Published by Lyrical Press on August 14, 2018
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo
In the charming seaside town of St. Ives, a buried secret could bring an unlikely pair together for a lifetime...
Clara Anderson's mother has one mission: to marry off her daughter to a titled gentleman. Unfortunately, though the Andersons have come up in the world, Clara is still the granddaughter of a pig farmer, which means no self-respecting aristocrat will marry her. That's just fine with Clara, who's grown to disdain the upper classes. So when she meets an attractive man even more common than she is, she decides it's time to forge her own path...
...Except that handsome, rugged Nathaniel Emory, Baron Alford, is no more a commoner than Clara is a blue-blood. He's appeared on the scene for one reason only: to save his family's estate from ruin by finding the exceedingly valuable blue diamond his grandfather buried in the Anderson's garden fifty years ago. To do that, he must pretend to be a gardener. He didn't count on the most beautiful girl he's ever seen getting in his way. But Clara has made no secret of her dislike for aristocrats. Which means that once she uncovers his ruse, he's certain she'll never see him again.
~~Reviewed by AnnMarie~~
Diamond in the Rough is the third book in The Brides of St. Ives series by Jane Goodger. Although it’s part of a series it can easily be read as a standalone novel.
Nathanial Emory the new Baron Alford desperately needs a large influx of money in order to restore his family home and those of the estate’s tenants. On his deathbed, his grandfather told him of a rare blue diamond that he buried in a garden in St Ives. Before he could give him the exact location he died. That takes Nathanial to the home and garden of Clara Anderson.
Clara is the daughter of parents who worked their way up in the world. The only thing that will make her mother happy is to have Clara and her two sisters marry into the aristocracy. That is the very last thing that Clara wants for herself because she has a very low opinion of them.
When Clara meets Nathaniel it isn’t as Baron Alford, but just Nathanial Emory, the gardener that their mother hired. What a perfect cover for him, a chance to dig up the whole garden and hopefully find the diamond. Clara loves gardens and takes an interest in what he is planting and in him! The more time they spend together the more they start to have feelings for each other. Clara believes that as he is the gardener her mother will never allow them to have any relationship together. Nathaniel can’t let his emotions show until he can be honest with Clara about who he is. That can’t happen until he finds the diamond which seems to be taking longer and longer. In the meantime how can they keep their hands off each other when all they want to do is give in to their passions?
I loved this story especially as there was the perfect balance of light and dark moments. Those light moments always put a huge smile on my face. One of my absolute favourite parts of the book was the perfect ending, I cried, but they were happy joyous tears. There was only one part of the book that bothered me was the story behind the private investigator that is looking for Nathanial. That part just seemed superfluous to the story. It was perfect and exciting enough without it. I enjoyed this book so much that I am definitely going to make sure I read the others in the series.