williams and a place to call her own, she accepts.

Despite everything that life has thrown at her, I loved Juliet’s indomitable spirit and loathed her cruel, heartless brother with a vengeance. It’s a shock to discover the true level of his hatred for his sister.

I enjoyed the battle of wills between Juliet and Jonathan’s sisters, Poppy, Penelope and Prudence. The three hoydens think to terrorize Juliet in the same way they did the other governesses, only to find she is made of sterner stuff.

Fortunately, she’d learned how to handle her wicked brother and his childish outbursts through the years. In fact, she’d wager her three charges combined could not even come close to Albert’s nastiness.

I enjoyed watching Juliet win over Poppy and Penelope with her kindness and patience.

From the moment they meet, I could feel the strong attraction between Jonathan and Juliet and, whenever they are together, sexual tension simmers just beneath the surface.

He lowered his brow to hers, his sapphire blue stare pierced her with its intensity. “Jonathan,” he demanded with all the authority of one accustomed to having his every desire met. “Say my name.”
“Jonathan,” she whispered, loving the feel of his name upon her lips, so utterly masculine and yet all the same, smooth as warmed chocolate.
He cupped her cheek. “Now tell me you still do not desire my kiss, Juliet?”

Jonathan’s admiration for Juliet’s courage in the face of adversity humbles him in a way that makes him take a good look at his own life. He sees a “smug, self-serving bastard” who could never be worthy of a woman of honour and integrity like Juliet. He doesn’t see his own worth as Juliet does; a loyal and loving brother, a dedicated son, a fair employer and a man who made her feel protected and cherished.

Of course the path of true love never runs smoothly and they have to overcome some stumbling blocks to attain their HEA, not least Jonathan’s misplaced honour. It takes some sage words from his little sister, Poppy, to make him see sense.

Poppy sighed and flung herself into a nearby leather-winged back chair. “I don’t like Jonathan. I preferred Sin. Why, Sin who would simply go and take back his Miss Marshville because he loved her and couldn’t live without her and didn’t care…”

Everyone who reads my reviews knows how much I love Epilogues and Ms Caldwell’s Epilogue is the delicious topping on an already scrumptious cake. I leave you with one final quote and its significance will become clear when you read the book.


“Under the stars, she whispered.”

MY VERDICT: Another captivating addition to this delightful series. Definitely recommended.

REVIEW RATING: 5/5 Stars

SENSUALITY RATING: WARM

Read May 2015

Scandalous Seasons series (click on the covers for more details):

Forever Betrothed, Never the Bride (Scandalous Seasons, #1) by Christi Caldwell Never Courted, Suddenly Wed (Scandalous Seasons, #2) by Christi Caldwell Always Proper, Suddenly Scandalous (Scandalous Seasons, #3) by Christi Caldwell Always a Rogue, Forever Her Love (Scandalous Seasons, #4) by Christi Caldwell A Marquess for Christmas (Scandalous Seasons Book 5) by Christi Caldwell Once a Wallflower, At Last His Love (Scandalous Seasons, # 6) by Christi Caldwell

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Always Proper, Suddenly Scandalous

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Geoffrey Winters, Viscount Redbrooke was not always the hard, unrelenting lord driven by propriety. After a tragic mistake, he resolved to honor his responsibility to the Redbrooke line and live a life, free of scandal. Knowing his duty is to wed a proper, respectable English miss, he selects Lady Beatrice Dennington, daughter of the Duke of Somerset, the perfect woman for him. Until he meets Miss Abigail Stone…

To distance herself from a personal scandal, Abigail Stone flees America to visit her uncle, the Duke of Somerset. She finds herself helplessly intrigued by the hard, too-proper Geoffrey. With his strict appreciation for decorum and order, he is nothing like the man she’s always dreamed of.

Abigail is everything Geoffrey does not need. She upends his carefully ordered world at every encounter. As they begin to care for one another, Abigail carefully guards the secret that resulted in her journey to England.

Only, if Geoffrey learns the truth about Abigail, he must decide which he holds most dear–his place in Society or Abigail’s place in his heart.

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I have fallen in love with this series and, in this third book, Christi Caldwell weaves an emotional, passionate and romantic opposites attract story.

Geoffrey was introduced in NEVER COURTED, SUDDENLY WED as the heroine Sophie’s aloof and rigidly proper older brother. Duty and responsibility are his bywords but he hadn’t always been this stickler for propriety. Five years ago, Geoffrey had fallen in love and chosen to put his own desires before everything else… a decision that was to have tragic consequences. It is easy to understand the guilt he has subsequently carried and his overwhelming need to somehow atone for what happened by putting duty and honour above all else. He knows he has an obligation to marry and produce a heir and he believes he has found the perfect candidate in Lady Beatrice Pennington… a demure, polite and respectable young lady. I love the ways in which Ms Caldwell reveals Geoffrey’s desire for an orderly life, like the list he compiles detailing the essential components for wooing a respectable young lady…

Ices at Gunter’s.
A walk in Hyde Park.
Several waltzes
A trip to the theatre.

or calling his dog “Decorum”..

Abigail has come to England to stay with her uncle in the hope of leaving her scandalous past behind in America. This one mistake has resulted in her having to leave her family, home and everything she loves, knowing that nothing in her life could ever be the same again.

Her heart twisted. It would never be the same. She could not regain what had been lost; her virtue, her pride, her good name.

It is easy to feel her pain ad regret and understand her feelings of guilt for letting her family down. Her fear that she may never be able to return home is all too real.

Although there is an instant attraction between Abigail and Geoffrey, the actual romance builds slowly. I love the scene where Geoffrey rescues Abigail from the clutches of the lecherous Lord Carmichael. With nothing more than simple touch, Ms Caldwell conveys a wonderful sense of intimacy between them.

As if a man possessed, Geoffrey’s hand came up of its own volition to stroke the silken curve of her cheek.

♥♥♥

“Thank you.” Abigail leaned up and placed her lips along his cheek. “I…just, thank you.” The husky timbre of her voice washed of him.

Abigail turns Geoffrey’s orderly world upside down. Unconventional, bold and outspoken, she is totally unsuitable but he can’t resist her. Propriety seems to fly out of the window! I love his jealous reaction when his friend, Lord Sinclair, shows an interest in Abigail – he wanted to snarl and toss the table aside and bloody Sinclair.

Geoffrey’s rejection of Abigail, after he learns of the true reason she left America, is so heart-breaking. I felt for both of them and it was hard to imagine how such a rift could be healed. It takes some straight talking from Lord Sinclair to make Geoffrey realise just how much Abigail means to him. Cue happy ending….not quite because there is one more twist in the story that I certainly didn’t see coming.

I love the significance of the tale of Dionysus and Ariadne and when Geoffrey gives Abigail a certain gift towards the end of the book, it is wonderfully romantic. In the Epilogue, Geoffrey is finally able to shed the guilt he has carried all those years.
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I like the charming, roguish Lord Sinclair and Abigail’s cousins, Beatrice and Robert, who treat her with such kindness and concern. Of course, it is always a pleasure to see characters from the previous books.

Overall, an enchanting story that is both heart-warming and heart-rending.

REVIEW RATING : 5/5 STARS

SENSUALITY RATING: WARM

Read March 2015

Scandalous Seasons series (click on the covers for more details):
Forever Betrothed, Never the Bride (Scandalous Seasons, #1) by Christi Caldwell Never Courted, Suddenly Wed (Scandalous Seasons, #2) by Christi Caldwell Always Proper, Suddenly Scandalous (Scandalous Seasons, #3) by Christi Caldwell Always a Rogue, Forever Her Love (Scandalous Seasons, #4) by Christi Caldwell A Marquess for Christmas (Scandalous Seasons Book 5) by Christi Caldwell Once a Wallflower, At Last His Love (Scandalous Seasons, # 6) by Christi Caldwell

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Never Courted, Suddenly Wed 2

(Scandalous Seasons, #2)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Christopher Ansley, Earl of Waxham, has constructed a perfect image for the ton—the ladies love him and his company is desired by all. Only two people know the truth about Waxham’s secret. Unfortunately, one of them is Miss Sophie Winters.

Sophie Winters has known Christopher since she was in leading strings. As children, they delighted in tormenting each other. Now at one and twenty, she still has a tendency to find herself in scrapes, and her marital prospects are slim.

When his father threatens to expose his shame to the ton, unless he weds Sophie for her dowry, Christopher concocts a plan to remain a bachelor. What he didn’t plan on, was falling in love with the lively, impetuous Sophie. As secrets are exposed, will Christopher’s love be enough when she discovers his role in his father’s scheme?

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This is the second book in Christi Caldwell’s “Scandalous Seasons” and, once again, she enchanted me with her delightful characters and captivating love story.

God, how he loathed the written word. The constant reminder of his failings; a secret shame he carried.

My heart ached for the young Christopher, struggling academically because he had difficulty reading (what we would now recognise as dyslexia) and trying desperately to win his father’s approval, only to be treated with scorn and physical abuse. Over the years he has acquired some of the finest horses and his wit and charm have made him the darling of the ton and popular with the ladies. However, ever present is the knowledge that one day Society will discover his shameful secret.

Christopher’s father, the Marquess of Milford, is a thoroughly detestable man. Not only does he constantly remind Christopher of his shortcomings but, facing financial ruin because of poor investments and his gambling habits, he is intent on forcing Christopher into marrying Sophie for her fortune. He threatens to expose his son to Society as a “penniless simpleton” and even have him committed to Bedlam if Christopher refuses to agree his demands. Christopher hates the idea of being a fortune hunter and is determined to come up with a scheme to thwart his father’s plans. He has no wish to marry the hoyden who made his early years a misery and who, in Christopher’s eyes, has come to ‘represent an extension of his father’s cruelty
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Society had their diamonds of the first water. In Sophie’s case, she’d never been considered a paste gem on the muddy Thames.

I love Sophie because I can so easily relate to this unconventional heroine. She is short, plump and, at the age of 22, fast approaching spinsterhood but also bold and spirited. She is regarded as a social oddity and her unfortunate tendency towards clumsiness makes her fodder for Lady Ackerly’s Tattle Sheet. Her mother and brother are pushing her to find a husband and, although she longs for a loving husband and a family of her own, she is practical enough to realise that she is unlikely to make a match of her own choosing.

When her brother, Geoffrey, proposes Christopher as a good match, Sophie refuses point blank to marry him. At the time Sophie made her come-out, she had hoped that their childhood animosity was a thing of the past and she could rely on Christopher’s friendship and support to ease her way into society. But he had pointedly ignored her and his flawless image among the ton only served to highlight her own imperfections.

I love the scene in the library when the masked Sophie and Christopher are unaware of each other’s identity. They are just two strangers meeting for the first time and sharing an instant attraction. I enjoyed the irony of the situation and the fact that a certain item in this scene becomes important towards the end of the book in bringing about Sophie and Christopher’s Happy Ever After.

They are such an endearing couple and their romance is heart-warming, funny, emotional and romantic. As always I’m sharing some of my favourite moments which I hope will provide a taster for this delightful romance.

He wiped away a lone tear from her cheek, and then froze. It was as though a bolt of lightning had jolted him right there amidst Hyde Park’s lush greenery. Emerald green and turquoise flecks dotted her irises, a shade of blue to rival the purest ocean waters. They were the kind of eyes a man could lose himself in.

~~~

All along she’d thought him no better than the fanged monsters of the Red Parlor. In actuality, he’d been a kind of Lancelot, intending to slay her demons.

~~~

Only Christopher had come to appreciate her wit , intelligence, and …the candlelight bathed her face in a soft glow— the depth of her beauty.

~~~

There had also been a niggling of something deep and dark that he didn’t recognize . Something green and ugly that had festered inside him the moment Sophie’s bow-shaped lips had tipped up in a smile for Mallen. An emotion that felt like… jealousy.

~~~

“He loves you.” He glanced back out the window.
“How do you know?” The question tumbled from her lips , exposing the hope and dream in her heart.
A slight smile pulled at his lips. “How do I know?”
She nodded . “Yes,” she said, remembering he couldn’t see her.
“Because it looks as though he’s been dragged through hell without his valet.”
Her brow wrinkled. “What?”
Mallen nodded toward the window. “Your husband has arrived, my lady.”
~~~

The secondary characters add an extra layer to the story. Ms Caldwell succeeds in making Christopher’s father a truly hateful character which makes me all the more sympathetic to Christopher’s dilemma. I wanted to cheer from the rooftops when Sophie confronts him:

“It pains me to know the abuse Christopher endured at your hands. Hopefully, at some point, in these late years of your life, you reconcile the harm you did to your son… and search for peace, because if not, I’m certain there is a dark place in hell reserved for the soulless cowards like yourself .”

Although he really cares for Sophie, her brother Geoffrey is the epitome of everything that is rigid and proper and it will be interesting to see him paired with the highly unconventional and bold American, Abigail in “Always Proper, Suddenly Scandalous”.

Emmeline and Drake (Forever Betrothed, Never the Bride) make a welcome appearance offering support to Sophie when she is in desperate need of a friend.

I must mention Sophie’s partner in crime, her dog, Duke, and this exchange between Sophie and the Duke of Mallen was particularly amusing.

“You named your dog Duke?”
She nodded, hugging the dog close. “He is a commanding, arrogant little thing and so it seemed perfectly appropriate…” Sophie swallowed the remainder of her words as she realized the insult she’d dealt the powerful peer.

The final column Christopher puts in Lady Ackerly’s Tattle Sheet for Sophie is just so heart-warmingly romantic and the Epilogue left me with a lovely warm glow.

Overall, another enchanting addition to this delightful series. Definitely recommended.

REVIEW RATING: 5/5 STARS

SENSUALITY RATING: WARM

Read February 2015

Scandalous Seasons series (Click on book covers for more details):

Forever Betrothed, Never the Bride (Scandalous Seasons, #1) by Christi Caldwell Never Courted, Suddenly Wed (Scandalous Seasons, #2) by Christi Caldwell Always Proper, Suddenly Scandalous (Scandalous Seasons, #3) by Christi Caldwell Always a Rogue, Forever Her Love (Scandalous Seasons, #4) by Christi Caldwell A Marquess for Christmas (Scandalous Seasons Book 5) by Christi Caldwell Once a Wallflower, At Last His Love (Scandalous Seasons Book 6) by Christi Caldwell

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Source: Purchased from Amazon Kindle

This is part two of Eva Devon’s sexy, slightly angsty and very delicious contemporary serial

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Cover Blurb:

Part Two:
A job offer from the sexiest man Julie Doyle has ever met has totally changed her world and opened her eyes to desire. But can she stay professional with the sexy Irish billionaire or will she lose it all and give into the way his amber eyes seem to make her body burn with hunger.

Damian Fitzgerald wants Julie Doyle in his bed. It’s that simple. A job offer, a huge advance, and anything else she might desire are prices he’s willing to pay but something about the vulnerable young woman speaks to something he long thought dead, his heart. But Damian prides himself on self control and he knows that out of all the things she might ask for, his heart is the one thing she will never have.

♥♥♥♥♥♥

Source: Purchased from Amazon Kindle

I am buying some of Loretta Chase’s earlier books now that they are available on Kindle in the UK.

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

“I need no further proof that you are despicable!” Lilith Davenant’s sensibilities were appropriately offended. How dare the brazen Lord Julian Brandon kiss her when he knew full well the man she was to marry was in the next room! It mattered not that the cad was handsome, charming and witty…unlike the staid, auburn-haired young widow’s fiance. Lilith’s repute meant all. Never did she imagine the blackguard’s amorous pursuit was the result of a wager to sully her flawless reputation. Nor did she dream that one day she would yearn for Julian’s irresistible embrace-and that a reckless gamble would cause the notorious rake to lose his heart…just as Lilith discovered her own!

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Source: Purchased from Amazon Kindle

I have been reading and enjoying Maggi Andersen’s The Spies of Mayfair series and this is the first book in her new The Baxendale Sisters series.

(The Baxendale Sisters, #1)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Freedom. That’s all Lady Honor Baxendale wants—for her sisters and for herself. Honor has a bold plan to become financially independent, using a skill she learned at her father’s knee. She seeks the help of a solicitor and is pleased with her choice…as long as she can resist the solicitor himself.

Lord Edward Winborne has been happy to come to the aid of his four sisters in the past. But when a neighbor’s daughter, Lady Honor Baxendale, requests his help for a dangerous scheme she has in mind, he feels it his duty to dissuade her. When that fails, he wants to protect her, and then somehow finds he wants to do more. Much more.

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Source: Purchased from Amazon Kindle

This is the latest book in Christi Caldwell’s Scandalous Seasons series.

(Scandalous Seasons, #6)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Responsible, practical Miss Hermione Rogers, has been crafting stories as the notorious Mr. Michael Michaelmas and selling them for a meager wage to support her siblings. The only real way to ensure her family’s ruinous debts are paid, however, is to marry. Tall, thin, and plain, she has no expectation of success. In London for her first Season she seizes the chance to write the tale of a brooding duke. In her research, she finds Sebastian Fitzhugh, the 5th Duke of Mallen, who unfortunately is perfectly affable, charming, and so nicely… configured… he takes her breath away. He lacks all the character traits she needs for her story, but alas, any duke will have to do.

Sebastian Fitzhugh, the 5th Duke of Mallen has been deceived so many times during the high-stakes game of courtship, he’s lost faith in society women. Yet, after a chance encounter with Hermione, he finds himself intrigued. Not a woman he’d normally consider beautiful, the young lady’s practical bent, her forthright nature and her tendency to turn up in the oddest places has his interests… roused. He’d like to trust her, he’d like to do a whole lot more with her too, but should he?

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Maggie Craig is a new-to-me author but I downloaded this book because it came highly recommended by my friend, Wendy Loveridge., who shares the same taste in books as myself.

Source: Purchased from Amazon Kindle

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

A romantic tale of young love and old Edinburgh from the pen of a consummate storyteller and acclaimed Scottish historian.

It’s 1822 and Scotland’s capital is a city of both splendour and squalor. Kate Dunbar is worked like a slave all day and preyed upon at night in the gloomy vaults that lurk under the Old Town’s South Bridge but never gives up hope of a better life for herself and her beloved young brother Andrew.

When wealthy young medical student Richard Hope walks into her life, Kate knows that his interest in her could lead them both into danger. Yet it’s not long before the two of them have fallen head-over-heels in love.

Others are watching the young lovers. Radical booksellers Peggy and Nathaniel Henderson have Kate and Andrew’s best interests at heart. Their greedy and grasping uncle doesn’t, and he soon soon starts laying his own evil plans.

Kate and Richard’s passionate and poignant romance intertwines with the richly-imagined colour and pageantry of King George IV’s historic visit to Edinburgh in 1822, and culminates in the heart-stopping drama of the Great Fire of Edinburgh of 1824.

Can their love affair have a happy ending or will fate, the evil that threatens them and the rigid rules of class and society allow them only one sweet moment of happiness?

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Last year I read and loved FOREVER BETROTHED, NEVER THE BRIDE, the first book in Christi Caldwell’s Scandalous Seasons series. I already have book 2, NEVER COURTED, SUDDENLY WED and so I’ve bought the remaining books in the series.

Source: All purchased from Amazon Kindle

(Scandalous Seasons, #3)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Geoffrey Winters, Viscount Redbrooke was not always the hard, unrelenting lord driven by propriety. After a tragic mistake, he resolved to honor his responsibility to the Redbrooke line and live a life, free of scandal. Knowing his duty is to wed a proper, respectable English miss, he selects Lady Beatrice Dennington, daughter of the Duke of Somerset, the perfect woman for him. Until he meets Miss Abigail Stone…

To distance herself from a personal scandal, Abigail Stone flees America to visit her uncle, the Duke of Somerset. She finds herself helplessly intrigued by the hard, too-proper Geoffrey. With his strict appreciation for decorum and order, he is nothing like the man she’s always dreamed of.

Abigail is everything Geoffrey does not need. She upends his carefully ordered world at every encounter. As they begin to care for one another, Abigail carefully guards the secret that resulted in her journey to England.

Only, if Geoffrey learns the truth about Abigail, he must decide which he holds most dear–his place in Society or Abigail’s place in his heart.

(Scandalous Seasons, #4)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Miss Juliet Marshville is spitting mad. With one guardian missing, and the other singularly uninterested in her fate, she is at the mercy of her wastrel brother who loses her beloved childhood home to a man known as Sin. Determined to reclaim control of Rosecliff Cottage and her own fate, Juliet arranges a meeting with the notorious rogue and demands the return of her property.

Jonathan Tidemore, 5th Earl of Sinclair, known to the ton as Sin, is exceptionally lucky in life and at the gaming tables. He has just one problem. Well…four, really. His incorrigible sisters have driven off yet another governess. This time, however, his mother demands he find an appropriate replacement.

When Miss Juliet Marshville boldly demands the return of her precious cottage, he takes advantage of his sudden good fortune and puts an offer to her; turn his sisters into proper English ladies, and he’ll return Rosecliff Cottage to Juliet’s possession.

Jonathan comes to appreciate Juliet’s spirit, courage, and clever wit, and decides to claim the fiery beauty as his mistress. Juliet, however, will be mistress for no man. Nor could she ever love a man who callously stole her home in a game of cards. As Jonathan begins to see Juliet as more than a spirited beauty to warm his bed, he realizes she could be a lady he could love the rest of his life, if only he can convince the proud Juliet that he’s worthy of her hand and heart.

 

I also bought this prequel novella to her latest series, The Heart of a Duke.

(Heart of a Duke, #1)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Author’s Note: This is a prequel novella to “The Heart of a Duke” series by Christi Caldwell. It was originally available in “The Heart of a Duke” Collection and is now being published as an individual novella. ***It features a new prologue and epilogue.

Years earlier, a gypsy woman passed to Lady Aldora Adamson and her friends a heart pendant that promised them each the heart of a duke.

Now, a young lady, with her family facing ruin and scandal, Lady Aldora doesn’t have time for mythical stories about cheap baubles. She needs to save her sisters and brother by marrying a titled gentleman with wealth and power to his name. She sets her bespectacled sights upon the Marquess of St. James.

Turned out by his father after a tragic scandal, Lord Michael Knightly has grown into a powerful, but self-made man. With the whispers and stares that still follow him, he would rather be anywhere but London…

Until he meets Lady Aldora, a young woman who mistakes him for his brother, the Marquess of St. James. The connection between Aldora and Michael is immediate and as they come to know one another, Aldora’s feelings for Michael war with her sisterly responsibilities. With her family’s dire situation, a man of Michael’s scandalous past wlll never do.

Ultimately, Aldora must choose between her responsibilities as a sister and her love for Michael.

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