In New York Times bestselling author Cathy Maxwell's glittering new series, wedding bells are ringing… until the return of a rake throws a bride's plans— and heart—into a tailspin
Every debutante aspires to snag a duke. Elin Morris just happens to have had one reserved since birth. But postponements of her marriage to London's most powerful peer give Elin time to wonder how she will marry Gavin Baynton when she cannot forget his brother, Benedict.
Already exasperated at being yanked from the military to meet "family obligations," now Ben must suffer watching his arrogant sibling squire the only woman he has ever loved. Joining the army saved Ben from sinking into bitterness, but seeing Elin again takes him back to the day they surrendered to their intoxicating desire.
As the wedding draws near, Elin tries to push Ben far from her thoughts. When danger brings them together, there is no denying their feelings. But can Elin choose love over duty...?
A delicious duke prepares to marry his perfect bride, only to discover that she's in love with someone else: his brother. Maxwell (The Groom Said Yes) delivers sweetly scintillating romance spiced with a dash of mystery in the first novel of her Marrying the Duke Regency series. Elin has been groomed since birth to be the wife of Gavin, the Duke of Baynton. A youthful indiscretion with Gavin's brother, Ben, quickly ended with heartbreak. He was sent off to military service, and she devoted herself to her familial duty. When Ben comes home after eight years of no contact, arriving on the night of Elin and Gavin's betrothal ball, it's not to claim Elin's hand but to blast Gavin for ruining Ben's military career. Even though he's grown up, at heart he's still a grumpy younger brother. Lighthearted fun perfectly balances the somewhat unconventional take on the mores of the time and the enormity of a threat to Elin's life. The focus on strong characterization sets the stage for an exceptionally cozy read and heightens anticipation for the rest of the series.
Fun and light with a few twists and some moments of complete self-indulgence
I’ve read the prequel to this series, and enjoyed the literary obsession of the heroine, fobbed off by many as just another pretty face. In this story, Elin has everything every girl should want: a wonderful debut season topped with an engagement to a Duke, making her the envy of her friends. Now, her life is in the country as the wedding plans are being made and her fiancé Gavin has decided his brother Ben must give up ‘playing soldier’ and return home to assist him.
Dancing the line between convention of the time and appealing to more modern readers, Maxwell dances Elin’s former crush, Ben, stirring up her old feelings for him, despite her anger at being ‘abandoned’. Ben believes Elin is too good for his arrogant brother, and he doesn’t appreciate being made to tuck tail and obey his every whim.
A slower pace sets the tone as the history between Elin and Ben is revealed, her father’s plans for her marriage to a peer and the slow redevelopment of their relationship, one that could set the ton on its ear. But, all is not quiet in the country, and whether it is sibling rivalry with Ben and Gavin, a bit of censure of Elin because of her relationship with Ben years ago, or the fact that someone wants Elin dead, the story takes several twists, none of which seem to be noticed by Gavin. When Ben rescues her, and they are able to admit the feelings that still exist, the rather loosely defined love triangle faces another crisis point. Will Elin marry the Duke, the dream of all young women of her station, or will she truly make a match of the century with her fated love?
Fun and light with a few twists and some moments of complete self-indulgence on Elin’s part, a not very kindly Gavin and the true feelings that never seem to fade make this an enjoyable afternoon getaway read.
I received a paperback copy of the title from the publisher via Avon Addicts for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: al conclusions are my own responsibility.