on February 28th 2017
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Can a beautiful Worthington widow find love again? Depends on who’s asking . . .
Before he died, Patience was the Earl of Worthington’s second wife. So why shouldn’t Patience be allowed a second chance at marriage, too? Of course, finding a new husband was not something the mother of four had ever planned on. But a surprise encounter with her first love has suddenly made the impossible seem possible all over again . . .
It seems like a lifetime ago that Richard, Viscount Wolverton, was halfway around the world, looking for adventure . . . while Patience, at her coming-out, was left with no choice but to take old Worthington’s hand. Richard never forgot the woman whose heart he yearned for—and now that he’s back, he’s not going to let her slip away again . . .
The day after Richard had been told Pae was ill, he was in the reading room at Brook’s having coffee and waiting until he could try to see her again. All he’d been able to think about was her boast that she never took a chill, and now she was sick.
If she was not better today, he would send for some fruit from his succession houses. They would be much better quality than what one could procure in London.
Another gentleman entered the room, drawing a chair up next to his.
“What is my stepmother to you?”
He glanced at Lord Worthington’s stern face and carefully folded the paper, placing it on the low table next to him. “Why do you wish to know?”
“Because she has been asking for you. She’s running a fever.”
Richard stared at the younger man for what seemed like eons before he finally understood. “I’ll come straightaway.”
As he started to rise Worthington’s hand clamped down on Richard’s arm. “I’ll ask you again, what is she to you?”
He looked straight into the other man’s eyes. “The only woman I have ever loved.”
Worthington gave a terse nod. “I was afraid it was something like that.” He released Richard’s arm. “My carriage is outside.”
You can follow the Worthingtons series on Goodreads.
~~Reviewed by Monique~~
So they meet again. Patience had not expected to run into Richard at a ball. Nineteen years ago, Richard had missed his chance with the woman he loved, and Patience had to marry a man of her family’s choosing. Past the foolishness of youth, and Patience now a widow, Richard vows to finally conquer the heart of the woman he still loves and marry her.
It’s always nice to see a story featuring older characters in a romance and finding their happy-ever-after: both Richard and Patience are over 35. The real hurdle is that Patience’s stepson has the guardianship of her daughters, and she refuses to be separated from them; it’s a rather complicated family situation because of Regency law, however, it was satisfactorily resolved in the end. Both Richard and Patience are lovely people, who truly love each other, and always have; they were victims of circumstances, mostly due to Richard’s love of adventure.
Novellas can be restrictive, but I found that THE SECOND TIME AROUND could have been better balanced. I felt Patience and Richard were “rushed” into the initial sex scene. I would have preferred their rekindled romance to last longer before they hopped into bed, which was also a tad too convenient and somewhat unoriginal. The pages used for the second sex scene could have been put to better use, the above mentioned rushed courtship, especially since that second sex scene, while lovely, was unnecessary to the plot, as an event that had occurred previously was sufficient for storyline purposes. Another little issue was that, while perfectly charming, there were many superfluous details about the numerous children, and again this is because of the very short length of the material, otherwise it was delightful.
Ella Quinn’s writing is gorgeous, as usual; her attention to detail makes us participants in this beautiful story, and her eloquence conveys the myriad emotions the characters experience. I will never tire of honourable heroes who do what’s right and prove themselves to be worthy of a fine lady.
I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book.