The pampered daughter of a duke …
Lady Arabella Tremont has spent her entire life protected and overshadowed by her restrictive father. But she is a Tremont, after all, and the morning after she is nearly ruined at a ball by a handsome stranger, Arabella's father demands she make an arranged match with the heir to a dukedom. In desperation, Arabella takes matters into her own hands.
Takes a London holiday with the most unsuitable of chaperones …
Major Kingsley is in London to avoid his parents' dreadful house party. To his surprise he runs into the enticing—and unforgettable—minx he met at a ball the previous night. Arabella, or Birdie, as he knows her, insists he owes her three favors—for he's put her in a terrible pinch. Kingsley agrees, if only to delay his trip home and because the notion of spending the day with this enchanting bit of muslin is too tempting to resist. But all too quickly he discovers Arabella's requests are hardly what he expected …
wonderful novella that has me wanting to read more of her work.
This novella-length installment fits nicely between books 8 and 9 in the Bachelor Chronicles series, but not having read the earlier books in the series (like me) you won’t find any great gaps in information, just a story that leaves you wanting to return to the world Elizabeth Boyle has created.
Kingsley is returned from the war in France, after taking some time to vacation on the continent: a choice that puts him firmly in his parent’s bad graces. They want him to do the right thing and marry, an idea that is second on his not to do list, right after listening to his parent’s concerns. Escaping, he heads to a masquerade ball, with plans to find a willing widow or courtesan.
Arabella is approaching the end of her father’s patience: still unmarried and not appearing to find any possibilities on the horizon. She is attending the ball, and is mulling over options in her mind when Kingsley makes a very forward approach, causing a small scandal in society.
Now possibly ‘ruined’, Arabella’s father demands she marries a man of his choice, and she is despairing of her life. A fluke circumstance and an aunt giving her freedom to run allows her to dash from the carriage, almost directly into Kingsley’s arms. With a demand that he show her one last adventure, the two start off on a romp to end all romps.
Kingsley and Arabella are adorable together: Boyle develops each character with solid backstories and personalities and given them action and adventure to fuel their getting to know one another. A true treat for a shorter (100 ish) pages, to bring the reader a solid sense of both issues and desires while making the romance build naturally (if quickly) to a happy resolution.
I’ve read another book from Boyle’s Rhymes with Love series, and her humor and believability of characters is rich and nuanced, with lovely little twists that feel appropriate for the period. Her writing is solid and strong, and leaves the reader with solid visual images that bring the story to light. A wonderful novella that has me wanting to read more of her work.
I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.