Lady Eve's Indiscretion
by Grace Burrowes
- Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
- Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca (February 5, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1402263805
- ISBN-13: 978-1402263804
My Rating: 4.5 of 5.0
Release date: February 5, 2013
"Burrowes delivers red-hot chemistry with a masterful mix of playfulness and sensuality."—Publishers Weekly Starred Review
Lady Eve's Got The Perfect Plan
Pretty, petite Evie Windham has been more indiscreet than her parents, the Duke and Duchess of Moreland, suspect. Fearing that a wedding night would reveal her past, she's running out of excuses to dodge adoring swains. Lucas Denning, the newly titled Marquis of Deene, has reason of his own for avoiding marriage. So Evie and Deene strike a deal, each agreeing to be the other's decoy. At this rate, matrimony could be avoided indefinitely...until the two are caught in a steamy kiss that no one was supposed to see.
Lady Eve loved horses and the stable as a young girl. She soaked up knowledge about horses and developed a touch for them. Her family recognized her special gift with the horses but they realize that a scoundrel stablehand was romancing her. The demeaning experience at age sixteen left her feeling ruined. To make matters worse she suffered a terrible tumble from her horse as she escaped the rogue. The doctors said she wouldn’t walk again but Eve proved them wrong. However, she hasn’t touched a horse since and she is determined that she can never marry because of the secret she has never revealed.
Eve’s parents have set their sights to find good mates for Eve and her younger sister. Eve has always had attentive suitors but has managed to dodge them. Now she may have to select an appropriate, suitable, but disinterested mate.
Lucas, the new Marquis of Deene, is the last of his line except for an older cousin who has served as the family steward for years. Neither of them is particularly interested in siring heirs but the duty must be done. Lucas is resigned to marrying but his real interest is on thwarting his low brow, Irish brother-in-law, Dolan, and getting custody of his niece. Lucas believes that his sister was forced into an unwanted marriage and that Dolan is responsible for her death.
Lucas has always been friends with Eve’s brothers and is inclined to keep an eye out for her welfare. He steps in to deflect a few arduous suitors and offers a deal to Eve. He’ll help her find an appropriate mate and she can fill him in on the suitability of the marriageable ladies. They begin to spend time together, both trying to forget, but actually wondering, about the delicious kiss they once shared under the mistletoe.
Surprisingly Lucas abruptly gets Evie to take the reins of his curricle. Then he lures her to his stable to meet his prize stallion. Eve helps to deliver a foal and Lucas’ admiration for the petite, strong woman grows. Eve initially refuses Lucas’ kind proposal of marriage. She wants a ‘white’ marriage with no intimacy and he needs an heir.
An unexpected visit catches them in a compromising situation and forces marriage on them. Once they are together Eve’s feelings begin to grow but she fears that Lucas will reject her if he discovers her secrets. Meanwhile Lucas is keeping secrets of his own and the discovery will cause trouble for their budding marriage.
I enjoyed the reluctant romance of these two characters. It is hard to fully appreciate Eve’s trauma but it makes sense from her societal view. Lucas is an absolute gem in his handling of Eve. Their biggest obstacle is failing to be truthful as they enter into the marriage. There is a bit of intrigue and wonderful horse racing to flush out the plot. I loved the wealth of horse knowledge shared through the story. Ms. Burrowes’ writing is as lively, warm and delightful as always. If you love horses and are a fan of historical romance I encourage you to read this story and more in the series.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Lucas is thrilled with Eve’s success:
When she was ebullient, when she was in roaring good spirits with her recent accomplishment, kissing her was... beyond description. Her confidence pulled him in; her joy pulled him under. Page 186.Eve knows there is trouble in not trusting:
She fell silent. The word trust was too explosive, a Congreve rocket of issues lay therein, and not all on Deene’s side of the marriage. Page 353.
I received this book from Sourcebooks for an honest review.
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