THE EARL DOTH PROTEST . . .
For businessman Heath Hextall, inheriting an earldom has been a damnable nuisance. The answer: find a well-bred, biddable woman to keep his life in order and observe the required social niceties. But it's always been clear that Lady Josephine Somerhall is not that woman. Once a shy slip of a girl, Joss is now brilliant, beautiful chaos in a ball gown.
. . . BUT THE LADY KNOWS BEST
In her heart, Joss has always loved Heath, the one person she's always been able to count on. That doesn't mean she wants to marry him though. Without a husband, Joss can do as she pleases-and now, it pleases her to solve the mystery of an encoded file given to Heath by a dying man. It's put Heath in peril once, and Joss won't let that happen again. She'll do what she must to ensure the earl's safety. And to remind him that what she lacks in convention, she makes up for in passion.
Bowen strikes gold with her third Lords of Worth Regency (after A Good Rogue Is Hard to Find). This story has it all: romance, suspense, wit, and Bowen's trademark smart and slightly quirky characters. Josephine "Joss" Somerhall is a fiercely independent, plain-speaking maiden who's just returned to London after decades abroad. Although she hasn't laid eyes on Heath Hextall, the newly minted Earl of Boden, since she was six years old, she's as enamored of him today as she was then. Joss is now a beautiful woman, but Hextall has a difficult time thinking of her as anything other than the pigtailed imp he used to tease. A twist of fate throws them together when they find Gavin Smythe, a friend of Hextall, after he's been badly beaten by a gang of ruffians. His dying wish is for Hextall to safely deliver a mysterious packet of papers to Gavin's brother. Now the lively fun begins as Joss and Heath set out to decipher the encoded papers, find Gavin's brother, and fall in love. Bowen's thrilling plot, spot-on pacing, and savvy characterization will delight her current fans and seduce new ones.