Engaged to the dark and dashing Lord Trevithan, Joanna Lindby should be the happiest of ladies in Regency London. But she wonders—why would this enigmatic lord choose her? She’s shy, never arguing, always polite. But when a note arrives calling off the wedding, Joanna vows that she will be married in June, no matter the cost.
England’s top intelligence agent Allister Fenwick, Lord Trevithan, is shocked when Joanna demands an explanation. He never sent that note. Someone is trying to come between them. Though Allister promised himself to leave the world of espionage, he cannot help but be drawn into this case, if only to protect his surprisingly headstrong bride-to-be. Yet, is it an old enemy or an old friend causing the mischief? Can a little espionage unmask hidden hearts in time for a June wedding?
Second book in the Spy Matchmaker series after The Husband Mission, this sweet Regency romance is an expanded version of a novella originally published by Kensington in His Blushing Bride. The novella won a coveted Top Pick from RT Book Reviews. The Spy Matchmaker: all the intrigue of love.
Here’s a sneak peek:
Allister led Joanna to where double doors opened out onto a balcony overlooking the rear garden. The cool night air brushed her bare shoulders above the bodice of her gown.
“Have you something to tell me about our mysterious note, then?” Joanna asked, trying not to allow her concerns to show in tone or action.
“Only that I remain on the scent,” he promised her. “But it struck me that perhaps I had jumped to an unwarranted conclusion. Do you have any idea who might have sent it?”
Joanna raised her brows. Moonlight bathed him in silver, cast his features in sharp relief. “No, of course not.”
“No swains pining for your love?”
She shook her head. “And how am I to answer that without appearing pitiful or vain? Suffice it to say that no one I know wishes us ill, my lord.”
He blew out a breath. “Of course. Forgive me. I didn’t want to leave any stone unturned.”
Joanna touched the brocade of his waistcoat, then pulled back her hand. “We know little about each other, I suppose. Allow me to assure you that my life was tremendously boring before you arrived in it. No secrets, no tragedy other than the loss of my father too early. I had a quiet upbringing with a doting governess and indulgent parents.”
“Loving parents,” he corrected her. “I can see that even now in your mother, and I envy you.”
“Because you were nearly an orphan,” she surmised, remembering what he’d told her.
“That and the fact that you have others you can rely on. Family, friends, suitors.”
She shook her head with a laugh. “No suitors.”
His head turned as if he was eying her. “Ever?
“Well, certainly I had gentleman callers,” she said, back stiffening despite her best efforts. “Do you wish their names for references?”
He started laughing, and her hackles came down. “No, thank you,” he said. “I need no one to tell me what a gem you are. I merely wish to be certain one of the fellows you once fancied isn’t trying to regain his hold.”
“Rest assured, Allister, there was no one I fancied before you, and I know there will be no one after.”
He touched her cheek, and she shivered, but it had nothing to do with the air. He drew her into the shelter of his arms, pressed a kiss against her lips, and the rest of the world faded away.
All at once, he straightened, arms tightening protectively around her.
“What is it?” Joanna asked.
He set her back from him. “I merely realized we were being rude to our hostess and your friend to remain out here so long. We should return.”
He took her hand and led her through the door.
Disappointment sat like a cloak on her shoulders. For a moment, she’d felt so close to him, their love as bright as the stars. Then the light had snuffed out. What was she to do? If she could not hold Allister’s attention on a moonlit balcony, she very much feared she would never hold it at all.