When I first met the Bocastles I was enchanted, but over time I lost touch with them until this one snuck up on me. Emily Selwick is a delightful regency miss. She’s the bane of the small village where she lives, but it’s all about to change because she wants to marry her childhood sweetheart and settle down into respectability. Her plan, however , has one fatal flaw – the sweetheart doesn’t know she exists. Aided and abetted by her best friend, she executes yet another madcap plan to put herself out there and force him to recognize her place in his life. Unfortunately, she has a head-on collision with a determined Damien Bocastle that causes her to be swept up in his plans and way off her own course.
When Damien wanders into the tent of a fortune teller at a country party, he has no suspicions that his life is about to change completely. Before long he’s on the run from a group of men planning sedition against the crown and trying to protect the gypsy who turns out to be a gentlewoman in disguise and the sister of one of the men that he fought with, to boot. There’s no help for it, but he’s honor bound to marry her and keep her safe while trying to do his duty.
What starts out as a marriage of inconvenience takes an unexpected turn, since neither party is able to resist the other, and pretty soon Emily is learning all about passion. Damien has been a wanderer seeking adventures in different parts of the world. Love and marriage have never been in the cards for him – or perhaps they were as soon as he wandered into a certain gypsy fortune teller’s tent.
I feel that the book starts off with a bang and lots of excitement, and then it slows down with the courtship and marriage, and then seems to take off with enough excitement both in the bedroom and outside to keep the reader involved. The ending is definitely a surprise. I am happy to have had a quick visit again with this large family that has spanned many books.
All Emily Selwick wanted was to convince the man she had adored for years that she was the woman he ought to marry. She never expected that her ill-fated deception at a party would uncover a scheme against the Crown and ensnare her in the sensual trap of an enigmatic stranger.
Damien Boscastle, the Earl of Shalcross, knows he must marry Emily to defend her honor and keep his mission secret. But, by saving her reputation, he will draw her into his arms as well as a dangerous intrigue.
After a whirlwind courtship that leaves her breathless, Emily finds herself wed to a husband who vows not only to protect her from his menacing world—but to train his wife in the pleasures of passion.
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