Even though this novella takes place 20-some odd years before the first book in the Rumor series, Forever and a Day, I would suggest reading Forever aEven though this novella takes place 20-some odd years before the first book in the Rumor series, Forever and a Day, I would suggest reading Forever and a Day first. That way, you are not spoiling some of the story from Forever and a Day. Plus, I personally enjoyed seeing Leonard first as an older gentleman in the role of Roderick's father, and then in the novella as his younger self finding love for the second time.
Leonard, the Duke of Wentworth, has set his eyes on Lady Augustine. He is ready for marriage again after seven years of mourning his first wife. Lady Augustine has different plans though. She is consumed by a family tragedy and does not think she could make any man happy until she gets some answers.
I found this to be a very bittersweet novella. It was also pretty humorous. Leonard's dialogue, especially, was very amusing. I'm now very much invested in finding out what happened to Nathaniel. Looks like I will have to wait until July when Forever a Lady is published to learn more....more
This was a sweet novella. I like historical romances where the hero and heroine are separated for some reason. In this case the hero, Max Quinton, meeThis was a sweet novella. I like historical romances where the hero and heroine are separated for some reason. In this case the hero, Max Quinton, meets the heroine, Eleanor Hardwick, on a bet. What's supposed to be just a kiss ends up being real feelings. Eleanor is devastated when she finds out about the bet and refuses to hear Max's side of the story or trust the feelings he has professed. Five years later pass and neither has really gotten over the other. Now 30 years old, Eleanor is well on her way to spinsterhood. Eleanor and Max are reunited while Eleanor is staying with her cousin Elizabeth and keeping an eye on Elizabeth's 18 year old daughter, Caroline. While on a walk Eleanor and Caro run into Robert, a young man, whose ward just happens to be Max. Now that Max has Eleanor in his sights, he will do whatever he can to make sure Eleanor knows they are meant to be.
Eleanor could be a bit frustrating. Especially when she runs from Max a second time after she thinks he did another something very wrong. She obviously didn't learn the first time that talking is better than running. But I did like their second reunion. This time it's as they are racing to Scotland after Caro and Robert have decided to elope.
I found the dialogue witty and humorous, especially when Max was involved. I liked him very much, and he made up a lot for Eleanor's stubbornness. This story introduces us to Caro, who is the heroine in the first novel length book in this series. She's very innocent and a little immature in this novella, so I look forward to seeing how she has grown in her book.
I do wish we could have seen more of the week when Eleanor and Max first met. Much of their feelings developed during that time. By the time we meet Max, he is already declaring his love for Eleanor. I would have liked to have seen those feelings develop.
Frannie Pleasance is a little fearful of the world right now. She generally sticks to her pet shop only venturing out when she needs to. On one of herFrannie Pleasance is a little fearful of the world right now. She generally sticks to her pet shop only venturing out when she needs to. On one of her excursions, she comes across a passed out, beat up, and naked fellow. If you've read Wicked as They Come (I highly recommend you do, if you haven't), then you're probably curious to find out what happened to Casper. You get a glimpse of what his life has been like since leaving the circus and coming to London, because he is the man Frannie finds passed out and invites to stay with her.
But this isn't Casper's story; it's Frannie's. One evening she wakes up to find her shop on fire. Her shop is saved by firefighter Thom Maccallan. Frannie is quite taken with this brawny Scottish firefighter. He shows up the next day to help her search for the animals she had let free to save from the fire. But he's not only there to help her with the animals. He too is quite smitten with Frannie. I found their romance quite lovely. Thom brings Frannie out of her shell. And Frannie is able to show Thom a part of herself she has kept hidden from everybody. There is also danger surrounding their romance as they come to find out the fire was no accident and other incidents soon follow.
So far Dawson hasn't let me down with her characters. For a novella, I really felt her characters were fleshed out and beautifully done. Her alternate world is fascinating, and though I missed the circus, I was happy to visit Sang's version of London.
I got enough of Casper in this book be make me eager for his. Bring on the music!