Forsaken, abandoned, and duped, Miss Jemma Adair has no other recourse but to request her grandfather’s help to avoid living on the streets. His asking price? She must marry a neighboring lord’s odious son. Thankfully, there is a way out of her dilemma—ensuring the rake never asks for her hand. But what is Jemma to do when her ally is an all-too handsome silver-tongued lord with a penchant for poetry that makes her question giving her heart to another man?
Philip De Vere, Lord Harthorne, wishes to marry for love, but inherited debt and family obligations force him to seek a wealthy wife. Yet experience has taught him that ladies of the ton prefer rogues to gentlemen with a poet’s soul. But when an unrepentant hoyden claims to know a thing or two about how to make a man a rake, Philip finds he cannot resist Jemma’s offer or her.
REVIEW: Miss Jemma Adair and her twin sister, Anne, are 18-years-old and help their mother run the family bakery in New York. The girls’ father left their mother years ago. When their mother learns she has 60 days to fully pay for the loan on the bakery or they would have to vacate, the shock kills the already ill woman.
The Duke of Rowan arrives from England and introduces himself to the girls as their mother’s father. He announces that he is taking them back to his estate in England where they will be tutored for six months and learn to be proper young ladies. Then, they will be introduced to the ton where husbands will be found for them. Jemma and Anne have always heard that their grandfather is a cold man who turned his back on his daughter when she ran off and married a man only wanting her dowry. It turns out that her grandfather never gave her the dowry after she defied him.
In England, the girls comply as directed by their grandfather, yet Jemma is a stubborn young woman who professes that she does not want to marry, but instead to run her own bakery. Anne, on the other hand, is more amenable to marry. Although she is a very beautiful young woman, she is self-conscious due to a somewhat crippled leg she was born with.
Philip DeVere, Earl of Harthorne, is facing financial difficulties from failed crops and the like and needs to marry a woman with a large dowry. He has the care of his mother as well and doesn’t want to worry her about their finances. Philip is a good man and detests the thought of having to marry for money. He would rather get a job but knows that it would upset his mother and he would also be looked down upon socially.
When Jemma and Philip meet at a soiree, he is immediately smitten with her red hair and equally fiery personality. Philip is a man who loves to write poetry and feels that if he were more of a rake, he would attract some rich women. So, Jemma agrees to help him become a rake. The gentleman in him finds him rescuing her from the advances of rakes so the tables turn somewhat.
We watch the relationship of Jemma and Philip grow from friendship into love but not without a lots of bumps in the road along the way.
Once again, Ms. Johnstone has penned a delightful story of a hoyden and her loving gentleman that is certain to make readers sigh.
Connie for b2b
Complimentary copy provided by the author