Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

A Hellion in Her Bed (Hellions of Halstead Hall Series #2)

A Hellion in Her Bed (Hellions of Halstead Hall Series #2)

4.2 217
by Sabrina Jeffries

See All Formats & Editions

Furious at his grandmother’s ultimatum to marry or lose his inheritance, Lord Jarret Sharpe wagers his luck—and his heart—at the card table against a most unlikely opponent.

Mired in scandal after his parents’ mysterious deaths, notorious gambler Lord Jarret Sharpe agrees to tamely run the family brewery for a year if his Machiavellian


Furious at his grandmother’s ultimatum to marry or lose his inheritance, Lord Jarret Sharpe wagers his luck—and his heart—at the card table against a most unlikely opponent.

Mired in scandal after his parents’ mysterious deaths, notorious gambler Lord Jarret Sharpe agrees to tamely run the family brewery for a year if his Machiavellian grandmother rescinds her ultimatum that he marry. But the gambler in him can’t resist when beguiling Annabel Lake proposes a wager. If she wins their card game, he must help save her family’s foundering brewery. But if he wins, she must spend a night in his bed. The outcome sets off a chain of events that threatens to destroy all his plans . . . and unveils the secret Annabel has held for so long. When Jarret discovers the darker reason behind her wager, he forces her into another one—and this time he intends to win not just her body, but her heart.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Annabel Lake will do just about anything to save her family's brewery, even wager her lucky heirloom ring for another brewer's marketing help. Notorious gambling hellion Lord Jarret Sharpe, the current reluctant manager of his family's Plumtree Brewery, ups the stakes to a night in his bed, but Annabel shocks him by calling his bluff—and winning. Still, Annabel is keeping secrets, and as they gradually come to light, Jarret demands another wager, one he doesn't intend to lose. Complex, immensely appealing protagonists, a delightful profusion of diverse secondary characters (including a particularly engaging 12-year-old), the perfect touch of fascinating detail about the late Regency-era beer trade, and a plot that becomes more intriguing as it unfolds add up to another stellar read and another success for the rapidly ascending Jeffries. VERDICT Rich with family interaction, deliciously redolent of yeast and hops, and overflowing with scintillating wit and heart-stopping sensuality, this addition to Jeffries's latest addictive series satisfies while cleverly doling out tidbits that will keep readers eager for the next installment. Jeffries (The Truth About Lord Stoneville) lives in Cary, NC. [Ebook ISBN 978-1-4391-6757-1.]

Product Details

Pocket Star
Publication date:
Hellions of Halstead Hall Series , #2
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
6.96(w) x 11.32(h) x 0.98(d)

Read an Excerpt

A Hellion In Her Bed

  • London

    March 1825

    In the nineteen years since that fateful night, Jarret had grown a foot taller and had learned how to fight, and he was still gambling. Now, for a living.

    Today, however, the cards were meant to be only a distraction. Sitting at a table in the study in Gran’s town house, he laid out another seven rows.

    “How can you play cards at a time like this?” his sister Celia asked from the settee.

    “I’m not playing cards,” he said calmly. “I’m playing solitaire.”

    “You know Jarret,” his brother Gabe put in. “Never comfortable without a deck in his hand.”

    “You mean, never comfortable unless he’s winning,” his other sister, Minerva, remarked.

    “Then he must be pretty uncomfortable right now,” Gabe said. “Lately, all he does is lose.”

    Jarret stiffened. That was true. And considering that he supported his lavish lifestyle with his winnings, it was a problem.

    So of course Gabe was plaguing him about it. At twenty-six, Gabe was six years Jarret’s junior and annoying as hell. Like Minerva, he had gold-streaked brown hair and green eyes the exact shade of their mother’s. But that was the only trait Gabe shared with their straitlaced mother.

    “You can’t consistently win at solitaire unless you cheat,” Minerva said.

    “I never cheat at cards.” It was true, if one ignored his uncanny ability to keep track of every card in a deck. Some people didn’t.

    “Didn’t you just say that solitaire isn’t ‘cards’?” Gabe quipped.

    Bloody arse. And to add insult to injury, Gabe was cracking his knuckles and getting on Jarret’s nerves.

    “For God’s sake, stop that noise,” Jarret snapped.

    “This, you mean?” Gabe said and deliberately cracked his knuckles again.

    “If you don’t watch it, little brother, I’ll crack my knuckles against your jaw,” Jarret warned.

    “Stop fighting!” Celia’s hazel eyes filled with tears as she glanced at the connecting door to Gran’s bedchamber. “How can you fight when Gran might be dying?”

    “Gran isn’t dying,” said the eminently practical Minerva. Four years younger than Jarret, she lacked Celia’s flair for the dramatic . . . except in the Gothic fiction she penned.

    Besides, like Jarret, Minerva knew their grandmother better than their baby sister did. Hester Plumtree was indestructible. This “illness” was undoubtedly another ploy to make them toe her line.

    Gran had already given them an ultimatum—they had to marry within the year or the whole lot of them would be disinherited. Jarret would have thrown the threat back in her face, but he couldn’t sentence his siblings to a life with no money.

    Oliver had tried to fight her edict, then had surprised them by getting himself leg-shackled to an American woman. But that hadn’t satisfied Gran. She still wanted her pound of flesh from the rest of them. And now there were fewer than ten months left.

    That was what had put Jarret off his game lately—Gran’s attempt to force him into marrying the first female who didn’t balk at the Sharpe family reputation for scandal and licentiousness. It made him desperate to win a large score, so he could support his siblings on his winnings and they could all tell her to go to hell.

    But desperation was disaster at the gaming tables. His success depended on keeping a cool head and not caring about the outcome. Only then could he play to the cards he was dealt. Desperation made a man take risks based on emotion instead of skill. And that happened to him too much, lately.

    What on earth did Gran think she would accomplish by forcing them to marry? She’d merely spawn more miserable marriages to match that of their parents.

    But Oliver isn’t miserable.

    Oliver had been lucky. He’d found the one woman who would put up with his nonsense and notoriety. The chance of that happening twice in their family was small. And four more times? Abysmally small. Lady Fortune was as fickle in life as in cards.

    With a curse, Jarret rose to pace. Unlike the study at Halstead Hall, Gran’s was airy and light, with furnishings of the latest fashion and a large scale model of Plumtree Brewery prominently displayed atop a rosewood table.

    He gritted his teeth. That damned brewery—she’d run it successfully for so long that she thought she could run their lives as well. She always had to be in control. One look at the papers stacked high on her desk made it clear that the brewery was becoming too much for her to handle at seventy-one. Yet the obstinate woman refused to hire a manager, no matter how Oliver pressed her.

    “Jarret, did you write that letter to Oliver?” Minerva asked.

    “Yes, while you were at the apothecary’s. The footman has taken it to the post.” Although Oliver and his new wife had already left for America to meet her relations, Jarret and Minerva wanted him to know of Gran’s illness in case it was serious.

    “I hope he and Maria are enjoying themselves in Massachusetts,” Minerva said. “He seemed very upset that day in the library.”

    “You’d be upset, too, if you thought you’d caused our parents’ deaths,” Gabe pointed out.

    That had been Oliver’s other surprise—his revelation that he and Mother had quarreled the day of the tragedy, which had led to her going off in a rage in search of Father.

    “Do you think Oliver was right?” Celia asked. “Was it his fault that Mama shot Papa?” Celia had been only four when it happened, so she had little recollection of it.

    That wasn’t the case for Jarret. “No.”

    “Why not?” Minerva asked.

    How much should he say? He had a strong memory of . . .

    No, he shouldn’t make baseless accusations, no matter who they concerned. But he should tell them his other concern. “I well remember Father at the picnic, muttering, ‘Where the devil is she going?’ I looked across the field and saw Mother on a horse, headed in the direction of the hunting lodge. That memory has been gnawing at me.”

    Gabe took up Jarret’s line of reasoning. “So if she’d left in search of Father, as Oliver seems certain that she did, she would have found him at the picnic. She wouldn’t have gone elsewhere looking for him.”

    “Precisely,” Jarret said.

    Minerva pursed her lips. “Which means that Gran’s version of events might be correct. Mother rode to the hunting lodge because she was upset and wanted to be away from everyone. Then she fell asleep, was startled by Father, shot him—”

    “—and shot herself when she saw him dead?” Celia finished. “I don’t believe it. It makes no sense.”

    Gabe cast her an indulgent glance. “Only because you don’t want to believe that any woman would be so reckless as to shoot a man without thinking.”

    “I would certainly never do such a fool thing myself,” Celia retorted.

    “But you have a passion for shooting and a healthy respect for guns,” Minerva pointed out. “Mother had neither.”

    “Exactly,” Celia said. “So she picked up a gun without forethought and shot it for the first time that day? That’s ridiculous. For one thing, how did she load it?”

    They all stared at her.

    “None of you ever thought about that, did you?”

    “She could have learned,” Gabe put in. “Gran knows how to shoot. Just because Mother never shot a gun around us doesn’t mean Gran didn’t teach her.”

    Celia frowned. “On the other hand, if Mother set out to shoot Father deliberately as Oliver claims, someone could have helped her load the pistol—a groom, perhaps. Then she could have lain in wait for Father near the picnic and followed him to the hunting lodge. That makes more sense.”

    “It’s interesting that you should mention the grooms,” Jarret said. “They would have had to saddle her horse—they might have known where she was going and when she left. She might even have said why she was riding out. If we could talk to them—”

    “Most of them left service at Halstead Hall when Oliver closed the place down,” Minerva pointed out.

    “That’s why I’m thinking of hiring Jackson Pinter to find them.”

    Celia snorted.

    “You may not like him,” Jarret told her, “but he’s one of the most respected Bow Street Runners in London.” Although Pinter was supposed to be helping them explore the backgrounds of potential mates, there was no reason the man couldn’t take on another mission.

    The door to Gran’s bedchamber opened, and Dr. Wright entered the study.

    “Well?” Jarret asked sharply. “What’s the verdict?”

    “Can we see her?” Minerva added.

    “Actually, she’s been asking for Lord Jarret,” Dr. Wright said.

    Jarret tensed. With Oliver gone, he was the eldest. No telling what Gran had cooked up for him to do, now that she was “ill.”

    “Is she all right?” Celia asked, alarm plain on her face.

    “At the moment, she’s only suffering some chest pain. It may come to nothing.” Dr. Wright met Jarret’s gaze. “But she needs to keep quiet and rest until she feels better. And she refuses to do that until she can speak to you, my lord.” When the others rose, he added, “Alone.”

    With a terse nod, Jarret followed him into Gran’s room.

    “Don’t say anything to upset her,” Dr. Wright murmured, then left and closed the door.

    At the sight of his grandmother, Jarret caught his breath. He had to admit that Gran didn’t look her usual self. She was propped up against the bed pillows, so she wasn’t dying, but her color certainly wasn’t good.

    He ignored the clutch of fear in his chest. Gran was merely a little under the weather. This was just another attempt to control their lives. But she was in for a surprise if she thought that the tactics that had worked on Oliver would work on him.

    She gestured to a chair by the bed, and Jarret warily took a seat.

    “That fool Wright tells me I cannot leave my bed for a month at the very least,” she grumbled. “A month! I cannot be away from the brewery for that long.”

    “You must take as long as necessary to get well,” Jarret said, keeping his voice noncommittal until he was sure what she was up to.

    “The only way I shall loll about in this bed for a month is if I have someone reliable looking after things at the brewery. Someone I trust. Someone with a vested interest in making sure it runs smoothly.”

    When her gaze sharpened on him, he froze. So that’s what she was plotting.

    “Not a chance,” he said, jumping to his feet. “Don’t even think it.” He wasn’t about to put himself under Gran’s thumb. Bad enough that she was trying to dictate when he married—she wasn’t going to run his whole life, too.

    She took a labored breath. “You once begged me for this very opportunity.”

    “That was a long time ago.” When he’d been desperate to find a place for himself. Then he’d learned that no matter what place you found, Fate could snatch it from you at a moment’s notice. Your hopes for the future could be dashed with a word, your parents taken in the blink of an eye, and your family’s good name ruined for spite.

    Nothing in life was certain. So a man was better off traveling light, with no attachments and no dreams. It was the only way to prevent disappointment.

    “You’re going to inherit the brewery one day,” she pointed out.

    “Only if we all manage to marry within the year,” he countered. “But assuming that I inherit, I’ll hire a manager. Which you should have done years ago.”

    That made her frown. “I do not want some stranger running my brewery.”

    The perennial argument was getting old.

    “If you don’t want to do it, I’ll have to put Desmond in charge,” she added.

    His temper flared. Desmond Plumtree was Mother’s first cousin, a man they all despised—especially him. Gran had threatened before to leave the brewery to the bastard and she knew how Jarret felt about that, so she was using his feelings against him.

    “Go ahead, put Desmond in charge,” he said, though it took every ounce of his will not to fall prey to her manipulation.

    “He knows even less about it than you do,” she said peevishly. “Besides, he’s busy with his latest enterprise.”

    He hid his relief. “There has to be someone else who knows the business well enough to take over.”

    She coughed into her handkerchief. “No one I trust.”

    “And you trust me to run it?” He uttered a cynical laugh. “I seem to recall your telling me a few years ago that gamblers are parasites on society. Aren’t you worried I’ll suck the life out of your precious brewery?”

    She had the good grace to color. “I only said that because I couldn’t stand watching you waste your keen mind at the gaming tables. That is not a suitable life for a clever man like yourself, especially when I know you are capable of more. You have had some success with your investments. It wouldn’t take you long to get your bearings at the brewery. And I will be here for you to consult if you need advice.”

    The plaintive note in her voice gave him pause. She sounded almost . . . desperate. His eyes narrowed. He might be able to make this work to his advantage, after all.

    He sat down once more. “If you really want me to run the brewery for a month, then I want something in return.”

    “You will have a salary, and I am sure we could come to terms on—”

    “Not money. I want you to rescind your ultimatum.” He leaned forward to stare her down. “No more threats to disinherit us if we don’t marry according to your dictate. Things will return to how they were before.”

    She glared at him. “That is not going to happen.”

    “Then I suppose you’ll be hiring a manager.” He rose and headed for the door.

    “Wait!” she cried.

    He paused to glance back at her with eyebrows raised.

    “What if I rescind it just for you?”

    He fought a smile. She must be desperate indeed if she was willing to bargain. “I’m listening.”

    “I will have Mr. Bogg change the will so that you inherit the brewery no matter what.” Her voice turned bitter. “You can stay a bachelor until you die.”

    It was worth considering. If he owned the brewery, he could help his brother and sisters if they couldn’t meet Gran’s terms by the end of the year. They’d be on their own until Gran died, of course, but then Jarret could support them. It was a better situation than their present one. “I could live with that.”

    She dragged in a rasping breath. “But you’ll have to agree to stay on at the brewery until the year is up.”

    He tensed. “Why?”

    “Too many people depend on it for their livelihood. If I am to leave the place to you, I must be sure you can keep it afloat, even if you hire a manager to run it once I am gone. You need to know enough to be able to hire the right person, and I need assurance that you will not let it rot.”

    “God forbid you should trust your own grandson to keep it safe.” But she did have a point. He hadn’t set foot in the place in nineteen years. What did he know about the brewing business anymore?

    He could learn. And he would, too, if that’s what it took to stop Gran from meddling in their lives for good. But he would do it on his own terms.

    “Fine,” he said. “I’ll stay on until the year is up.” When she broke into a smile, he added, “But I want complete control. I’ll keep you informed about the business, and you may express your opinions, but my decisions will be final.”

    That wiped the smile from her face.

    “I’ll run Plumtree Brewery as I see fit without any interference from you,” he went on. “And you will put that in writing.”

    The steel in her blue eyes told him she wasn’t as ill as she pretended. “You can do a great deal of damage in a year.”

    “Exactly. If you’ll recall, this wasn’t my idea.”

    “Then you must promise not to institute any major changes.”

    He crossed his arms over his chest. “No.”

    Alarm flared in her features. “At least promise not to make risky investments.”

    “No. You either let me have full control or find yourself a manager.”

    It felt good to have the upper hand. He refused to have her coming behind him, second-guessing every decision. If he was going to run the place, he would run it his way. And once the year was up, he’d be free to live his life as he pleased . . . and ensure that his siblings could do so as well.

    Not that Gran would accept his terms. She’d never given up control of anything, for even a day. She certainly wouldn’t give it to her “parasite” of a grandson for a year.

    So it was with some surprise that he heard her say, “Very well, I will meet your demands. I will have it put into writing for you by tomorrow.”

    The gleam in her eyes gave him pause, but it was gone so fast, he was sure he’d imagined it.

    “I do have one caveat,” she continued. “You must keep Mr. Croft on as your secretary.”

    Jarret groaned. Gran’s secretary at the brewery was one of the strangest men he’d ever met. “Must I?”

    “I know he seems odd, but I promise that in a week or so you will find yourself glad that you kept him on. He’s indispensable to the brewery.”

    Well, it was a small price to pay for gaining his life back. He’d definitely gotten the better end of their bargain.

  • Meet the Author

    Sabrina Jeffries is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of several Regency-set historical romance series, including the Royal Brotherhood, the School for Heiresses, the Hellions of Halstead Hall, the Duke’s Men, and the Sinful Suitors. When she’s not writing in a coffee-fueled haze, she’s traveling with her husband, caring for her adult autistic son, or indulging in one of her passions: jigsaw puzzles, chocolate, music, and costume parties. With more than nine million books in print in twenty languages, the North Carolina author never regrets tossing aside a budding career in academics for the sheer joy of writing fun fiction and hopes that one day a book of hers will end up saving the world. She always dreams big.

    Customer Reviews

    Average Review:

    Post to your social network


    Most Helpful Customer Reviews

    See all customer reviews

    A Hellion in Her Bed (Hellions of Halstead Hall Series #2) 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 217 reviews.
    LASR_Reviews More than 1 year ago
    Originally posted at: www.longandshortreviews.blogspot.com **** Jarret Sharpe is sure, even if you do everything right, fate can still take away everything you love. Consequently, he avoids love. He makes his money gambling, answers to no one, and wants responsibility for nothing. Somewhat of a Greek god in the flesh, Jarret attracts all the women necessary to satisfy his needs, so his grandmother's ultimatum, to wed with the year or be disinherited, rankles. When he bargains with her to run the family brewery for a year, in lieu of taking a wife, he sets himself on a collision course with one desperate, determined Annabel Lake. Annabel, brewster for her brother's brewery that is failing, sees her brother overwhelmed and resorting to alcohol to drown his worries. He neglects the brewery that is in need of aggressive management if the family is to continue making a living in ale making, a business the Lake family has been prosperous in for years. Annabel "takes the bull by the horns", makes a plan, enlists the help of her sister-in-law and Geordie, and goes to London to make a deal with Plumtree Brewery, a powerful competitor. Annabel is an intriguing contradiction in that she is forthright yet secretive, naïve about some things but intelligent and wise about business. She takes a calculated risk and calls Jarret's bluff on a wager and sets off a chain of events that entice the reader into a world of secrets, shenanigans, sensuality, and sizzling sex. As Annabel and Jarret struggle in their business dealings, in emotional upheavals, and in their unacknowledged search for redemption, the secondary characters play important roles. Eleven-year-old George is one of the most endearing. He touches the heart as he struggles to transition from child to young man, especially with his history. A Hellion in Her Bed flames with conflicts that create a furor fueled by the meddling of others and malicious gossip above and beyond the inner conflicts that seem to stymie both Annabel and Jarret emotional maturation. Neither can move on until they realize that holding on the past has kept them from looking to the future and its possibilities. Sabrina Jefferies' remarkable writing style makes this story sparkle, sizzle, and seethe with life. The imagery brings forth the setting in full Technicolor and engages all the senses. The characters' emotions-the turmoil, stress, strife, humor, and love pull the reader into A Hellion in Her Bed to enjoy a sensational vicarious experience. It's a "goody".
    streetmouse More than 1 year ago
    Wonderful, engaging story, as always from Ms. Jeffries. The Sharpe family continues to grow on me, and I love that there were two families full of fun characters to enjoy in this book-- the Sharpes and Annabel's family. Loved it!
    romanceluvr More than 1 year ago
    I really liked this story. It was as good as the first in this series and I would recommed both stories. I would have loved to have this Hellion in my bed!
    SusanPage More than 1 year ago
    "Hellion in her Bed" is the second book in Sabrina Jeffries new Hellions of Halstead Hall series. From the moment I picked up the novel until I put down after finishing it, I thought that "Hellion in her Bed" had one of the most intriguing plot elements I'd read in a regency-era romance in a while. By-blows, or illegitimate children, are not uncommon in historical novels. If anything having a child out of wedlock is reserved for the lead male (as seen in Eloisa James' "A Duke of Her Own") or a minor character. Admittedly, Elizabeth Hoyt's "To Beguile a Beast" features a heroine with two illegitimate children, but there was no need for subterfuge due to her status as a well-known mistress. In Hellion, Annabel Lake must watch her son be raised by her brother and sister-in-law while she is merely his aunt. Jeffries is able to show the reader Annabel's pain as she assists the raising of her son from afar. The pain is sharp and painful and real. Her secret is actually an adequate as a conflict to keep Annabel and Jarret apart. Lord Jarret Sharpe is the typical carefree rake with commitment issues found in 95% of all romances. He has his reasons for building a wall around his heart, but don't they all? He is likable and exudes sex appeal off the pages, but that still makes Jarret feel uninteresting in his commonality. Even his friend Giles Masters seemed a bit more interesting than he was at times. No matter its small problems, Sabrina Jeffries' writing in "Hellion in Her Bed" sparkles with humor and emotion. The book has an interesting premise and a realistic, sympathetic heroine. With such good writing, those two things are enough to make the book worth buying. "Hellion in Her Bed" by Sabrina Jeffries is scheduled to be released on September 21st. http://www.examiner.com/romance-novel-in-arlington/susan-renee-page
    mhartley More than 1 year ago
    I love all of her books! Its awesome the way she pulls the family members together into each book so you have updates on what is going on with characters you've already read about and at the same time giving you another incredible story! I would recommend any of her books!
    LadyScarlet More than 1 year ago
    Great read. Hero and Heroine are well matched. Love that the heroine is an intelligent business woman who drives the arrogant hero crazy with her stubborness and secrets!
    Mirabelle8 More than 1 year ago
    A Hellion in her bed, book #2 of The Hellions of Halstead Hall series. I love Ms. Jeffries's characters Jarret Sharpe and Annabel Lake It’s the story of a grandmother who wishes that her grandchildren would settle down and marry so she can enjoy great-grandchildren’s. It’s also the mystery surrounding the deaths of both parents of Jarret . Jarret must marry by year's end or be disinherited. Annabel is beautiful, talented and smart woman and Jarret a gorgeous and rich man. Both meet and.... Funny story of how Jarret’s brothers and sisters try to match them together. Lots of humour, mystery, romance and love. I love her descriptive style of writing. If you are a fan of Sabrina Jeffries, then you must read this book, it's well written. She is a great writer! I will definitely read book #3 How to Woo a reluctant lady.
    A-Greene More than 1 year ago
    A Hellion in Her Bed is the second installment of the Hellions of Hallstead Hall. This book took a little time to catch me, but it did not leave me disappointed. Wed before the end of the year or be disinherited, Lord Jarret Sharpe is not all interested in his grandmother’s ultimatum. He would rather continue is life as a gambler and rake. He also is not interested in running her brewery, unfortunately, his grandmother is ill and he has no choice but to take over for her. Annabel Lake is a sassy brewster and a “ruined” woman, who will do anything to save her family’s brewery, even make a bet with the dangerously handsome Lord Sharpe. The plot was wonderful! I’ve never read anything like this and I really enjoyed the historical brewery aspect of this novel. I liked how Annabel was not the average, lovely debutant. She is thirty, a spinster, and “ruined” while Jarret is my favorite kind of hero. The characters were fun together: witty and sexy. The romance is sweet and slow building, yet I like my books to have a little more steam. Now, I need to get my hands on the rest of this series!
    PanolaJD More than 1 year ago
    Furious at his grandmother’s ultimatum to marry or lose his inheritance, Lord Jarret Sharpe wagers his luck—and his heart—at the card table against a most unlikely opponent. Mired in scandal after his parents’ mysterious deaths, notorious gambler Lord Jarret Sharpe agrees to tamely run the family’s brewery for a year if his Machiavellian grandmother rescinds her ultimatum that he marry. But the gambler in him can’t resist when beguiling Annabel Lake proposes a wager. If she wins their card game, he must help save her family’s foundering brewery. But if he wins, she must spend a night in his bed. The outcome sets off a chain of events that threatens to destroy all his plans…and unveils the secret Annabel has held for so long. When Jarret discovers the darker reason behind her wager, he forces her into another one—and this time he intends to win not just her body, but her heart. Annabel is in a desperate situation, her brother has taken to drinking while their family brewery is losing money, thus she decides to plead her case to another brewery house in hopes of combining business. Things don't work out as planned though when the brewery she wishes to work with has recently changed management and instead of placing her hopes in another strong indigent female boss, she's making under the table bets with a gambling rake - bets that begin to lead her on a slippery slope into lust and repeating mistakes from her heavily guarded past. Lord Jerret is begrudgingly assisting his grandmother by running the brewery in her absence and is tempted both by Annabel herself and by her daring business deals. Can they both save both her family's future as well as their heart in A Hellion in Her Bed? I can easily get sucked into a Sabrina Jeffries's book because her writing style appeals to me on all levels. Her chapters flow smoothly, her characters are very realistic, and her plots are usually something new with a twist that it's hard not to become fascinated by the overall tale as well. Yet I find I'm reading this series all out of order again beginning with Book # 2 instead of #1 (a usual bad habit of mine), but at least I understand the general theme of the Hellion siblings and highly enjoy it. The side characters all add some quirky entertainment without over-shining the leads and the romantic growth between Jerret and Annabel was nice - not coming on too strong but growing gradually throughout and expect lots of fun flirting. Jerret grew on me throughout the story, as a reader, we get glimpses of him as a sorrowful youth after the tragic loss of his parents to the stubborn cocky adult male he's grown into. Right off the back, we see the emotional barriers he puts up to prevent being hurt again and that helps the reader understand his relationship struggles, especially with Annabel. On the other hand, Annabel is punishing herself for a mistakes she made in her youth and I feel both frustrated in her actions but admire her tenacity in handling everything. She's just a stubborn as Jerret and the two adorably bunt heads at time, but from the very beginning they come off as the perfect pair.
    jazmanjo More than 1 year ago
    I am into historical romance and I love series books. Recommend you read the Hellions of Halstead series. Great author.
    harstan More than 1 year ago
    In 1825, Annabel Lake wants to save her family's brewery that seems heading to bankruptcy. The desperate spinster offers a bet to obtain help from rival Plumtree Brewery. Current manager Lord Jarret Sharpe hates the beer business that his grandmother blackmailed him into running for a year. He never recovered from the shocking murders of his parents two decades ago so he turned to cards as a safety net; his sibling insists Jarret cannot breathe without cards in his hands. He accepts her wager, but offers different terms. Instead of her lucky heirloom ring for his marketing assistance, he demands she spends a night in his bed. His smirk turns to shock when Annabel accepts his stakes. Even more stunning she beats the card shark at his game. He travels to her brewery to pay off his debt. As the two brewery managers become acquainted, they fall in love, but she distrusts gamblers so he raises the stakes especially after learning her dark secret. With a charming lead couple supported by a strong cast mostly of family (readers will want a Victorian starring one current tweener) and a fabulous insightful look at the beer business, fans will toast Sabrina Jeffries. The second Hellions of Halstead Hall late Regency romance (see The Truth About Lord Stoneville) is a fantastic historical as the second Sharpe rakehell loses at the tables but wins at hearts. Harriet Klausner
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    BeboMurf More than 1 year ago
    I have read ALL of Sabrina Jeffries books and have not been disappointed with any. Keeps your attention and hanging on till the end. Can not wait for more.
    skelley55 More than 1 year ago
    This is a great series. The characters are not the "norm" nor are their stories. I enjoyed Jarret and Annabel, a good love story.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    terina More than 1 year ago
    I enjoyed this book and worth for me go on to next book 
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Kayla9660 More than 1 year ago
    Subrina Jeffries does not disappoint you. This will give you hours of enjoyment. Well worth the cost and you will definitely want the rest of the series to see who actually did the dastardly deed to their family.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    SGB1 More than 1 year ago
    So in the 5 book series this was my favorite. Good stroey, fun characters, entertaining plot. Nice distraction for a couple on nights.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago