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Library JournalLess than a month after her vicar father passes and she learns that her mother still lives, Mary Smith finds herself (and her virginity) up for public auction in a seedy pub by her stepbrother, Matthew. With no choice in the matter, Mary resigns herself to accept whatever fate brings. Mary certainly doesn’t anticipate a hasty marriage to Alasdair, the marquess who rescued her that evening. Mary also doesn’t anticipate that the marquess will need her comfort and love to rescue him from his nightmarish past and opium addiction as much as she needed his rescue. The final question then becomes, Can true love blossom when neither party feels there is a choice in the relationship? After all, “Alasdair wasn’t going to fall in love with her. Just save her.”
Verdict The point of view transitions between Mary and Alasdair are at times abrupt and confusing. However, the language used by Frampton (A Singular Lady) to close each chapter is engaging and quotable. Mary and Alasdair’s budding love affair and their internal conflicts with their sense of love versus duty make this romance a page-turner; recommended for most romance collections.—Heather Lisa Maneiro, Minnesota State Univ. Lib.‚ Moorhead
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