‘The Bluestocking and the Rake’ by Norma Darcy

tbsatr ndSTORY: The Earl of Marcham has decided to put the excesses of his colorful youth firmly behind him so that he may find a wife and beget himself an heir. But a straitlaced spinster may stand in his way after she releases a morality pamphlet exposing some of his most private misdemeanors. Determined to have his revenge and teach her a much-needed lesson, the earl decides that his best course of action is to seduce her…

Miss Georgiana Blakelow has long given up the hope of marriage. Instead, she’s resigned to serving as governess to her siblings and saving the family estate from ruin. She might succeed, if only the wretch of an earl who won the estate at the gaming table would be reasonable.

As the sparks fly, and as Lord Marcham finds himself unexpectedly attracted to Miss Blakelow, she becomes even more determined to keep him at a safe distance. The closer he gets, the more likely he is to discover that his bluestocking isn’t all that she seems.

Revised edition: This edition of The Bluestocking and the Rake includes editorial revisions.

REVIEW: Longfield Park, Hertfordshire – September 1817

Robert Holkham, the fourth Earl of Marcham, age 36, enjoys his life just as it is.  He is an intelligent man with a vast interest in science.  However, his widowed mother is anxious to see him marry and provide an heir.  Resigned to his fate, he begins his search for a wife.
In the meantime, Robert learns that a Miss Blakelow has written a tell-all pamphlet revealing a secret duel he was involved in as a youth and he is furious.  Georgiana Blakelow decides to call upon Robert asking him to rethink a gambling debt that her brother and head of the family, owes him.  Apparently, her brother lost their family home, Thorncote, by gambling.  She has even make careful calculations about how she will pay him back over time.  When Robert learns that she is the same woman who wrote the pamphlet, he refuses.
Life is very hard for Georgiana.  Her mother remarried after her father died, and her mother also died when Georgiana was young leaving her to raise her younger stepbrothers and stepsisters.  This is her priority and she is happy to care for them, yet her future appears to be simply a spinster.  We learn from the beginning of the novel that Georgiana had an unfortunate incident some years ago that has left her withdrawn from society.  However, it is not until later in the novel that we learn what happened which explains all of the other twists to the plot.  So, do be patient.
This is an intricately woven novel with a mystery, romance and lots of humor.  I enjoyed reading and laughing at this book.  I’m thinking lots of others will love it too.
Connie for b2b
Complimentary copy provided by the publisher
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