Book Review

‘Baron’ by Joanna Shupe

b-jsSTORY: Born into one of New York’s most respected families, William Sloane is a railroad baron who has all the right friends in all the right places. But no matter how much success he achieves, he always wants more.

Having secured his place atop the city’s highest echelons of society, he’s now setting his sights on a political run. Nothing can distract him from his next pursuit—except, perhaps, the enchanting con artist he never saw coming . . .

Ava Jones has eked out a living the only way she knows how. As “Madame Zolikoff,” she hoodwinks gullible audiences into believing she can communicate with the spirit world. But her carefully crafted persona is nearly destroyed when Will Sloane walks into her life—and lays bare her latest scheme.

The charlatan is certain she can seduce the handsome millionaire into keeping her secret and using her skills for his campaign—unless he’s the one who’s already put a spell on her . . .

REVIEW: Will Sloane is watching a medium, Madam Zolikoff, ply her trade at a theater feeling disgust as he watches her dupe the people. His plan is to shut her down and run her out of town.

Will has been asked by John Bennett to partner with him on the ticket for lieutenant governor. Will’s father had always wanted him to be in politics. Both Will and Bennett are the theater together. Bennett is completely enthralled by Madam Zolikoff, believing she can truly talk the dead. This is something which could ruin his political career.

Will is from a very prominent New York family and is the owner of the Northeast Railroad. He decides to meet with the madam and see if he can run her off. However, she stands up to him telling him she won’t let him run her off. The woman’s real name is Ava Jones and she does not care who he is. He is not going to intimidate her. She feels if Bennett finds comfort in what she tells him, it’s no one else’s business. Privately, she is doing this to make money to get her siblings out of working in the dirty city. Her dream is to buy a farm where they can all live in fresh air.

Now, Will has decided he must look for a bride. At nearly 30, and quite wealthy, the time is right. His search for a bride should help his political campaign too. He has four women on his list of possibilities.

Will’s sister, Lizzie, helps run his firm. She is married to Emmett Cavanaugh, owner of East Coast Steel. When Will tells her his plan to marry and the names of the young ladies on his list, she is appalled at his selection saying the girls are all too immature for him.

When Ava’s brother, Tom, is arrested for stealing, she has no choice but to ask Will to use his influence and get him out of jail. He is able to do so and offers the boy a job. But Ava, in return, has to agree to attend a political rally. She reluctantly agrees.

Will belongs to the exclusive Knickerbocker Club in New York. Most of the wealthy and elite men belong as well.

Will is impressed by Ava’s stubbornness and dedication to her family. Soon, Will and Ava give into their attraction to each other. While Will wants more from their relationship, Ava realizes that their backgrounds are too different for them to ever be a couple. Is there any way for Will to convince her otherwise?

I have enjoyed the Knickerbocker Club series by this author. The characters are all strong and the stories are fascinating. Don’t miss it.

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

Connie for b2b


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