On the night of the Parkhurst ball, someone had a scandalous tryst in the library.
Was it Lord Canby, with the maid, on the divan? Or Miss Fairchild, with a rake, against the wall? Perhaps the butler did it.
All Charlotte Highwood knows is this: it wasn’t her. But rumors to the contrary are buzzing. Unless she can discover the lovers’ true identity, she’ll be forced to marry Piers Brandon, Lord Granville—the coldest, most arrogantly handsome gentleman she’s ever had the misfortune to embrace.
When it comes to emotion, the man hasn’t got a clue.
But as they set about finding the mystery lovers, Piers reveals a few secrets of his own. The oh-so-proper marquess can pick locks, land punches, tease with sly wit . . . and melt a woman’s knees with a single kiss. The only thing he guards more fiercely than Charlotte’s safety is the truth about his dark past.
Their passion is intense. The danger is real. Soon Charlotte’s feeling torn. Will she risk all to prove her innocence? Or surrender it to a man who’s sworn to never love?
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
With a Clue-like mystery and one of the funniest scenes we've read in ages, the fifth book in the Spindle Cove historical series was a pure delight. Bubbly debutante Charlotte Highwood and stoic Piers Brandon, Marquess of Granville, are an oddly matched pair. Mistaken for a different couple caught canoodling in the library, the two have two weeks to prove it wasn't them or they're bound for marriage. Humor, intrigue, and sensuality meld together in this wonderful regency romance.
Dare's latest novel, which links her popular Spindle Cove and Castles Ever After series, opens in 1819 with a sizzling, scandalous encounter in a velvet-draped alcove at an English country estate. Charlotte Highwood and Piers Brandon, who have only just been introduced, hear but don't see a pair of passionate lovers and inadvertently duck into the same niche in order to avoid them. Charlotte is shocked to find herself chest to chest with Piers, but her mortification truly sets in after the mysterious lovers leave and others who overheard them insinuate that Charlotte and Piers were the ones enjoying intimate pursuits. Piers and Charlotte hastily arrange a private engagement to salvage Charlotte's reputation before word gets around, but Dare's unconventional heroine is reluctant: she wants to marry for love, not honor. Charlotte tries to identify the mysterious lovers to clear her own name of scandal so she can get out of her engagement to Piers, a dashing yet cold marquess who's also a spy for the Crown. But her intrepid sleuthing alarms Piers, who has his own secrets to hide. Artful diversions, a clever heroine, and intense passion are all brought together by Dare's smart writing and spot-on matchmaking. There's just the right amount of intrigue, and even the minor characters have layered personalities. The irresistibly provocative, classy love scenes set the bar high for other historical romance novels.
I liked this book very much and would definitely recommend it to romance readers.
Great chemistry. Flows.
Sweet & Saucy Story!
I'm a huge fan of Ms. Dare's writing, and so thankful she tied up these two characters together. Great development: Piers & Charlotte both come to fully realized, vastly likeable, forms, and more depth in Mama Highwood's character as well (I now have even greater respect for her nerves.) I can imagine that even the new reader would now want to go back to learn all about Spindle Cove and the castles series! A nice weaving together of old characters and new, with laughs and surprises along the way. Thanks, I couldn't put it down!