Return to New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Hoyt's signature drama and intrigue, where two enemies will discover if their marriage of convenience can survive -- 'til death do they part.
Ambitious, sly, and lethally intelligent, Gideon Hawthorne has spent his life clawing his way up from the gutter. For the last ten years, he's acted as the Duke of Windemere's fixer, performing the duke's dirty work without question. Now Gideon's ready to quit the duke's service and work solely for himself. But Windermere tempts Gideon with an irresistible offer: one last task for Messalina Greycourt's hand in marriage.
Witty, vivacious Messalina Greycourt has her pick of suitors, so when her uncle demands Messalina marry Mr. Hawthorne, she is appalled. But Gideon offers her a devil's bargain of his own: protection and freedom in exchange for a true marriage. Messalina feigns agreement and plots to escape their deal. Only the more time she spends with Gideon, the more her fierce, loyal husband arouses her affections. But will Gideon's final deed for Windemere destroy the love growing between them?
An arranged marriage leads to passion, intrigue, and love in Hoyt's engaging second Georgian-era Greycourt romance (after Not the Duke's Darling). Gideon Hawthorne is tired of working as a henchman for the dastardly Duke of Windemere. But when the Duke offers Gideon his niece Messalina Greycourt's hand in marriage in exchange for one final job, Gideon, who has been besotted by Messalina since they were teens, can't refuse not even when he learns the job is murder. Messalina's hefty dowry and high connections might finally allow Gideon to leave behind his lowly past. Though fiery Messalina balks at the arrangement, she realizes that marrying Gideon offers an escape from the tyrannical rule of her uncle. The dynamic relationship between Messalina and Gideon is alluring, stirring, and sensual, but complicated by Gideon's struggles to fulfill his commitment to the Duke and the constant interference of Messalina's siblings, who hope to rescue her from Gideon while evading their uncle's sinister machinations. Historical romance fans will be gratified by the way Hoyt highlights social issues, focusing on Gideon and Messalina's struggle against poverty and 18th-century gender roles. Credible characters, steamy romance, and heart-pounding action set this romance apart. This edition includes a bonus novella not seen by PW.
What a unique, in depth, altogether different story. So many Victorian romances only glean the surface of different topics-but this book was gritty, twisting, and at times funny. The lead characters played off each other and the story was refreshing and dark at times. Can’t wait for the next one.