When Lady Margaret Rawson is caught trying to elope with the thoroughly unsuitable James Lawrence, Lord and Lady Rawson decide it’s time to send their daughter away from the temptations of London. The job of delivering the headstrong girl to the family’s isolated Yorkshire estate naturally falls to her governess, Jane Ephram. It should be an easy task, but with the wild Lady Margaret, nothing ever goes according to plan. To make matters worse, Lord Rawson has made it clear that if anything happens to his daughter along the way, Jane will be dismissed without a letter of reference. When Jane finds Lady Margaret’s inn room empty and the charming Sir Nicholas Hollings’s horse missing one morning, she must embark on an adventure of her own with the devilishly handsome baron. Will Jane and Nicholas find Lady Margaret, the scheming Mr. Lawrence, and the missing horse, or will they discover something else entirely?
This is the best of the three in this series. Even though it is the last one, it is basically a standalone read, as hero and heroine are alone and on the road for much of the book.
In the first two instalments of this series I struggled with all the mental lusting and sex thoughts at inappropriate times, and I was glad that wasn’t the case with this one. I also thought there were some interesting little research touches, as the characters travel across England and stop in real places.
This is a short book, and so the relationship moves at a very fast pace, but at least their forced proximity means they get to know each other much faster, and without the usual restrictions polite society would place on them.
I did have some issues. Firstly, the heroine knew the hero for all of a few days when she decided to throw away everything and have sex with him. No worries about pregnancy. No worries about ruination and never being able to find a respectable position again. And then she tells him she won’t marry him! She HAD to!
The other issue is that the point of the story was for the two of them to track down a wayward girl and the horse she stole – a horse that is the key to the hero ever having the finances he needs. And yet when they finally meet up with the girl, they seem to forget all about the horse.
I also found it odd that titled men kept swearing in front of ladies. It’s 1860; gentlemen didn’t do that.
However, this was the strongest story of the three, and I believed in the happy ending more than in the other books, as (until the inappropriate sex!) this was about romance, not lust.
Review copy provided by NetGalley.