on July 10th 2017
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Lord Jeremy Landon, Earl of Bennington, spent the last ten years rebuilding the ruined earldom he inherited from his scandal-ridden uncle. He has one final debt to repay. In lieu of money, though, he is manipulated into marrying a spinster…
Lady Eliza Burke is tired of living under the rule of a tyrannical mother. She’ll do anything to escape, even marry a man she doesn’t know—and a man her mother despises. Eliza doesn’t believe herself destined for love. Lord Bennington doesn’t believe he’s destined for happiness. Both are about to be tested by a scandal that could tear them apart forever.
With Eliza’s hand over his, Jeremy allowed himself to feel the full measure of the guilt he’d pushed away for years, telling himself it no longer mattered because the estate and the family name were more important than anything else.
He didn’t want to let go, though—didn’t want to admit that perhaps he’d taken things too far. He raised his chin and withdrew his hand. “Music is nothing more than a frivolity.”
When she reached for him again, he pulled away.
“My lord…” Her was face full of concern, her voice soft. It would be so easy to kiss her now. To capture her lips with his and drink her long and deeply, inhaling the rosy scent of her. “I don’t think those things are frivolous. Least of all music. You’re entirely wrong on that score. Perhaps you should think about taking it up again.”
“It’s too late for that.”
~~Reviewed by Lisa~~
“That’s what’s important? How things look?”
“How things look is of the utmost importance. The rest is nothing more than diversions and I don’t have time for diversions.” (Location 1263 39%)
This has been how Jeremy Landon, Earl of Bennington, has approached his life for the past ten years since inheriting the earldom. He has worked tirelessly to rebuild the earldom after his uncle had run it into and its reputation into the ground. He has ignored society, friends and most of his family and has become cynical. He has no real desire or room in his life for marriage except for the need of an heir.
Eliza, Lady Elizabeth Rosamund Burke, is the daughter of an earl and has a mother that is bitter, nasty and heartless. She has had a very traumatic experience that has caused her to believe she is destined to be a spinster. She knows family secrets and would move heaven and earth to keep them and not allow certain family members to be hurt. This is her motivation for her actions. She is a beautiful and smart woman that acts the victim to the point that I wanted to shake her! While she missed her father, whom she supposedly had a very good and trusting relationship, she seemed to dismiss it and not allow it to help her see good in people.
This was a new to me author. The blurb pulled me in but I struggled with the H & H. Yes, they each had noble reasons for their decisions, but the author failed to create a safe haven within the couple to allow them to grow together. The started as advisories and it did not really change until the very end of the story and it felt like a couple of pages got stuck together (I us a Kindle). There was a sudden jealousy in Jeremy, which in my opinion, he had not earned that privilege to have. Their intimate moments seemed to be more about him and it was only in the end that her pleasure really became important to him. At the 70% point, he decided that Eliza deserved the best of everything, but it didn’t change his demeanor from adversarial to loving until the very end. Their HEA did not warm slowly it just felt forced at the end. The reasons for Eliza’s caution with men was brought up but the actual justice was lost and that closure would have explained her change of heart in the end.
I am not writing this author off, there were glimmers of goodness to come. I will read more of her stories to see if this was just a fluke. I give this 3.5 stars.
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.