Published by Harlequin Historical on October 17th 2017
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo
Betrothed…to the wrong man!
Building a life away from her bullying family, schoolmistress Helen Tilney now needs to convince her childhood sweetheart she's a worthy bride. Standing in her way is Lord Hunter—the man Nell has just discovered she's betrothed to!
Hunter's offer of marriage to Nell came out of guilt, and now seems less than appealing! So when she asks for his help to win another man, he agrees. Until their lessons in flirtation inspire a raging desire that has Hunter longing to keep Nell for himself…
Book 1 in the Wild Lords and Innocent Ladies trilogy
Nell took the glass, breathing in the scent of the cider, and sighed.
‘It’s just cider,’ he said with a laugh, his expression losing its uncharacteristic grimness. ‘You look as if I am offering you the elixir of the gods.’
She shook her head and tasted it. In all her years attending the fête with her father she had never been permitted to taste this hedonistic brew and it had achieved mythical proportions in her mind. It didn’t disappoint – it slid down her throat, evoking a thoroughly sensual response like stepping into a warm spring swirling amber and amethyst and gold. She closed her eyes to let the taste spark those colours, surrounding her and fading away at the end, leaving just the fundaments of apple and cinnamon and a hint of clove. She opened her eyes with another sigh, letting it go.
‘That was my first time.’
As the silence stretched and with the glow of the bonfires lighting the same colours in his eyes she could believe she had conjured Hunter from the same pagan spring in her mind. It took her a moment to even realize her words might be grossly misconstrued.
‘My first cup of Wilton cider,’ she explained.
‘You have an interesting way with firsts, Nell,’ he said and the spirits in the cider, which had been tumbling through her quite leisurely, chose that moment to expand in a rush of heat that spread through her like the birth of a sun.
Lara is giving away the reader’s choice of either an eBook or Paperback of The Lord Hunter’s Cinderella Heiress!
To have a chance of winning, Lara asks:
Horses are a central part of my hero’s and heroine’s lives, and in Lord Hunter’s Cinderella Heiress Nell teases Hunter about his horses’ names – Valiant and Courage. What is the most peculiar name for a pet that you’ve encountered, and is there a story behind it?
~~Reviewed by Monique~~
LORD HUNTER’S CINDERELLA HEIRESS is everything I love about historical romance and why I read historical romance!
Nell Tilney has finally reached the age of majority, she can claim her inheritance, and be rid once and for all of her weak father and her harpy of an aunt. Just arrived in London from school in Keswick, Nell finds the Tilney home deserted, but she remembers that Lord Hunter lives nearby, and late in the evening, Hunter is shocked to see Nell at his door. Nell and Hunter had met once four years before, at a family dinner when she had the courage to stand up to her aunt. Hunter and Nell’s father had a business meeting to reach an agreement regarding the water rights for their country estates. An agreement was reached, only Nell was never told that it was to marry Hunter upon her reaching the ripe old age of 21!
Forget the somewhat cheesy title, and lose yourself in this spectacular and grandiose romance! Hunter is an apologetically charming rake with a secret, he had taken pity on Nell seeing how her aunt and father neglected her, and he admired her show of temper and her love of horses. He likes her and he will help her; Hunter thought he would get himself an accommodating wife and pursue his life as if nothing much had changed, but Nell has grown surer of herself and now that she has her own money, no one will dictate her how to live anymore. Nell is exactly the type of heroine I wished we saw more often: she is strong, determined, and as independent as a woman could be in 1820; she is also extremely perceptive, kind and generous, but not blind to the ways of the world, or of Hunter’s, for that matter. Nell is so devoid of artifices that she leaves Hunter utterly discombobulated.
LORD HUNTER’S CINDERELLA HEIRESS is a character study as nuanced as the paintings from the Masters and is positively enthralling because of Ms. Temple’s superb storytelling skills, her gloriously evocative descriptions and her knowledge of horses. Ms. Temple’s mastery of the English language is such that the transition between the narrative and the dialogues is absolutely seamless. It would be difficult to mention highlights because LORD HUNTER’S CINDERELLA HEIRESS is one big highlight; I found no weaknesses at all. The pacing is impeccable; the structure is flawless, and the dialogues are remarkably witty and clever. Or maybe I ought to mention the curricle rides: they are pure marvels of literary delight!
And last but certainly not least, Lara Temple’s impossibly gorgeous prose. Luminous and incandescent, Ms. Temple’s writing captures every frisson of burning passion; every fluttering of a heartbeat in the presence of the loved one; every sensory experience, be it petting a horse, drinking warm cider on a cold day, and irrevocably falling in love. I am overjoyed that LORD HUNTER’S CINDERELLA HEIRESS is the first book in a series, and I wish they were already all published.
I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book.