“Megan Frampton’s delightful characters and delicious sense of humor always entertain!”
- Sabrina Jeffries
In this Dukes Behaving Badly holiday novella, a young lady entertains a sudden proposal of marriage—to a man she’s only just met
What does a lady do when a man she’s never seen before offers his hand in marriage? Lady Sophronia Bettesford doesn’t scream and run away. Instead, she accepts the shocking proposition. After all, what’s her other choice? To live with her cousin, caring for six children and a barnyard full of chickens?
James Archer has roamed the world, determined never to settle down. He’s faced danger and disaster…he fears nothing and no one—except his mother and her matchmaking ways. So when ordered to attend a Christmastime house party filled with holiday cheer and simpering young misses, he produces—a fiancée!
Sophronia and James vow to pretend to be in love for one month. But when they promise to give each other a Christmas kiss, it becomes clear that this pact made out of necessity might just be turning into love.
An Avon Romance
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wonderful and entertaining story.
I’ve read this series from the beginning: it mixes some clever scenes, dialogue and intriguing characters and comes out with pure entertainment. And No Groom at the Inn is no different and perhaps even more enjoyable for the Christmas time setting.
Lady Sophronia is the daughter of an impoverished earl who has made no provisions for her after his death, and her options are limited by both station and sex. With no plans or suitors on the horizon, she receives a letter from a male cousin, taking ‘responsibility’ for her care and reputation by making her an ad hoc governess and chicken mistress. Yes, Chickens. The brashness of the tone of the letter and the dismal future it promises, she’s between a rock and a hard place.
James Archer has avoided growing moss under his feet, and the resultant commitments that entails by traveling the world. Never in one place too long, he’s received an invitation that is impossible to ignore from his Mother. The house party is bound to be filled to the brim with ‘eligible’ women, and the only way for him to avoid the problem is a rather unconventional proposition to the woman he spots at the inn.
Negotiations complete, Sophronia has the possibility of a small cottage of her very own, away from children and chickens. James has a fiancé to sport upon his arm at the party, and possesses the ability to quash his mother’s dreams in the nicest way possible. But, our couple is placed in the position of spending time together in a way that enforces the ruse.
These two are so sweet and adorable together: James is, above all, a gentleman and when he realizes just how dire Sophronia’s circumstances were, he’s got his inner rake toned down, and finds someone far more unique and interesting than he thought possible, perhaps even showing him that not all commitments are bad ones. Sophronia is not thinking in terms of a happy ever after until her cottage is available, and a husband (or anyone to curtail her own whims) is not in that plan.
Full of humor and bright conversation, several poultry-themed puns (you can almost picture the shudder upon her face) and a solid build up to friendship and true esteem, the story only gets more intriguing as James starts to fall, and tries to convince Sophronia of his true esteem. With several moments of house party antics, the warm up to Christmas and two delightful characters, this is a wonderful and entertaining story.
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.