Book Review

‘Not Always a Saint’ by Mary Jo Putney

naas mjpSTORY: After the death of his sweetheart when he was at university, Daniel Herbert buried his grief in medical studies and his passion for healing. Viewed as a saint by those who know him, in his own mind, he never quite manages to live up to his own high standards.

Most men would be thrilled to learn they’ve inherited a title and estate from a distant relative, but Daniel is appalled because the burden of wealth will interfere with his medical calling. Warily he accepts that he must enter society and seek a wife—a sensible woman who can oversee his properties, leaving him free to continue his work. He does not expect to become intoxicated by a woman called the Black Widow, who is as mysterious as she is shockingly beautiful…

Jessie Kelham’s looks have always been a curse. Now alone with a young daughter and a perilous secret, she is in need of protection. But dangerously attractive Daniel Herbert is not the kind of husband she has in mind. If he recognizes her, the demons of her past will surely erupt. Yet they cannot keep apart—and soon they are drawn into a union that may bring joy—or shattering danger…

REVIEW: Jessie Kelham is a lovely woman and a recent widow with a young daughter named Beth.  Her husband was much older than she was but he was kind and they have a good, although short, marriage.  Lord Kelham’s will stated that Beth would be named Baroness Kelham allowing that as a female she could inherit the title.  This infuriated Frederick, Lord Kelman’s greedy nephew and he vowed to get it changed.  Knowing this, Jessie needs to remarry as soon as possible so that Frederick cannot claim Beth as his ward and, thus, have access to her money.

Jessie had been raised by a very hateful father who was a cleric.  She had been told that her mother had passed away when she was very little.  She finally ran away to escape her father’s abuse and married another man who led to disaster.  That is when she met Lord Kelham who was very kind to her.

When out in society and dressed in mourning, Jessie meets Daniel Herbert, the newly named Lord Romayne.  While surprised at his title and inheritance, Daniel is at heart a physician and also a cleric. Healing people is his true calling.  Daniel is immediately drawn to Jessie and her beauty.  When he discovers that she is in need of a husband, they agree to marry.  They are attracted to one another and while this is a quick wedding, they are soon falling in love.

Daniel hopes to use some of his money to help found Cottage hospitals in areas where poor people can receive medical care.  Jessie agrees with him.  They then head to his major home, Castle Romayne for their honeymoon.  While there, Jessie’s past is about to catch up with her.

This story weaves us through Jessie’s life and Daniel’s as well.  There is a lot of heartache and pain but the joy that Daniel and Jessie find together, is beautiful.

I enjoyed this story and know that other readers will as well.

Connie for b2b

REVIEW: I’ll never be bored with this author or this series! This is the 7th book in her Lost Lords series and I loved it. Ms. Putney has created not just complex characters, but a wonderful plot. What I loved most about it, is the Beta hero who was such a good, decent and very capable man. And even though Dr. Daniel was a kind and caring man, he was never boring or dull. His life was orderly until he unexpectedly comes into a titled inheritance, and now he must do his duty and provide an heir.

Jessie Kelham is a heroine to be reckoned with. This woman has been through so much in her young life, but she never gave up on herself or her life. Even now, as a young mother and a widow, she is ready to fight anyone that means to harm her or her child and knowing that her options are very much limited when it comes to women’s rights, she is set on thwarting her enemy by contracting a marriage of convenience.

These two shared a common goal, both needed to marry, and both had accepted that the spouses they were willing to settle on would be someone that is reasonably mature and love wasn’t required. Well, destiny had something just a bit more in mind.

Everything in this tale worked for me, from a solid pace to the wonderful dialogue. I enjoyed the progression of their relationship the most, though.

The story stands on its own even though it’s the 7th in the series, so if you have a chance to grab it, I highly recommend you do. It’s not only Jon Paul Ferrara’s cover that is beautiful. The story is as well.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

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