Devon, the Earl of Malton, is a hero for his deeds at the Battle of Waterloo. But he suffers terrible nightmares, and drinks himself to sleep most nights. A habit he vows to break when he awakes one morning to find a woman sharing his bed, no memory of how she got there, and her angry brother at his door.
Cathleen is mortified when her wastrel brother and his greedy wife propose a blackmail scheme involving the earl, but as a penniless war widow she's at their mercy. She goes along with the plan and sneaks into Devon's bed one night, and ends up comforting him through a night terror.
Charmed by her beauty and kindness, Devon determines that rather than pay the blackmail, he will offer his hand in marriage to Cathleen. Although she is deeply attracted to the stoic earl, Cathleen cannot understand why Devon would want to marry her. What she doesn't know is that Devon owes her a debt that can never fully be repaid
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Devon, Lord Malton, tossed in bed, the throbbing pain in his thigh pulling him from the oblivion of drunkenness into a semi-sleep that clung to him like tar.
"No," he moaned. The ghostlike images of old comrades and dead enemies drifted through his mind. Distant cannon fire rolled in the air, growing louder as light began to creep in along the edges of the sharpening visions. "No."
In a flash the world turned bright, the afternoon sun reflecting off the stone walls of Hougoumont Manor's courtyard. Around him, British soldiers and trapped French soldiers fought, the metallic ring of sabers carrying over the shouts of dying men and the screams of frightened horses.
"Cochon anglais!" A French soldier charged at Devon and he swung around to face him. "Je te tuerai."
They locked swords, the Frenchman's wild eyes meeting Devon's across the blade.
"Maintenantau diable!" Devon shoved the Frenchman back. The burly soldier staggered slightly but desperation gave him strength and he hurled himself forward.
Devon was stepping back to parry when his boot rolled on the arm of a dead man and he fell, landing hard in the mud. The Frenchman lunged again. Devon swung his sword, deflecting the blow but the Frenchman's blade slid down the length of Devon's, impaling his thigh.
"Bloody hell." Devon dug the heel of his boot into the man's chest and kicked hard. A searing pain nearly blinded him as the man's blade tore free.
The Frenchman pulled himself to his feet and advanced. Devon rose up on one knee, lifting his sword to defend himself when suddenly the flash of a red coat cut across his vision. Captain Selton stood between them, his sword clanging against the Frenchman's.
"Get back to the safety of the manor," the young officer called, swinging to repel the enemy's blade.
"I'm not going anywhere." Devon stood, gritting his teeth against the pain. He limped forward, determined to fight when the sickening sound of metal slicing flesh drowned out the cannons. Captain Selton wavered a moment then slumped to the ground.
"No!" Devon yelled.
The Frenchman, his sword still lodged in Captain Selton's chest, met Devon's eyes, smug triumph dancing in their watery depths.
"Bastard!" Devon hurled himself at the man, his pain forgotten in a rush of anger. The Frenchman's triumph turned to fear as Devon impaled him, driving him backwards across the courtyard, forcing the sword in deeper and deeper until it drove itself through his body, lodging in a wooden door in the far wall. Devon pulled out the blade and the Frenchman dropped to the ground.
Devon stepped back and his wounded leg buckled. He fell hard against the wall, his palm scraping over the rough stone as he slid down into the mud. When he pressed his hand over the wound, the blood stained his breeches and covered his fingers. Out across the courtyard, heavy clouds of black powder smoke drifted through the fighting men, passing over Captain Selton, who lay with the others, his lifeless eyes watching the sky.
"No," Devon cried in anguish. "No."
"It's all right," a soft female voice carried over the crack of gunfire. "You're safe now."
"I couldn't save him." Devon choked, struggling to breathe through the acrid smoke. "I couldn't help him."
"I know." Gentle hands stroked his hair, his forehead and cheeks, their tenderness easing his tight chest and softening the pain coursing through him. "Sleep now."
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
*An engaging regency story.. recommended
I loved this book! Cathleen and Devon are the perfect heroine and hero. Follow their journey towards love as they encounter a journey across the ocean from England to America. They are attacked by pirates, have to survive her aunt & uncle's scheming, and sort through their own misunderstanding with each other before finding true love. A great book to read if you love romance!
Devon, the Earl of Malton is lauded as a war hero but he is not the same man who went off to fight for his country. He is plagued by guilt and nightmares and when he meets Cathleen, the widow of the man who saved his life, he sees a way to end both of their suffering. A touching and romantic little novella.
This was my favorite Regency of the summer and I’m looking forward to reading her next Regency that comes out October of 2013. Hero’s Redemption is a fresh look into the era that shows the capacity to love in spite of it all. I enjoyed the characters chemistry and how they dealt with those tough situations that we continue to deal with even today. We have a battle scarred hero and a widow caught in a situation that leaves trust on the side of lacking for both of them. As the two journeys through their adventure we look forward to see how they will conquer what life throws at them.
This story pulled me in right away and I couldn't put it down.
Regencies aren't my typical cup 'o tea but I had more free time than usual last week thanks to a family camping trip so I decided to go ahead and give Hero's Redemption by Georgie Lee a shot. The story immediately sucked me in and at thirty-four thousand words, it made for some great summer reading beside the fire. I finished the story over the course of a day and never had any difficulty staying involved in Cathleen and Devon's story. Cathleen is wonderfully strong-willed and assertive. As a destitute widow, she has the unfortunate circumstance of living with her dastardly brother, Lucien, and his wife, Martha. The story starts off with Devon waking up in Cathleen's bed as part of a contrived blackmail scheme cooked up by Lucien. A hero of Waterloo, Devon suffers from terrible PTSD, including traumatic nightmares. He is smart and courageous, but also deeply wounded. Cathleen happens to comfort him during such an episode and he finds solace within her presence. The pair share an immediate attraction to one another. An unfortunate past event involving Cathleen's deceased husband also binds them together. I loved how Devon rushed to rescue Cathleen from her greedy relatives and wanted to protect and shelter her despite his initial trust issues. As a couple, their scenes together are sweet and tender, and the reader really wants for them to overcome their differences and fall in love. I'll admit to harboring some preconceived notions about what to expect from sex scenes in Regency romance (I thought it was all closed-doors). But I was pleasantly surprised to discover sensual-to-spicy lovemaking scenes. There wasn't a whole lot of action but the author managed to keep events moving right along to the very end. The characters are well developed and secondary characters contribute to the story, although I found the occasional scenes involving Lucien and Martha to be less enjoyable. The story is well written and editing is professional. It's easy to recommend Hero's Redemption to anyone looking for an easy-to-read summer romance set in the British Regency period. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
I give the story two and a half stars. Writing the story as a novella was a good decision. In my opinion, because the story is short...if the characters had reappeared from a series then the events would have seemed more plausible. Especially when some secondary characters just faded away. Also, scenes felt abruptly cut causing them to lack details. Second, this is a war hero story (based on the title) and I find those characters boring. Most war hero characters are written alike: injured, mentally affected from the war and brooding. For me it's to much emotional drama.