BOOK BLURB: Thanks to their large extended family and unconventional courtship, the Worthingtons have seen their share of scandal and excitement. But nothing has prepared them for this…
The Dowager Lady Worthington isn’t quite sure what to make of country-girl Dorothea Stern. As the granddaughter of the Duke of Bristol, Dotty is schooled in the ways and means of the nobility. But her sharp wit and outspoken nature has everyone in a tizzy. Especially their cousin, Dominic, the Marquis of Merton.
Prematurely stuffy, Dom was raised by his cheerless uncle to be wary of a host of things, including innovation, waltzing, and most perilous of all: true love. Still, there’s something about Dotty, beyond her beauty, that Dom cannot resist. But the odds are against him if he intends to win her as his bride. Will he choose loyalty to his family—or risk everything for the one woman he believes is his perfect match…
They resumed ambling on the side of the path. Suddenly there was a commotion and a shout from behind. Dotty whirled around. A small dog had grabbed the tassel on a man’s boot and was backing up growling with its tail wagging, trying to shake its prize. Foolishly, the man kept kicking out at the dog, making the animal think he was playing.
She put a hand over her mouth to keep from giggling, yet when he lifted his cane to strike the poor little thing, she rushed forward. “Here now, sir! What do you think you’re doing?” She bent to the dog who turned out to be nothing more than a puppy. Turning to the man, she narrowed her eyes and scowled. “Shame on you.”
Dotty worked on releasing the tassel from the puppy’s grip, but each time the man shook his leg, trying to get the animal off, the puppy held on harder, growling and shaking his head. “Stop moving. Are you so stupid you cannot see the dog thinks you are trying to play?”
“Get him off me,” the man shouted in a voice growing higher in fright. “Someone will pay for this. Is he your beast?”
Determined to ignore him, she counted to ten, took a breath, and finally managed to release the gold bobble from the puppy’s sharp teeth. “There now.” Picking up the dog, she stroked its wiry fur. “Where is your master?”
Just then, two school-aged boys came running up. “Oh, miss. Thank you so much. We’ve been looking for Bennie all over. He got away from us.”
By this time Bennie was snapping at the ribbons of her bonnet. Dotty laughed as she tried to free them. “Here now, sir. Those are not for you either.” She saved the ribbons and handed the puppy to one of the boys.
“We’ll pay you for the damage, miss.”
“It’s no bother.” She smiled at both of them. “Use the money to buy a lead. That will keep Bennie from running away.”
“He’s only twelve weeks old,” the other boy said proudly. “We didn’t think he could run so fast.”
“Or so far,” added the other.
“Thank you,” they both said in unison.
Ah, well. Puppies would be puppies and boys would be boys. “Run along now, and keep Bennie out of trouble.”
“Wait just a minute,” the man with the tassels growled. “You owe me compensation. Your vicious beast ruined my boots.”
“Stuff and nonsense.” Dotty closed her eyes for a moment before fixing the man with a stern look. “It was entirely your fault. If you had acted like a sensible person and just picked the poor puppy up, your boots would not have suffered any damage.”
REVIEW: Miss Dorothea (Dotty) Stern, of Stern Manor, is mourning not being with her friend, Lady Charlotte Carpenter, for their first season. Dotty’s mother had an accident breaking her leg, and now Dotty has taken over her mother’s duties. These consist of overseeing her sisters, brothers, and caring for their tenants.
A letter arrives from Lord and Lady Worthington, inviting Dotty to join Charlotte in town for her season. Charlotte is Lady Worthington’s sister and Lord Worthington’s sister, Lady Louisa, will join the two young ladies for the season. She is to stay at Stanwood House, Berkley Square, in Mayfair. Dotty’s parents agree that she should go and enjoy her season so she quickly packs and departs with her maid.
Mattheus (Matt), the Earl of Worthington and his new wife, Grace, have combined their families. She has numerous siblings and he does as well. So, they all live together.
Dominic (Dom), the Marquis of Merton, age 27, was planning on staying at the Pulteney Hotel in London for the season until his mother, Eunice, the Marchioness of Merton, recently widowed by her second husband, decided to open their home, Merton House, and enjoy the season as well. He is happy that she will be there to act as his hostess. He knows that it is time to marry so he must now concentrate on finding a bride. His mother is also hoping that he will begin a search for a bride.
After Dom’s father died, his uncle Matt Worthington, brought him up to be true to his title thus leaving him rather emotionless and with a reputation for being stuffy. Matt still tries to boss him around which irritates Dom no end.
When Dotty and Dom meet, he is enchanted with her looks, grace, and personality. Their attraction to one another grows and they enjoying spending time with one another at balls or on carriage rides. However, Dotty is just the daughter of a Squire and Dom is a Marquis. Will Dom be brave enough to break away and marry Dotty or will his domineering uncle put a stop to it?
This book started out well, but as I got into it, there seemed to be lots of characters injected into the story and I couldn’t figure out where they came from. That and Dorothea being called Dotty by one person and Thea by another made no sense at all.
I have truly enjoyed this author’s novels in the past and was eagerly anticipating reading this one. Unfortunately, it was just too confusing to enjoy.
Complimentary copy provided by the publisher
Connie for b2b
MINI REVIEW: Another great romance from Ms. Quinn. I especially liked the pace of the romance. The author took time in introducing us to the characters and slowly developed romance between the two. It actually made the steamy scenes that finally happened even more poignant and relevant.
I love it when all the elements in a romance coalesce and when two people that are different as night and day, come to a conclusion that it’s exactly those differences that are pulling them together.
I really enjoyed this read and hope you will too.
Melanie for b2b
Complimentary copy provided by the publisher
AUTHOR BIO: Bestselling author Ella Quinn’s studies and other jobs have always been on the serious side. Reading historical romances, especially Regencies, were her escape. Eventually her love of historical novels led her to start writing them. She has just finished her first series, The Marriage Game, and her new series will start in April 2016.
She is married to her wonderful husband of over thirty years. They have a son and granddaughter, one cat and a dog. After living in the South Pacific, Central America, North Africa, England and Europe, she and her husband decided to make their dreams come true and are now living on a sailboat cruising the Caribbean and North America.
She loves having readers connect with her.