on 20 August 2012
The Duke of Cheviot has amassed so many debts that he can't see a way out and takes his own life, leaving his heir, an army Captain, to put everything to rights. He can only do this by marrying money, and his aunt and uncle seek out an heiress for him - Sarah Patterson. The downside to this is that she's not an aristocrat - her grandfather has made his money in trade - but beggars can't be choosers and time is of the essence.
Anthony and Sarah marry, and things begin well. They have already developed a friendship, which is a good basis for a marriage, and they have an instinctual understanding of each other. There are a few bumps along the road however, although these are ironed out fairly quickly because this pair actually talk to each other rather than hiding things or jumping to conclusions. It's clear they've fallen for each other before they acknowledge it, but of course things can't be as easy as all that.
The unusual thing about this book was that rather than there being a jealous mistress with murderous intent, it's Anthony's secretary and (he thinks) best friend Max who is the cause of the plot against Sarah. Right from the outset, it's clear that Max is infatuated with his employer (although there's nothing overtly sexual), and he had expected, given the nature of Anthony's marriage, to retain his position as BFF and confidante. He doesn't want to kill Sarah to get her out of the way, but rather so that Anthony will turn to him and their relationship will return to the way it was before.
I raced through the book in about a day and really enjoyed it. The relationship between the H&H is tender and very well drawn; there are a few sex scenes, but nothing graphic.