William Barlow’s life has been forever altered: his estranged father is dead, and William has inherited the title of Viscount Farleigh. Along with the title comes a neglected estate, an enormous amount of gambling debt, and one astounding acquisition that will turn William’s world upside down . . . It is her first London Season, and Lady Louisa Hargreaves could not be more pleased. She has attracted the attention of the Earl of Kerridge, and the two are on the cusp of an official betrothal. That is, until she learns of a generations-old family debt: her grandfather gambled her hand in marriage and lost, and now Louisa must pay the price. She will marry not the earl but a man she just met, who has taken her freedom in one fell swoop. Even as she struggles to understand the handsome and aloof man she is to wed, Louisa is irresistibly drawn to him—and he to her. But she soon realizes he is harboring secrets, and as her wedding day approaches, she must discover what her future husband is hiding before she makes the gravest mistake of her life.
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The Honorable William Barlow, age 24, became the fourth Viscount Farleigh when his father recently passed away. Now, he is traveling to Farleigh Manor to face what he knows will be huge debts left by his father. Lady Louisa Hargreaves, daughter of the Marquess of Ashworth, is preparing to attend the first ball of her first season. Judging by the number of floral arrangements delivered the next day, Louisa was a great success at the ball. She is surprised when one suitor, the Earl of Kerridge, and heir to a dukedom, proposes to her and she accepts. Before the betrothal can be announced, Viscount Farleigh and his solicitor arrive to inform Louisa’s family that he has a vowel saying that the daughter of the Marquess of Ashworth must wed Viscount Farleigh. The vowel had originated between their grandfathers. William fully expects to the thrown out, but realizes that Louisa and her family believe in honor and, thus, respecting the vowel. William wishes he didn’t have to resort to this, but his home and the people who depend on him need him to press forward with this. Louisa has a very large dowry that can help greatly with the debts run up by his father. Louisa agrees to marry him in three weeks time. Slowly they get to know one another and they both realize they are attracted to one another. However, Louisa wishes she didn’t have to do this. But when William with a young woman and two children, people and Louisa wonder what he could be hiding. This is a clean and wholesome novel which I enjoyed. With two older brothers, Louisa has been allowed to be a bit of a chatterbox and is very special to her brothers and parents. William’s childhood was sad as his father was distant and broke his mother’s heart leading to her early demise. William is an honorable man and wants to see his home and employees do well. I think readers will enjoy this story and the ups and downs that both the hero and heroine face. Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.