Another sensational, sensual Regency novel from Christina Brooke, who has become an auto-buy for me. Her Ministry of Marriage series of connected butAnother sensational, sensual Regency novel from Christina Brooke, who has become an auto-buy for me. Her Ministry of Marriage series of connected but stand-alone romances are gorgeous and sigh-worthy from page one right through to the finish.
The Greatest Lover Ever is a story of second chances and redemption. Heiress Georgie Black throws away her future with Lord Marcus Beckenham, mostly because she enjoys riling him up too much, but also because she's so infuriatingly stubborn. Marcus is as stubborn as they come as well, so when the two of them go toe-to-toe in a pre-wedding argument, he calls her bluff and calls off the wedding.
Seriously stupid move on both their parts, but if they had realised from the start how perfectly matched they were, there wouldn't be a story, would there?
Cue several years later, Georgie and Marcus have done their level best to keep their distance. Neither has properly moved on. And by moved on I mean married other people. Georgie has tried to keep her life uncomplicated by refusing all other offers of marriage, yet this has only made her fodder for gossip amongst the haut-ton (gossip being the Regency version of Facebook).
The two of them have a lot of growing up to do, and here is where author Christina Brooke is at the height of her powers; showing us how Georgie and Marcus mature and acknowledge their feelings . . . and also accept the unpalatable truth about their personalities.
I adored this insight into Georgie's state of mind when she sees Marcus again: "Oh, God, it was awful and humiliating and . . . and wonderful to see him."
The writing is gorgeous and shot through with witty bon mots: "Beckenham wished now that he had not let his temper get the better of him with Pearce. A duel might cause talk, and he needed to avoid providing yet more fodder for gossip about Georgie. He also wished to avoid getting his brains blown out, but that was a separate issue."
Pearce is the baddie; He's one reason Georgie and Marcus can't get their act tother, but their biggest obstacle is not other people but their own sheer pig-headedness.
Step by step, Marcus and Georgie evolve from stubborn, proud and wilful semi-enemies; fearful that that surrendering to love will result in loss. As they soften their opinions of each other and grow into fully realised, self-aware people, they understand that love is not surrender but a win for both of them. By loving each other they can gain the whole world.
I received and advance reader copy from Net Galley, in exchange for an honest review. ...more