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Veena’s review of A Little Mischief by Amelia Grey
Regency Romance re-published by Sourcebooks 01 Aug 12

Daniel Colbrooke has barely been back in town when he hears about Isabella Winslow and her Wallflowers club that his sister Gretchen is a part of. He’s hardly surprised when their very first meeting involves a wild tale about a rake, his sister, and a disappearing dead body in her garden. He forbids his sister from continuing her association with the troublesome lady and proceeds to put in motion his plan to find a husband for Gretchen and a wife to father a son for himself. Imagine his surprise when he finds a delectable Isabella, a distraught Gretchen, and the re-appearance of the dead rake in the garden of the party that they are all attending that evening.

Isabella is now into her third season. She was extremely shy when she first arrived from the country and spent her first season as a wallflower. Determined to help other shy ladies like herself, she’s started a reading society dubbed the Wallflowers Club where they can discuss books and learn how to converse and generally get over their shyness. Her role model is her aunt and guardian and she has determined that she wants to be a spinster like her aunt and live life on her own terms, until she comes face to face with the Earl of Colebrooke, who challenges all her plans. He makes her forget all her sophistication and yearn for things that she’s never experienced before. Of course, all the excitement associated with solving the puzzle of the disappearing and reappearing body and murder of Boswell is an added plus to the kisses and such.

Daniel is an interesting character. As a most eligible bachelor, he’s sought after by the ton and is determined to make a respectable marriage to a submissive blue blood. Yet he finds Isabella utterly desirable and doesn’t resist her charms, even though he’s determined she’s not wife material. I find it almost offensive that he wants to have his cake and eat it too and damn the consequences. After all, he’s been a man about town, fairly sophisticated, and now an earl, and no matter that Isabella is open to the exploration of her sensuality, she’s a sheltered innocent miss and he should know better. To top it all, he takes a holier-than-thou attitude to his sister and really lays down the law to her with regard to how she should behave and whom she should associate with. A bit of a double standard there.

This is a light, fun read without a whole lot of substance. I find the character of Isabella delightful and also find it interesting how she put the clues together to solve the murder. This book was first published by Berkley in October 2003 and this version has been republished by Sourcebooks.

Grade: B


How can a lady avoid a scandal…

Just as Miss Isabella Winslowe is finally achieving comfortable respectability, the fascinating and decidedly unrespectable Earl of Colebrooke inconveniently appears…

When a gentleman is so determined to flirt…

The darkly handsome Daniel Colebrooke is intrigued and alarmed when an alluring young lady arrives at his door in need of assistance. In a moment of impetuosity, Daniel decides he must keep a close watch on Isabella, and what better way than to strike up a not–so–innocent fliration…

Together they’ll cook up more than a little mischief when a disappearing dead body and a lascivious scandal spins their reckless game entirely out of control.

Read an excerpt.