Kit Ruthven's Rules (for Rogues)
#1 Love freely but guard your heart, no matter how tempting the invader.
#2 Embrace temptation, indulge your sensual impulses, and never apologize.
#3 Scorn rules and do as you please. You are a rogue, after all.
Rules never brought anything but misery to Christopher “Kit” Ruthven. After rebelling against his controlling father and leaving the family’s etiquette empire behind, Kit has been breaking every one imaginable for the past four years. He’s enjoyed London’s sensual pleasures, but he’s failed to achieve the success he craves as London’s premier playwright. When his father dies, Kit returns to the countryside and is forced back into the life he never wanted. Worse, he must face Ophelia Marsden, the woman he left behind years before.
After losing her father, Ophelia has learned to rely on herself. To maintain the family home and support her younger sister, she tutors young girls in deportment and decorum. But her pupils would be scandalized if they knew she was also the author of a guidebook encouraging ladies to embrace their independence.
As Kit rediscovers the life, and the woman, he left behind, Ophelia must choose between the practicalities she never truly believed in, or the love she’s never been able to extinguish.
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A completely sweet feel-good romance that is perfect for that “I’m having a bad day” reading option
A completely sweet feel-good romance that is perfect for that “I’m having a bad day” reading option.
Christopher Ruthven, son of the empire that created the Ruthven Rules of Etiquette turned his back on the family empire to pursue his own heart – working as a playwright. He’s living the high life in London, and built himself quite a reputation, but none of that comes with success in his own endeavors. Now, with the death of his father, the family business needs and requires him to return, and Kit returns home with less than wonderful expectations.
Ophelia Marsden is supporting herself by tutoring young ladies, after refusing an offer of marriage and the death of her father. Chafing against, yet working publicly within, the rules that constrain women, she’s also the authoress of a guide for women that encourages them to explore their own independence and find self-direction while ignoring (if not upending) the Ruthven Rules.
The history between Ophelia and Kit is a checkered one, she was expecting a proposal that never came as he was off to pursue other interests (and women). But all is not lost for Kit: he does feel remorse for his callous treatment of Ophelia, and hopes that they can coexist as acquaintances, if not actually friendly. Years have honed Ophelia’s reactions to a fine point, while not quite bitter, she is tottering on that edge, and the return of the one who shattered her girlish dreams is not a welcome sight.
This journey of discovery was wonderful: both have to come to recognize strengths and weaknesses, the changes brought by time and experience. Ophelia’s refusal to bow to Kit’s efforts without having him actually see who she is, what she believes and, most importantly, how she does NOT need him but may want him in her life is wonderful. A wholesale change from the “I’m mad at you but you brought flowers and said pretty words” moments that turn so many women’s hearts in historical romance.
Well-developed characters with a heroine who is solidly out of her time in her beliefs and willingness to share those ideas, and she’s not afraid of making a point. Often with humorous results. Kit was humbled, something he needed, and brought to see the error of his ways, and the change in his approach to women, Ophelia, life and work were wonderful.
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.