There's a lot of action, plot and characters in Tamara LeJune's latest novel, Heiress in his Bed. A reader definitely will not be able to skim through this book because there's just too much happening to too many characters, especially toward the end of the novel.
It is almost impossible to give a synopsis of this book but here's a go at it. Lady Viola is the sister of a Duke. Viola is smart, sassy, a bit imperious and sly as a fox. Her brother is kind of a bumbling not too smart guy. Viola wants out of a betrothal to a man she has never met and her brother wants the marriage contracts to be in his family's favor so Julian Devize, stockbroker and financial whiz extraordinaire is brought in to oversee the contracts. Julian is also smart, and he's noble too.
To assist a young woman from the village, Viola goes to London impersonating the shy girl and ends up in a brothel soon to be sold off to the highest bidder. Viola is a country bumpkin, even though she is very fashion forward, but she is not wise to the ways of the world although she thinks she is at first. Julian rescues her but does not know her real identity, Viola, however, knows his.
The time the leads spend together is endearingly sweet and charming as Julian is very honorable and Viola gets to play a new role in her life: that of a beloved girlfriend. Viola can be demanding, after all she is an aristocrat posing as a Vicar's daughter, but she is not so demanding that she is unlikable.
There are so many other characters in this novel woven into the lead's story that it is a little confusing. This novel takes place in London and in Sussex with both Viola's and Julian's relatives playing major and minor parts. This was one aspect of the novel that I did not like as it overtook the lead's story at times. Also these secondary characters needed a little more background, I barely knew some of them, yet they had parts to play in the main story with Viola and Julian. As can be expected, with all these characters, there is mayhem and it never dawns on all the characters until the end of the novel that most of their assumptions about spouses, lovers, friends, relatives and even governesses are wrong.
Viola and Julian were not typical romance heroes and heroines. Julian worked a job, and he actually went to work. He would be at the exchange just like any other stockjobber of his day. Viola was impetuous but also optimistic and thoughtful when it came to others. This novel incorporated the everyday life of Londoners from pawn shops to dessert shops. And even though there were many subplots, I liked this novel; the main story was fresh and humorous.