An unwilling Duke and his defiant Lady must embrace a desire beyond reason to heal the wounds of the past.
She vows to never let herself fall in love again…
With her final season in the ton a surprising success, Lady Camille Bellington retires to her family's Yorkshire estate for Christmas with a marriage proposal in hand. Beautiful and charming, but too independent for society, Camille has given up on the hope to marry for love. So she will marry for duty. The man of her childhood dreams hasn't been home in three years, even to secure his dukedom, and her heart went with him. She's not chasing a duke ever again.
The woman he desires is lost to him…
War hero Tristan Tierney, Duke of Mercer, returns to his ancestral home for the holidays to find himself burdened with a title and the woman he left behind betrothed to another. As he's only seen death and destruction for years, he's come to believe true love is a myth. His aloof demeanor veils his deepest unspoken desire, to possess Camille Bellington.
Childhood friendship gives way to something altogether more dangerous as two people give love a second chance.
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Where the Reader Smiles
Camille Bellington has loved Tristian Tierney since they were children. He is returned from the war and is now the Duke of Mercer. He is a guest her aunt’s holiday dinner. So is Camille’s intended. She is still in love with Tristan; Tristan is totally smitten with her; and Ridley, her intended, hasn’t a clue. From the moment at dinner when Tristan told the story of Camille and the swan, I was hooked. Why is Camille marrying Ridley? Just how is Tristan to win the independent woman?
Tristan has come back from the war emotionally damaged. His nightmares are horrific. He has been reclusive, worked on restoring the estate he inherited. Camille has a calming effect on him. Camille is happy and independent. She loves her plants and conservatory, and would love to be a member of the Botanical Society. The chemistry between these two is sizzling. Camille’s Aunt Bel and her friend Adelia, Countess Milburn, are scheming, gossipy, outspoken, funny, and absolutely loveable. They want Camille to find love and be happy. This a wonderful story, emotional, funny, and heartwarming, and it ends with a lovely epilogue where the reader smiles.
I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. My review is voluntary.