Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor

Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor

by Anna Bradley

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Overview

Two sought-after sisters, a slew of suitors—and a vow to hold out for true love. How many proposals will it take to get to “I do”—especially when the stakes are high . . .
 
There have been six suitors so far, all vying for the attention—and generous dowry—of the beautiful, elusive Eleanor Sutherland. What does this woman really want? Who has what it takes to melt the heart of the so-called Lady Ice? These are the questions Camden West keeps asking himself. But rather than wait for answers, Cam takes matters into his own hands . . . for he has a secret weapon.
 
Cam knows that Ellie’s sister, Charlotte, harbors a scandalous secret—one that could bring ruin to the Sutherland name. If Ellie marries him, Cam promises to keep mum. But is she willing to sacrifice her own happiness for her sister’s reputation?
 
To Ellie’s surprise, it becomes clear that Cam doesn’t need her money, nor is he interested in her status. Soon, what begins as a sham engagement transforms into something deeper, and more passionate, than Ellie could have imagined. Is it possible that all Cam truly wanted was her? And is that reason enough to say yes—or is handsome Cam hiding something else? Even for a lady in love, only the truth will do . . .

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781516105168
Publisher: Kensington
Publication date: 09/05/2017
Series: Sutherland Sisters Series , #1
Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 3,529
File size: 806 KB

About the Author

Anna Bradley is the author of The Sutherland Scandals novels. A Maine native, she now lives near Portland, OR, where people are delightful and weird and love to read. She teaches writing and lives with her husband, two children, a variety of spoiled pets, and shelves full of books. Visit her website at www.annabradley.net.

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

London, 1815

Lady Eleanor Sutherland clutched her fan and studied the young lord before her, a polite smile frozen on her face, her heart sinking into her slippers.

Lord Tidmarsh had placed a wager on her in the betting book at White's.

Ellie didn't want to believe it of him, but she'd seen this performance — the shifty eyes and twitchy fingers, the sheen of nervous sweat on his upper lip, the hint of a smirk on his lower one — too many times to deny the truth. Yes, his lordship was definitely in the throes of a violent, and feigned, passion.

She knew a sham suitor when she saw one. Lord Tidmarsh was her third this season.

Several weeks ago she'd rejected her fifth marriage offer — one offer too many, she now realized, for the gentlemen of the ton to overlook. Since then it had become quite the fashionable game for them to attempt to pry some sign of affection from her. They teased for dances, begged for smiles. A few of the bolder ones had even written sonnets to her sparkling dark eyes.

My heart flies, my soul cries, and so forth.

It was enough to make one shudder for the fate of the rhyming couplet. Alas, whoever had said a single sonnet could drive love entirely away had the right of it. It wasn't a romantic sentiment, perhaps, but true for all that.

The same could be said of wagers.

Ellie had her own page in the betting book at White's. A smile from her would earn her swain a sovereign, a walk on the terrace was worth five guineas, and as for the higher denominations ... well, perhaps the less said about that the better, though she did wonder what value they'd placed on her virtue.

As for her love ...

It must be worthless indeed, for not one of the gentlemen seemed at all interested in securing it.

"Won't you favor me with a smile, my lady?" Lord Tidmarsh dragged a gloved hand across his damp forehead. "You know I exist only for your smiles."

Poor Lord Tidmarsh might be able to produce a bit of perspiration, but she couldn't see any other signs of impending manhood. Not a single whisker shaded his smooth upper lip. She'd have settled for the merest hint of fuzz, even — anything to indicate a hair had tried to hatch there.

"Will you consent to one more dance this evening? Please, Lady Eleanor."

She sighed. It had come to this, then. She'd be compelled to rebuff a mere lad this time. The ton already called her Lady Frost behind her back, and once she sent young Lord Tidmarsh on his way, she was sure to be saddled with a far worse nickname.

Icy Ellie, perhaps, or the Artic Queen?

But the sooner she put an end to this scene, the better. "I beg you'll excuse me, my lord. I've already danced twice with you this evening. If we dance together again, the ton will gossip, and —"

"Would that be so terrible?" He arranged his lips into a perfect schoolboy pout.

She pasted a smile onto her face. "Now, Lord Tidmarsh, you know very well a third dance will encourage Lady Foster's guests to assume we have an understanding. We wouldn't want that, would we?"

"But we could have an understanding, even now. It's the very thing I want." He pressed her fingers against his bony chest, his face twisted with a passable imitation of passionate despair.

Eleanor tried to withdraw her hand, but he hung on with such determination her arm began to slip out of her glove. Well, how absurd. She would have her hand back, even if it meant he ended with her limp glove clutched to his chest.

"I'll run mad if you refuse me, Lady Eleanor. Indeed I will!"

Eleanor's cheeks heated with embarrassment. Must all of her pretend suitors fall into wild hysterics? Next he'd fall to his knees, beat his chest, and tear his hair out from the roots.

Another tragic hero, right here in the middle of the Foster's ballroom.

She supposed it was more amusing if he fell into fits. Whichever lord had sent him to torment her would want to see the thing done with a dramatic flourish. No doubt Lord Ponsonby, Mr. Fitzwilliam, or another of her rejected suitors was watching the entire performance from a shadowy corner of the ballroom.

Eleanor straightened her spine. Well, there was no help for it. Lady Frost would have to make an appearance. A pang of guilt pierced her chest for Lord Tidmarsh's tender young heart, but if he had any true affection for her, it was a flimsy thing, at best.

She fixed him with a steady gaze, and after a moment his blue eyes darted guiltily away. Ah. Just as she'd thought. A dare, or a wager. "I must insist you release me."

He clutched at her fingers. "But Lady Eleanor, I swear —"

"At once, my lord."

He studied her for a moment, no doubt hunting for some tenderness in her eyes, some hint of breathlessness, some softening of her lips.

Eleanor gazed back at him, her face expressionless.

He dropped her hand and stepped back. "Very well. I wish you a pleasant evening, madam."

It was far more likely he wished her to the devil, just like the rest of them, but it wouldn't do to say so. "How kind you are, my lord."

He folded his lanky frame into a stiff bow, turned on his heel, and disappeared into the crowd. Eleanor watched him go, her chin raised as she fought the urge to let her shoulders slump in defeat.

Just as she'd suspected. Flimsy.

*
Camden West stood off to the side of the ballroom, half-obscured behind a white marble pillar. Lady Foster had a fondness for pillars, it seemed — pillars, and wide gilt mirrors. Every turn brought him face to face with his own reflection: severe black evening dress, stark white cravat, tight mouth. Damn unsettling, but like the rest of the ton, Lady Foster must want to see an endless echo of herself in every shiny surface.

But the pillars suited Cam. He preferred to remain unobserved tonight, which was difficult to do when one was the tallest gentleman in the room. Of course, his height did offer certain advantages. If he were a few inches shorter, he'd have spent all evening craning his neck to see around the crowds of gentlemen swarming Lady Eleanor Sutherland, like bees buzzing around their queen. As it was, he had a perfect view of the little drama unfolding about twelves paces to his left. The adolescent lord who'd cornered her didn't look to be an especially sharp specimen, but he was sharp enough to have found a way to separate Lady Eleanor from the rest of the swarm.

That young lordling — what the devil was his name again? Cam had been introduced to him. He had a vague memory of watery blue eyes, but he couldn't remember the boy's name. No matter. The lad's time would be better spent attempting to grow some chest hair rather than buzzing around a bee of Lady Eleanor's majesty.

Her sting was legendary.

Cam couldn't hear a word they said, but he didn't need to, for this was a pantomime worthy of the Parisian stage.

The besotted swain grasped the lady's hand and pressed it dramatically to his breast.

The lady remained unmoved.

The swain pleaded, cajoled, looked tragic, and finally, in desperation, hurled his throbbing heart at the feet of his cruel mistress. The lady, her face composed, dark eyes unblinking, brought one dainty foot down and crushed that tender organ under her heel, then kicked it back in his general direction with a careless flick of her satin-covered toe.

Cam suppressed an urge to laugh. Or applaud. He'd gladly pay a crown to see that performance again.

What did that make, then? Three seasons, five offers, five refusals, and now this poor devil, who hadn't even made it as far as Lady Eleanor's brother. Impressive, how she'd dispensed with him before he had a chance to come to the point. Lord Carlisle was said to be fond of his sisters, and he must be. Fond enough to permit Lady Eleanor to reject suitor after suitor.

Reason enough to bypass the earl altogether.

How fortunate for Cam that Lady Eleanor thought herself too good for every gentleman in London, and how lucky none of these fine lords had the remotest inkling how to handle a woman like her.

Cam didn't have that problem. Handled she would be, and soon.

Poor lord whatever-the-devil-his-name-was slunk off into the crowded ballroom. He looked like a puppy who'd taken an unexpected and vicious kick to the ribs. Lady Eleanor looked as if she found the whole thing tedious, as if she made it a habit to kick a puppy every day.

Lady Frost. Cam smiled. Oh, yes. She was every inch the proper aristocratic lady.

She'd do. She'd do quite nicely.

Lady Eleanor flapped her fan in front of her face, no doubt to cool the flush of irritation from her cheeks. Cam's lips twisted in a cynical smile. It must exhaust the poor lady to be the object of such constant adoration. Did she encourage them, and then refuse them? He thought it likely. What were the chances five suitors could have been so mistaken about her affections?

He waited, watching her from behind his pillar. She wouldn't take much time to fume. No more than a few minutes, and then she'd remember.

Her hand dropped to her side and she looked around, and a slight frown creased that smooth, white brow. She grasped a fold of her silk gown, rose to her tiptoes, and moved her gaze over the crowd, searching.

Ah. There. Cam knew it the moment she spotted her sister in the sea of whirling couples. He followed her gaze to the other side of the ballroom, though he knew what he'd find before he saw them.

Lady Charlotte Sutherland, the younger of the two Sutherland sisters, rumored to be a bit on the wild side. Indeed, from what Cam had heard, Lady Charlotte had driven the ton right out of countenance this season. If she placed another toe over the line of propriety, she'd suffer dire social consequences.

Charlotte Sutherland was dancing with Cam's cousin, Julian West. Handsome, charming, irresistible Julian. Damn shame he was such a rake. With every turn of the dance Julian drew closer to the open French doors leading onto the terrace and the dark garden beyond, his quarry caught in his arms.

Such a scenario was a bit worrying for the young lady. Someone could get hurt. Or ruined.

Lady Eleanor must have thought so too, for she hurried past Cam in a cloud of wine-colored skirts and a faint scent of black currants, her gaze fixed on the opposite side of the ballroom.

Cam slid out from behind his pillar and started after her.

What a pity she wouldn't reach her sister in time.

*
"You are presumptuousness itself, sir."

Julian gazed down into a pair mischievous dark eyes and couldn't resist the smile that curved his lips. Lady Charlotte might speak in a scolding tone, but her eyes gave her away, for nothing but invitation shone in those wicked depths.

Good Lord. Her eyes were sin itself. How had she managed to escape ruination for this long, with eyes like that?

Julian pressed his palm against her waist and maneuvered her a few steps closer to the terrace doors. "Presumptuous? I don't know what you mean. You look flushed, Lady Charlotte. Too much dancing, perhaps? A breath of fresh air will restore you."

A tiny smiled played about her lips. "Oh, indeed. How solicitous of you, Mr. West. I do beg your pardon, for I was sure you thought only of your own needs when you began to move me toward the doors."

Julian's smile widened. Clever. No doubt that was how she'd avoided seduction so far — that cleverness. Not one gentleman in ten would expect it of her, for they'd be too taken with her eyes and mouth to notice her tongue, except for the most carnal of purposes.

He didn't flatter himself he was the one in ten who would notice, but then this wasn't one of his usual seductions. Under normal circumstances he'd have his mouth over hers by now, but Lady Charlotte wasn't a courtesan, and she wasn't his mistress. She was an innocent, and Julian drew the line at debauching dewy-eyed maidens. He'd give her a chaste kiss or two, and keep her out of the ballroom long enough for her absence to be noticed, but this was hardly a scandalous seduction.

He eased her through the doors and out onto the terrace. "I promise you, my lady, I have no needs beyond assuring myself of your comfort."

She slid her arm away from his, strolled to the edge of the terrace, and leaned back against the low stone wall separating it from the garden beyond. "No proper young lady could be comfortable near a dark garden with a man of your reputation, sir. I hope you don't mean to imply I'm not a proper young lady?"

Julian's lips curved into a grin. How delightful to find a wit to match that wicked red mouth of hers. He followed her across the terrace, stopping only when he was so close the deep violet silk of her skirts brushed against his black breeches.

He bent his head toward her so the other couples on the terrace couldn't overhear them. "I meant to imply no such thing, and yet I do wonder whether a proper young lady should be as accomplished a flirt as you appear to be."

She didn't draw away from him, but instead gave him a teasing half-smile. "Perhaps not, and yet my skills at flirtation are wasted on you, for you need no encouragement whatever from me. I might flirt with you or not, and you'll still attempt to lure me into the garden either way, won't you?"

Julian stared at her. Jesus, but she was tempting — so much so he began to imagine they stood on the edge of the Garden of Eden. He'd expected a dimwitted debutante, not Eve herself. Cam should have warned him.

"I begin to think it's you who lure me, Lady Charlotte."

He'd expected to be the serpent in this scenario, but it seemed more than one ardent gentleman had tried to lure the delectable Lady Charlotte into a dark garden. He wasn't the first serpent she'd encountered, or the most cunning. She knew what he was about. She was merely toying with him now, and delighting in doing so.

A gentle breeze wafted over them, lifting the loose locks of hair away from her neck. The cool draught blew under Julian's coat, but it did nothing to cool the heat of his skin.

She gave a low, throaty laugh. "I, lure you? Yes, I suppose it would be more convenient for you to believe so. No need for an attack of conscience, in that case."

"Ah, my lady." Julian caught a lock of her dark hair between his fingers. "What makes you think I have a conscience?"

That surprised a genuine laugh out of her. "No conscience, Mr. West? My, such refreshing honesty. I confess I've never heard the like of it before, not from any gentleman, but especially not from one intent on a solitary stroll in a dark garden with an innocent young lady. I believe you do have a conscience, after all."

Julian felt the first frisson of regret shoot down his spine, but he ignored it. She was lovely and intriguing, but it was too late to change his mind. Cam would be halfway across the ballroom by now.

"I have no fear of my conscience, Lady Charlotte, for I've done nothing I need reproach myself for."

His tone, his casual smile, the self-deprecating lift of one shoulder — all perfect. He waited, his breath held.

Her thick, dark eyelashes brushed against her cheekbones as she let her eyes fall shut. When she opened them again, she looked straight at him. "No. You've no need to reproach yourself. Yet."

*
Charlotte waited for her words to sink in, for understanding to cross his smooth, handsome face, for his lips to part in anticipation. Then she brushed past him, stepped off the edge of the terrace, and strolled into the dark garden beyond.

She didn't look back to see if he followed her. He would. They always did.

Such pretty lips he had — full, with just the slightest hint of a pout, almost like a woman's, though there wasn't anything else the least bit feminine about him. It wasn't his lips that decided her, though. She did want to taste them, but his honesty was more seductive even than his handsome face. So sudden and unexpected. More than one gentleman had tried to tempt her into an indiscretion, but she couldn't recall any who'd admitted to it before. How refreshing, not to be treated as if she were a complete fool.

Of course, the pretty lips didn't hurt.

A few kisses, nothing more, then she'd send him on his way and return to the ballroom before the next dance began. Eleanor wouldn't have to know. She wouldn't be gone long enough to be missed.

Charlotte skirted around the edge of a tree at the far end of the garden. The light from the terrace didn't reach this far, and the low-lying branches would shield them from any curious eyes that might chance to glance their way.

(Continues…)



Excerpted from "Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor"
by .
Copyright © 2017 Anna Bradley.
Excerpted by permission of KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP..
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.

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Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
gaele More than 1 year ago
The first I’ve read from Anna Bradley, with an enemies to lovers plotline, a slew of drama and deception and a difficult to engage with hero are the most notable features. Eleanor has turned away multiple suitors for her hand, determined to hold out for true love and someone who wants her, not just her fortune. While I could completely understand her wishes, her constrained manner has led to her being thought cold and removed: a ploy that didn’t make her accessible or even particularly engaging at first. At home with her sisters, she is an entirely different animal: smart, funny and warm – and you can see her affection for her sisters and family is strong. But, when she devises a plan to appear as if nothing more than candyfloss exists between her ears when faced with a choice, she completely lost me. Then we have Cam – offering for Eleanor’s hand in a bid to exact revenge on her father – by blackmailing Eleanor with a scandal that involved her sister. He was angry, vengeful, duplicitous and unfeeling from the start. So much so that his fate with me was solidified in the early pages and all I wanted was to have someone (preferably another of the sisters) throat-punch him. But, I digress – sometimes there are authors who introduce specifically distasteful characters to give them a moment of redemption – so I hoped. Of course, Eleanor knows there is more to the story that she hasn’t been told, and she does find him attractive and intriguing – but she decides she must have honesty between them. Funny how she missed the plot entirely and corrected her own behavior to show him exactly who she was until it was so late the entire story seemed to be who’s secrets would bring this engagement to a halt and would it happen before or after Cam gained his revenge. So, overall – the story ddn’t work for me: redemption and a sense that a real accord was developing between Cam and Eleanor came far too late for me to forgive either their missteps and deceptions. Although Bradely did write a story that kept me reading and hoping to see and find some true connection to these two as a couple, I never did find it and found the ending a bit too pat and formulaic, leaving me unsatisfied and uninterested in this couple. I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
Lashea677 More than 1 year ago
Two sisters joined in blood, united by scandal. Anna Bradley knows how to tantalize, that's for sure. Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor is a romance born of scandal, but forged out of love. Eleanor is thrust into a situation that forces her to chose between self - preservation and family loyalty. Her choices are limited but her heart is pure. Camden is more a mystery. The motives that drive his devious plan are more far reaching than just him marrying. They involve secrets that encompass the Sutherland and West families and could ruin not only reputations, but lead to heartbreak for all involved. Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor is regency at it's finest. Full of surprises and breathtakingly wonderful.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
%0Ajust+what+I+needed+tonight.+++
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Nagirref More than 1 year ago
Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor by Anna Bradley was a pleasant surprise. It takes me awhile to decide whether or not to read a new author - and to me Anna Bradley was new. I'm glad I made the decision to take that chance. The book is well written with just the right amount of sparkle. Eleanor is thought to be cold by society since she's rejected a number of suitors. However, she's holding out for a marriage made with love. In comes our hero, Camden, who dislikes Eleanor's family immensely and must somehow overcome his rage to find true love. This books has a few twists and turns - but it gets there!
Historical_Romance_Lover More than 1 year ago
LOVED this story!! Cam is determined to marry Ellie for his own reasons and nothing is going to stop him. He even goes so far as to blackmail her into an engagement. Charlotte however is determined to marry for love. She gives into Cam's blackmail only long enough to figure out a way to get out of it. I loved watching Cam and Ellie together. It soon became apparent that Cam was attracted to Ellie and that his reason for marrying her had drastically changed, but did his realization come too late? Definitely a must read!!!
ArecRain More than 1 year ago
On one hand, I love a good historical romance. On the other, even the best stories can be ruined by a single character. Overall, I genuinely enjoyed the story. I related to Eleanor and her relationship with her sister and the chemistry between Eleanor and Cam was real. Their game of cat and mouse was a pleasure to read and Eleanor is one of the best heroines I have read in a historical romance for some time. That being said, Cam ruined it for me. Multiple times, I found myself asking “are men really this simple and single-minded?” I couldn’t get behind his motivation to blackmail Eleanor, and, honestly, couldn’t understand how it was a punishment even after the author explained it. In a world where arranged marriage were the norm and love matched were either rare or only for the lower classes, it didn’t seem like the best way to go about his plan. He could be downright aggravating. Men, am I right? Lady Eleanor’s Seventh Suitor is genuinely a good historical romance if you are looking for one. The characters have depth and are motivated, regardless of how far removed I am from those motivation. Not only the H/h but the side characters as well. At the end, after getting what I wanted from Eleanor and Cam’s story, found myself hungry for Charlotte and Julian’s. Both were equally lovable characters and hope their story is as enjoyable as the first entry in this promising series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved rhe book. You will, too.
BookReview4you More than 1 year ago
'Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor' by Anna Bradley is the First Book in the New Series called "The Sutherland Sisters". This is the story of Eleanor 'Ellie' Sutherland and Camden 'Cam' West. Ellie and her sister didn't have a great home life with a mean father who has since past. Her parents marriage showed her that the only marriage for her is a 'Love Match' that marring for anything else would end like her parents. Since Ellie is holding out for Love which has made her very selective of men. The previous suitors and the town has called her allot of Frosty and Ice nicknames. Cam has set his sites on marrying Ellie and has been monitoring her and seeing the fail attempts at her hand. When Ellie's younger sister Charlotte and Cam's cousin Julian are caught by them in a compromising position. Cam helps them leave but later comes to Ellie with a blackmail offer she has a few days to decide what she is going to do. This time they both start learning more about each other and finding that what they thought they knew about the other...isn't the case. "My honest review is for a special copy I voluntarily read."
candy-b More than 1 year ago
Lady Eleanor Sutherland was referred to as Lady Frost by the ton. She had 5 suitors but she turned them all down. Camden West had been in India for 10 years and had just returned. He decided to blackmail, Lady Eleanor. A more complicated and surprising story can not be had. It all gets so complicated. The author has written an amazing story about two families and the naughty things they do. There are a lot of twists, people have their hearts broken and make bad decisions. But the author takes it all and makes it into an even paced and easily read tale. The characters are well rounded and so realistic. I loved this book especially when the two sisters went out to the terrace and finally talked to each. Lady Eleanor comes to interesting conclusions. It is a racy story but still an excellent read. I received this Arc and voluntarily reviewed it.
TamWindsor_69 More than 1 year ago
Seventh time's the charm? This was a captivating tale featuring a cast of characters that are all flawed and broken, each in their own way. Each merely wants to feel a sense of love, security and acceptance. For Ellie and Cam, scars runs deep and trust is hard to surrender up. Their complex and layered personalities made them seem like so much more than characters in a book. They tug at your heart strings and sweep you along in the tide of their tumultuous and ever-burgeoning emotions. I found that, once I started this book, I was quite unable to put it down. The plot was captivating and the vivid descriptions had me envisioning the scenes as if I was an actual onlooker. This book was very well-written, and the colorful cover was absolutely stunning! *I received a complimentary ARC of this story from NetGalley & Kensington Books in order to read and provide a voluntary, unbiased and honest review, should I choose to do so.
def618 More than 1 year ago
Eleanor Sutherland, known as “Lady Frost”, is in the betting book at White’s as to who will finally convince her to marry after 6 suitors have been rejected. Considering her father, it is not a surprise she doesn’t trust men. Camden West is determined to marry her and has convinced his cousin, Julian, to help him. During a ball, Julian is to take her sister, Charlotte, into the garden where Cam and Eleanor will discover them. However, when Cam and Ellie find them they have gotten a little carried away. Cam tells Ellie she will marry him or he’ll tell the world about Charlotte. Agreeing to the engagement, Ellie plans to discover why he wants to marry her. Cam has a much younger sister, Amelia, and she may be a part of his plans. There is so much more going on in this book that I will not spoil. We see her brothers and their wives, along with Cam’s aunt and uncle. I love this book as much as I did Anna Bradley’s earlier books which feature Ellie’s brothers and I highly recommend it. Favorite lines: “because one was either the villain or the hero. Never both at once. Except it wasn’t that simple” and “No one cares about the start of the play, Cam. They only care about the wedding at the end.”
CathyGeha More than 1 year ago
Lady Eleanor’s Seventh Suitor by Anna Bradley The Sutherland Sisters #1 First book in a series and first book I have read by this author – it won’t be the last. In fact, I am eager to read Charlotte’s story when it is out. Eleanor’s father was not a nice man and treated her family abysmally. Siblings, mother and self were only relieved when he finally died. She, as a result of seeing her mother’s unhappiness, has determined she will only marry for love and so far her brother has assisted her in this endeavor by turning wannabe husbands away. Well, along comes someone intent on having her for his wife and that person is wealthy self-made man Camden West. His reasons for her coercing her into marriage, he believes, are just. His cousin Julian disagrees. His much younger sister, Amelia, has not a clue. Eleanor is NOT inclined to be forced to marry someone she doesn’t love but she does love her sister so sets out to thwart Camden in his plans. A battle of wits ensues as Eleanor and Camden spend time together…secrets are eventually revealed and a HEA achieved…though it is a rocky path for a while and especially rocky for Eleanor’s sister, Charlotte, and Cam’s cousin, Julian. This was a deeper book than many historical romances. The characters were complex as was the plot. The growth of the characters was enjoyable to observe as were the interactions between main and supporting characters. I was left feeling that sometimes getting what one wants or thinks one wants is not all that one might want it to be. I do believe Eleanor and Camden will be happy together and want to hear more about them in Charlotte’s story. Thank you to NetGalley and Kensington-Lyrical Press for the ARC – This is my honest review. 4.5 Stars
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I would read it :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
London -1815 Lady Eleanor (Ellie) Sutherland is known as Lady Ice. Having had six suitors so far, Camden (Cam) West hopes he will be the lucky seventh suitor to win her hand. Now age 21, Ellie is in her third season and has recently rejected Lord Tidmarch’s proposal as he is just too timid for her. Cam West is observing her rejection of the young Lord as he watches Ellie heading into the garden looking for her sister, Lady Charlotte Sutherland. She had been dancing with Julien West, Cam’s cousin and a rake, who would like nothing more than to get Charlotte outside on the terrace to steal and kiss….and he succeeds in stealing that kiss and more. When Ellis finds Charlotte in the arms of Julien and half dressed, Cam offers to call their carriage to take them home. The next day, Cam visits Ellie asking to marry her or he will tell the ton about the previous night and her sister will the ruined. Cam has given her two weeks to accept his suit and proposal. But to show the man that she does not take orders easily, she makes their times together quite vexing. Enter Amelia, Cam’s younger sister and for whom he cares deeply. As Ellie sees the two of them interact, she begins to believe that Cam may have a heart after all. But there is truly more than meets the eye behind his wish to make her his wife. I had a difficult time with the characters in this book. To me, Eleanor had no feelings and Camden was a bully and the “hold” he had over her was weak. Lady Charlotte is a sweet character and I cannot wait to read her story. Amelia is an adorable character and I hope that the author will write a book about her. Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.