Lady Evie Chesterfield is a darling of the ton who refuses to become engaged. She's been desperately in love with her brother's friend, Richard Maitland, Marquess of Westfall, since forever. But the dark, dangerous marquess only sees her as a friend and refuses to marry any woman. When circumstances change and Evie has no choice but to take a husband, she decides to convince London's most notorious gentleman to marry her by seducing the scoundrel.
Richard Maitland decided long ago that he wanted nothing to do with love. So when the gorgeous, off-limits Evie asks him for lessons in seduction, Richard knows he's playing with fire. Despite Richard's determination to protect her from his dastardly reputation, he is tested at every turn by his need for the infuriating, but enticing, Lady Evie. Before too long he is faced with making an impossible choice
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"Oh, Rich, how naughty you are," the Viscountess Benchley said with a breathless laugh.
Lord Richard George Maitland tugged her into his lap, his fingers moving with deft skill as they slipped under the skirts of her gown and inched their way up to her thighs. He moved with slow, sensual intent, allowing her to understand what he wanted and that he was about to take her. Despite the teasing way he licked at her lips and circled her inner thighs, when he tumbled her he wanted it quick and hard.
"Open your legs."
Arousal darkened her gaze, and she dropped her forehead to his. "Here? You mean ... for us to make love here, in Lady Gladstone's gardens?"
A smile tipped the corner of his lips. "Fucking. That is what I offer you, Maria."
She quivered, panting at his crudeness.
"Do you object?"
"No ... I ... Yes — my husband."
He stilled. "Then return inside."
"Visit me tonight," Maria said, wetting her lips. "My husband will be at his club and I —"
Suddenly he was bored — of her, the house party, and even with his damned charmed life. He gently pushed her from his lap, picked up his glass of champagne, and stood. Distress glittered in her gaze as if she instinctively recognized he was ending a liaison that had not even gotten the chance to be established. They had been dancing around each other for weeks, and he had been a tad bit reluctant, for he had never taken a married woman to his bed before. The idea had held enormous appeal an hour ago, but now a bitter flavor of distaste coated his tongue. How fickle women were with their love and favors. Only a few months ago, society had declared the viscountess's marriage a love match.
God's blood, it was laughable.
"Go inside to your husband, Maria. You made your choice when you married your viscount; do your duty to him. The damn fool reveres the very ground upon which you walk. Try to find in your inconstant heart some affection and respect for the man."
Her face reddened and a hand fluttered to her throat. "Please, Richard."
She stretched up on her toes and pressed a wet kiss against his lips. Not very well done at all. No doubt she meant to entice him with her passion, instead she slobbered over his chin like an eager pup. He gently eased her from him. "Return inside. Dance with your husband and reserve your passions for him. I was very foolish to even contemplate a dalliance with you."
He ignored her gasp of hurt and turned away only to falter. Lady Aurelia, Countess Trenear, stood frozen, her eyes flitting between Richard and Maria. The countess was the epitome of beauty, sheathed in an icy blue gown that clung to her willowy frame. Her dark auburn hair curled becomingly against her cheek, and her light blue eyes glowed with wariness. Those arms had once held him close as they strained together toward ecstasy. Deep inside, he had dreaded his reaction to seeing her again, but he was now curiously indifferent.
"Hello, Richard," she said with a tentative smile. Maria glanced between them, then, with a sob, fled.
The countess strolled closer. "Lady Benchley seems distressed." At his silence, Aurelia continued. "How lovely to see you again, Richard. It's been a while."
It had been two years since he had been foolish enough to tell her he loved her and asked her to marry him. She had been mercenary enough to reject his hand because he was a second son, despite the fact she had been carrying his child. After her refusal, he had approached her father, hoping to secure his approval. The courage it had taken to face the earl after Richard had seduced his daughter and gotten her with child had been no easy feat. It hardly mattered Aurelia had been a willing participant and that there were times Richard felt as if he had been the one to fall under her charms and wiles. He had still felt like a cad, a libertine, and undeserving of her.
Her father had been even more heartless in his refusal of Richard's offer.
"Countess," he said flatly with a short, mocking bow.
He chuckled roughly when her hands fluttered delicately to wrap around her middle, and her lips formed a moue of regret, her eyes glittering with unshed tears. There was nothing frail about her — she had been happily persuaded by her ambitions to terminate their child and marry a man twice her age ... all for a wealth and prestige he'd had no hopes of accomplishing. Every secret smile across the dance floor of a ball, the sighs of happiness and completion, the promises ... God, the promises, they had all been sweet lies he'd eagerly lapped up.
The mere memory of how his heart had pounded with anguished hope as he'd tried to hammer at her resistance filled him with disgust.
"You disappeared from society's events with no words after ... after ..." She laughed nervously and wetted her lips. An action that once would have filled him with raging need for her. Richard was damned grateful the only thing stirring inside of him was impatience. After her betrayal, he joined the army as a reporting officer. His love for her had been in vain, and he'd been unable to stay in London. It would have been unbearable for him to pretend indifference and idly stand by as she became the Countess of Trenear, so he had fled.
The past two years had seen him living on the edge of danger, scouting out trouble for the army, even behind enemy lines. His devil-may-care attitude had left him intact apart from a couple of minor scratches. He did not mention his commission to his parents, the Duke and Duchess of Salop, who seemed unconcerned to see so little of him. When on furlough in London he did not wear his uniform or mention the war. His friends' questions as to his whereabouts were ignored or answered enigmatically with "Here and there."
From the tone of his father's letters, which Richard's valet sent on to Portugal and reached him erratically, they assumed he was living a life of wild debauchery abroad. His man, Timmons, continued to live in Richard's lodgings and answer social invitations on his behalf, declining those he would not be able to attend. Timmons was the only person he bothered to communicate with back in England.
Somehow the polite world thought he was a disreputable rake.
Rubbish, of course. He'd only removed the desire in his heart to marry, and he did not believe in the idiocy of love. He would never again place his trust in the sweet lies that spilled from a woman's lips. When ladies made their choice of husband, their criteria were based on wealth and societal power, not tender sentiments.
When he was in England, he gambled, raced rather recklessly at times, and he tupped women of all classes. He'd come to realize the women of high society were just as free with their favors as those who walked the dirtiest streets of London. The ladies of the ton were simply more cunning and diabolically discreet. Did any of them truly believe in honor and fidelity? He had yet to meet a lady who was constant. Even his mother had a discreet lover to which his father turned a blind eye for reasons beyond Richard's understanding.
"Where have you been, Richard?"
"I'm not interested in this ... whatever the bloody hell this is," he said, spreading his hands to encompass them.
"Please, you have no idea how much I've regretted —"
She gasped as he stepped in so close she was almost flush to his chest. "The only thing I regret, Aurelia, is that I did not see your true character before I made a fool of myself."
She paled. "I —" Her throat worked on a swallow. "Please, listen to me."
"What could we possibly have to say to each other?"
"I thought we could be friends. I've missed you. What we had was —"
His harsh bark of laughter had a flush covering her face.
"We had nothing. I offered you marriage and my love, and you refused because the earl had more wealth and influence to help your family. I am not interested in your overtures of friendship, Lady Trenear. Do not approach me again, my cordiality and forgiveness will extend only so far."
He stepped away from her and walked deeper into the beautiful gardens, away from the revelry of the well-attended house party. Why in God's name had he even accepted the invitation? He should have traveled down to Derbyshire with his older brother, Francis, or to the seaside. Anything would have been better than this intolerable gathering.
Richard rounded a corner and passed a maze, moving to the hidden alcove. As he drew closer, the sound of awful retching reached his ears. A few seconds later the scene came into view and the explanation for the offensive sounds made itself evident. A young lady was bent over, casting up her accounts and groaning. He considered leaving, he'd had enough interactions with females to last him the month, but a sob hiccupped from her and then more of that blasted retching.
"May I offer you any assistance?"
She muffled a squeak and lurched upright from her bent-over position so fast she stumbled. She lifted a handkerchief that was crushed in her hands to dab at her lips. Her cheeks turned a pretty shade of pink. "I am terribly mortified!"
Her eyes were red and a bit swollen from crying, her nose, too, if he was not mistaken. Her cheeks were splotched and even the curls caressing her cheeks were limp. Beneath the dishevelment, the young lady was ravishing with her golden hair and eyes so green they were like the grass they stood upon. Holy God, she is beautiful. Her frame was petite but elegant, with lushly sensual curves. His cock twitched and flexed, and the boredom that had been coursing through his veins dissipated.
"Who are you?" The question slipped from him before he'd even formed the thought.
A severe frown lowered her brows. "I should wait to be introduced, otherwise it will be highly improper."
He glanced down. "I've seen you casting up your accounts. Under the current circumstances, I believe we have gone past the bloody need for strict formality."
Her eyes widened, and she retreated a few steps. At least she hadn't swooned or dissolved into a fit of hysterics at his lack of subtlety. He sent a swift prayer to the heavens for small mercies. "Will you permit me your name?"
She scowled and remained muted. Apparently, he'd encountered a young lady who did not find him charming. After an awkward silence, he said with a short bow, "Lord Richard Maitland at your service."
She canted her head to one side, her curious eyes considering him, dissecting him with their beautiful piercing quality. "Are you a despoiler of innocence?"
Well ... he'd not expected that bit of forthrightness. "I beg your pardon?"
Her eyes flashed. "Are you a rake, a libertine, a degenerate, a despoiler of innocence?"
Good God. He reflected on the reputation that had been following him. A libertine of the first order. "No."
She made a skeptical sound. "How are you acquainted with my family?"
"Lord and Lady Gladstone are your parents?"
"I am good friends with your brother, Elliot, Viscount Ravenswood. We were friends at Eton and then Oxford. We share a love of thoroughbreds. He invited me here. Are you his little Evie who hounded him to play tea whenever he visited from school for the holidays?"
The mistrust in her eyes abated, and she took a deep breath, then offered him a radiant smile. Bloody hell.
"I never knew Elliot spoke of me with affection."
"It was more mild annoyance."
She sobered and he felt extraordinarily bereft to see her smile vanish. He vaguely recalled Ravenswood hammering about his younger sister with affection. Good Christ, the man had made it sound like she was an annoying child with pigtails. This young lady inspired lustful thoughts of tangled limbs atop pristine sheets. Not well done of him at all, to even have such a thought of the young lady.
"I daresay all brothers believe sisters are nuisances."
"Though there were a few amusing anecdotes that hinted at affection," he hurriedly said, in the event he'd bruised her sensibilities.
Her eyes twinkled as if she knew he fibbed. "I am pleased to meet you, Lord Richard, though the circumstance of our acquaintanceship is rather worrisome. I'm Lady Evelyn Chesterfield. My friends call me Evie."
"Pleased to meet you ... Lady Evelyn. Would you like to rinse?" he asked, offering his champagne glass.
She stepped forward, searching his face. "I ... yes, thank you," she said so politely it pulled a smile to his lips. She clutched the glass and took a large mouthful, before turning away. Seconds later she bent slightly and spat the contents from her mouth. She faced him and held the glass to him.
"You may drink it, if you wish."
"It would be impolite of me to do so."
Richard arched a brow. He would never understand the infernal rules that governed women of society. "I shall not inform a soul."
She blinked, then glanced down at the golden liquid in the glass. Without speaking, she tipped it to her mouth and consumed it all. Then she licked the small droplets from the corner of her lips. The front of his breeches tightened embarrassingly. His passions had never behaved in such an unruly manner before.
What is it about her?
It was her mouth, he finally decided. Her lips, in particular, he found alluring. Interest stirred inside him along with a dash of arousal. Now they stood so close, he realized she was much younger than he'd initially surmised. "How old are you?" "Fifteen."
His heart lurched in acute discomfort, and he stepped away. His cock had gotten hard for a mere girl. Bloody hell, he was a cad. Richard scrubbed a hand over his face.
"Where is your chaperone? Your governess?" he demanded through gritted teeth. It hardly mattered some debutantes on the marriage mart married at fifteen, he found the notion distasteful. "Why are you alone in the gardens?"
"I slipped away," she said, as if it should have been evident.
Her lips flattened and tears welled in her eyes, but she remained stubbornly silent.
"Should I summon the countess?"
She watched him with an air of anxiety. "No, please, my mother would not be forgiving of my disobedience. I should not be mingling with the guests."
With a careful show of nonchalance, he folded his arms and leaned against the side of a fountain. She was Ravenswood's sister, and Richard had not lied about the close connection with her brother. He could not in good conscience leave her in distress. It surprised him to discover he still possessed a damn conscience. "I've been told I am quite a tolerable listener."
Her lids lowered, hiding her gaze from his, and her eyelashes trembled against her cheeks. "I am grateful for the kind offer, but I couldn't impose."
"It's no imposition. I promise whatever we discuss shall remain with me." He made the motion of locking his lips with a key.
Lady Evelyn remained stubbornly silent, and the need to have her confide in him welled inexplicably. "I ..." He cleared his throat. "Whenever I take a bath I sing."
Her eyes widened and then narrowed thoughtfully. "I indulge in such pastimes. That is hardly a secret."
Devil take it. The last thing he wanted now was thoughts of her naked in a bathtub. "I once sang to a dying soldier ... a friend." And cried with the man, too, though he would not tell her that part.
Her lips parted in surprise. "Such an action is commendable. I'm sure it offered some comfort."
"Alas, I was so terrible at it, Frankie couldn't die in any form of peace, so he is quite alive today."
Her lips twitched. "I'm much relieved your friend recovered." She took a deep breath and exhaled before squaring her shoulders and meeting his scrutiny. "My birthday is tomorrow."
It seemed more palatable that he'd felt desire for a girl of sixteen. He thrust his hands into his pockets. "And this distresses you how?" It perplexed him that he was conversing with a girl over her vomit as if it were an ordinary undertaking.
As if she read his mind, she glanced down at the mess still too close to her satin slippers. "Would you like to leave?"
The offer was made with evident reluctance. "I'm fine if you are. I, too, wished for solitude from the crush. The lawns are filled with croquet players and the lake with row boats."
A relieved smile lit her entire face, and Richard froze. Truly exquisite.
He cleared his throat. "However, if you would permit me to conceal the evidence?"
Excerpted from "How To Marry A Marquess"
Copyright © 2017 Stacy Reid.
Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Engrossing! Lively! Original! Didn't want any of each book to end, especially "How to Marry A Marquess". True to form of all her books, Stacy Reid is able to put everything in words so vivid. Left me wishing for a sequel.!
I enjoyed this story even though it was a bit conflicted for my taste. Cant wait for the next story in this great series
Great addition to series. Slow in some spots but worth the read.
This was a great read and one I had been looking forward to reading for awhile. Evie and Richard have been friends forever and secretly attracted to the other but the other didn't know. When Evie learns that Richard is looking for a wife to be mother to his daughter, she is determined to be that person. Of course, Richard doesn't think that Evie will accept his daughter plus she is the sister of a friend which makes her off limits. All of this, of course, brings antics to the story. I really enjoyed Evie and Richard's story and I hope that Reid continues this series as I've throughly enjoyed it.
Lady Evie Chesterfield has been crazy about Lord Richard Maitland, Marquees of Westfall, her brother’s best friend, since she was 16. Over the years, they became close friends. Evie became someone Richard could rely on and go to. When his reputation is destroyed by his final act of defiance on society’s expectation by claiming the illegitimate daughter he didn’t know he had, he pulls his friendship away from Evie. I really loved this book. The characters had me absolutely engrossed in the book. I couldn’t put it down until it was done. I did find myself mad at Richard several times throughout the story for his ignorant treatment of Evie, but forgave him by the end:) I highly recommend. **I voluntarily read and reviewed this book
I enjoyed this book and the characters. I loved Adeline's story more though. Am looking forward to Phoebe's story.
I really enjoyed reading this book but I would like to know what happened to Richard's sister Philbee, her story.
This is just one hell of sexy romance. Most of the time in historical romance it can be very tame until the ONE time the hero and heroine finally make it a bed. Not in this one. The build up is from the very first page and doesn’t stop. Now, I will warn you that the book starts when our heroine, Evie is about 16 and the story unfolds through 6 years. You actually get to see their friendship bloom and see the respect that they have for one another. It’s refreshing in a historical romance that our couple is actually friends first. That said, their friendship is unique. At times, I was giggling because of just Evie. Evie is just one of those heroines that you can’t help but love from the beginning. A bit unconventional but also very dutiful. I loved how in the end she finally said enough is enough. I will marry for love, not just for money. Good thing because Richard was beyond wealthy. And sexy. And ruthless. And smart. And had the biggest heart. I could go on but you will just have to read the book to find out his many attributes. And yes, Richard is the type of historical hero that I like. See above. Plus, I also liked that he just didn’t care what the ton thought about him. Only Evie and his daughter mattered. Oops. Let that one slip. And yes, there are children involved and it changes Evie’s mind about her upbringing. Her parents are a complete trip and very stereotypical of the time and they made me giggle, like a lot. Especially her mother. I swear Ms. Reid wrote her for pure comic relief. Evie’s dad and brother were good secondary characters even if they didn’t have a lot to do. Adel is great, too and I really need to her book now. I was smitten with her, too. Overall, if you are looking for a great historical romance where the characters are real, the situations realistic, the smexy times slow but when they come together you will swoon and did mention Richard just by himself? Oh, my…I’m in love. Thank you, Ms. Reid.
This book lacked cohesion and continuity. The charactors vacillated from chapter to chapter and the author really over-emphasized the social conditions and mores of the era. It was just not a good book. Ms Reid has a good command of grammar and word flow but needs improvement in plotting and character development.
This a great historical romance. KLN
How to Marry a Marquess was a delightful romance with quite a bit of heat. Lady Evie Chesterfield meets Richard Maitland when she is fifteen and he is in his early twenties. He is immediately taken with her. As they age, Evie and Richard remain friends. But the feelings they have for each other continue to grow. Richard learns he has a young daughter that has been taken to an orphanage. He begins his search for her. When he finds her, he rescues her and begins to be resentful of the ton and begins to passionately help those less fortunate. But by doing so, his reputation has suffered. Evie has always lived in luxury. She attends parties where she is the darling of the parties. She is highly sought after. Richard knows that if he follows his heart and marries Evie, she will be ousted from society. He loves her too much to do that. So Evie, in her desperation to get Richard to marry her, decides to get him to teach her the art of seduction so that she might gain favor of a man she loves. Richard reluctantly helps her but completely loses his heart in the process. Both Richard and Evie have to determine if their love for each other is worth the risk. How to Marry a Marquess was interesting. I really liked the characters and the passion they both felt for those who are suffering. Once Evie's eyes where opened to a different lifestyle, she showed courage and compassion. The book is a bit steamy, just a warning.
Fun, passionate read! A delicious friends to lovers romp. Evie wants Richard to have forever, Richard wants Evie but not for marriage. A head strong lady can she bring the Marquess to his knees? A dark man on the edge of decency, can he keep her at arms length? Such an enjoyable read with real life problems and issues brought to light. Evie is a wonderful character with a kind heart and compassionate soul. Richard is a hardened but equally compassionate man- for those he deems deserving. Strong secondary from previous books lead to a fun and winding road to their happily ever after! Regency romance with passion, flirting, inuendos, and some interesting twists.
This was a wonderful friends to lovers story with vivid, engaging characters, a well-written plot that held my interest and richly detailed scenery that easily drew me into the "picture". The chemistry between Evie and Richard was undeniable, and the sexual tension fairly crackled off the pages. This novel fully satisfied my historical hankerings! *I received a complimentary ARC of this book from NetGalley & Entangled Publishing, LLC in order to read and provide a voluntary, unbiased and honest review, should I choose to do so.
A lovely story where the characters grow & develop wonderfully as the story progresses. Evie is a typical ton lady with a society conscious mother who only cares for her daughter to make the most advantageous marriage in terms of position and wealth. On the day of her coming out, a day before her 16th bday, a desolate Evie who had been told that she is to encourage the suit of a Duke more than 3 times her age, meets her older brother’s chum, Richard the Marquess of Westlake and a rather irregular friendship and bond grows the between the two. Richard is quite a rake and scoundrel who is deeply disillusioned with the callousness of the privileged. Coming back from the war, he sees 1st hand the deprivation and suffering of the poor, weak and the men returned disabled and discarded after the war but unlike most of his ilk he actively works to improve their lot. Pushing for reforms at the same time as using his own wealth to establish safe houses and homes for the needy, at the same time providing gainful employment to those willing to work for him. He does not shy from using force threats or violence to achieve his means. Totally indifferent to the opinion of society, he avoids their endless entertainments and lives under a cloud of scandal and censure after discovering he has an illegitimate daughter from a failed courtship; saving her and a passel of children & adopting the whole lot of them. Evie is almost his opposite. The darling of the ton, beautiful, intelligent and perfectly behaved at all times with a spotless reputation – other than the blot in her copybook that is her close friendship with Richard. I didn’t think much of her at 1st, a lady who lives for the endless balls, routes and lavish (meaningless) entertainments. But an unexpected detour one day opens Evie’s eyes & Richard is quite unreserved in explaining what a glass house she lives in. The story develops wonderfully thereafter as Richard struggles not to succumb to his feelings for Evie thinking that she would never be able weather the censure of society for what he believes in. Love a dark, brooding and strong hero which Richard was. The ending is absolutely lovely (tissues required!) ARC provided by the publisher via NetGalley.
when richard maitland, the marquess of westfall first met evie chesterfield he knew that she was not for him. she was too young. too innocent. too good. he'd already been burned by what he thought was love once. and he'd already vowed to never marry and never let his heart get involved again. and sure there were moments where he wondered. where he yearned for more with evie. but those close calls only served to reaffirm his resolve. he wasn't going to give evie a chance for anything real. but what he doesn't count on is the pressure on evie to finally marry. she's a young woman of the ton, her duty is to get married. not only because it is what is expected, but also because it is the only way for her to pay her way. daughters are financial burdens until they marry and become someone else's problem. in how to marry a marquess, evie decides it's finally time to take matter into her own hands. she's never fully understood richard's hesitation. she knows in her heart of hearts that he feels the same love for her as she does for him. he tries to keep her at arm's length, but he's been denying himself for so long it's only a matter of time before she wears him down. and even still he doesn't have it in him to believe that evie is strong enough to stand up to society by his side. and part of his doubt stems from his need to protect her from those who would cut her. but part of it is also his inability to trust anyone but himself. and it's this distrust that almost kills evie. realizing how little he thinks of her breaks her heart. and the thing of it is, she could almost understand how deep his damage is, but he knows her. he is the one person she has shared all of herself with, and if that is not enough then nothing will be. but when the prospect of losing evie forever is forced on richard, he realizes that he's been criminally stupid and unfair. he loves evie. she loves him. they can withstand anything society throws at them. he just has to have enough faith to believe that together they are stronger than they are apart. and while his scars run deep, the deepest cut to his heart would be losing evie for good, and so he must redeem himself. and when he does, it's pretty spectacular. **how to marry a marquess will publish on august 14, 2017. i received an advance reader copy courtesy of netgalley/entangled publishing (scandalous) in exchange for my honest review.
ARC Provided by NetGalley and publisher in exchange for an honest review. Rating 3.5 Lady Evie Gladstone had been friends with Marquess of Westfall, Richard since she was sixteen and he twenty-four. Richard was Evie's brother friend first but the two bonded and had a special connection over the years. As the years passed their feelings had grew and became deeper. Evie came to love Richard and dreamed of being his wife. But Richard had a cynical view of love, he was hurt and betrayed by a woman in his past that he thought he loved and would marry. He was attracted too Evie and cared deeply for her. Richard cherished their friendship but knew that there was a line/boundary that he couldn't cross with her. Plus she was too good, sweet and proper for him. Richard went off to war and Evie became the diamond of the ton. As years pass they correspond and continue their friendship. One day Richard learns he has a daughter from the woman who betray him. He does something that is so outrageous and against what the ton would ever accept, he acknowledges his daughter and brings her to his home to raise her. What transpires is Richard fighting his attraction to Evie and believing she would never accept his daughter. Even though Richard cares for her he believes/thinks Evie is somewhat of a snob and the approval and acceptance of the ton is most important to her. Evie in the mean time struggles to understand what she believes/stands up for opposed to the tons and her family. She learns that Richard might marry for his daughter sake, so she can have a Mother figure in her life. Evie is hurt, angry and determined to be that wife to Richard and mother to his daughter. She devises a plan, she asks Richard to teach her how to seduce and entice someone she cares for. Richard struggles with the notion of Evie with someone else but yet can't resist her or the temptation of her. The story takes off from there with the ebb and flow of their acceptance for each other, communication and development of a deeper relationship. There was misunderstandings, hurt but yet enlightenment of their true feelings and growth of their character. I found this not to be a true Regency fiction, with the customs and restrictions of the era/time. More a modern version of a "Historical" (if there is such a thing ). Not too much Historical accuracy. But I did find it entertaining and engaging read. The characters grew in depth and the plot was engrossing. The time span of when they were not together at times seemed lengthy, but not so much that it took away from the story.
How to Marry a Marquess is a hot, sexy read with loads of emo and some unusual twists. Evie does just as she wants, and as she’s pretty, she’s popular with society, even when she turns down every suitor. Richard is a man who sees beyond his wealth and title, giving it all up in order to help out his illegitimate daughter and her friends. When Evie decides she wants Richard, there will clearly be a stormer of a courtship. I enjoyed it but it’s not Regency fiction where the characters and the plot are restricted by the mores of the day; it’s a modern romance set in costume. I find that kind of read a bit more difficult as I prefer historical accuracy. But it was good fun escapism and given that so many people liked Mr Darcy jumping into the lake, How to Marry a Marquess is bound to hit the spot. I received a copy from the Publisher via NetGalley and am reviewing voluntarily.
. Lord Richard George Maitland the marquess, found out one of his lovers had a child and she did not tell him. Because of his disregard of society's rules he was shunned. Lady Evelyn Gladstone had loved him since one day before she turned sixteen. There is intrigue, a little danger and one feisty marquess. I thought the story was truly marvelous, there were a lot of problems and most were of his making, at least the emotional ones. The characters were wonderful and so realistic. Friends were true friends and the children played and were just kids. The Duke of Wolverton was his best friend and only wanted the best for him. I don't want to say to much and ruin a great story. But the author should be commended for her caring and excellent writing skill, which pulls you in and keep your attention until the very end. I am anxious to read Phoebe's story..
Evie, 16, and Richard, 24, meet as she’s throwing up in the garden during a house party. He boldly advises her how to withstand the unwanted pursuit of gentlemen her mother pushes her way. It is really quite inventive and I assure you you’ve not read this before in a romance. At least I haven’t. They immediately become friends and remain so for the next six years. During this time Richard’s life is turned upside down. He is soon traveling down a path he never anticipated and yet feels strongly about. When society scorns his decisions, Evie remains steadfast as his friend. This book has a lot of inroads that take you in different directions adding depth to the story as well as the characters. It is a rich, full story that deals with issues that were not only prevalent at the time but still has a message for society today. There is a scene that was actually extremely difficult to read because this author shades it with truth and grit. I hesitate to share much more of the plot due to its intricacies. However, I will say that it is well written, fast paced while giving plenty of details as to the internal conflicts both the hero and heroine are dealing with, intriguing, humorous, and steamy. Richard is a strong protective hero that is struggling with his past as well as his future while Evie is a bit naïve about what life outside her insulated bubble really entails. The evolution of both of their characters was at times angst filled but beautiful. I truly enjoyed this book and the lack of one star on my rating is due to the fact that I’m particular about my heroes being only with the heroine once they meet. I understand that is unrealistic, especially considering their age at the time they meet, but I live for the fantasy. Either way, I still cannot recommend this book enough to anyone who enjoys historical romances or anyone who is interested in trying one out. Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review Dual POV Safety issues – the hero is with other women after meeting the heroine but is celibate the year before they finally come together as a couple No apparent triggers
'How to Marry A Marquess' by Stacy Reid is Book Three in The "Wedded by Scandal" series. This is the story of Evie Chesterfield and Richard Maitland. I have read (and Loved!) the other books in this series but feel this is easily a standalone book. Evie first met Richard when she was almost 16 years of age. Richard is her brother's friend but she had never met him until she sneaked out one night upset about her parents trying to marry her off to an older Duke. Richard happened upon her when she had been physically sick with upset about her parents plan. Richard and Evie hit is off after he told her how to turn the Duke's attention away from her. They both agreed they would be friends...which they did. Richard once thought himself in love and wanted to marry the lady but they lady in question had her heart set on a title. Richard at the time was a Second Son and had no such Title. Richard was heart broken and vowed to never marry. Richard does not trust or think that Love is true. Richard really likes Evie but she is the darling of the Town and of late even with a Title that he inherited he knows being something more that his frined would ruin her. In addition, he doesn't want to loose their friendship...but it hard to keep is desire for her to himself. I so love the friendship between Richard and Evie an how it slowly build into more. Richard for all his talk of not wanting to love he had a big heart for the less fortunate. This is a book you will not be able to put down!! Loved it! Wedded by Scandal:, Book 1: Accidentally Compromising the Duke, Book 2: Wicked in His Arms, Book 3: How to Marry a Marquess, "My honest review is for a special copy I voluntarily read."