Hadrian Ames, the Duke of Clayton, needs a bride. He even has the perfect one picked out. That is, until he meets the lovely, free-spirited Natalie Fanshawe. She’s the opposite of what a man of his high rank should desire in a wife—an outspoken American who has never even set foot in a London ballroom.
But Natalie doesn’t have time to be swept off her feet by a handsome duke who must be a spoiled scoundrel like every other British lord. And she couldn’t care less about Hadrian’s title. After all, it’s not as if he actually worked to attain his wealth and status. He surely can’t understand what it’s like to be a busy woman, planning to open a school while trying to reunite a six-year-old orphan with his English relatives. Nevertheless, Hadrian launches his campaign to win her heart. Can the utterly delightful American beauty ever find a way to love him…despite his being a duke?
What can I say? I like old fashioned Dukes. And when there is an American beauty thrown into the mix, things get interesting. Natalie was born and raised in America and she has traveled to England to deliver the son of her dearest friend to her only living family. Due to the death of Leo’s parents in a tragic accident, he has no relatives in America. Audrey, Leo’s mother, ran away years ago from England to escape an arranged marriage. Her father never forgave her and now it seems he also blames Leo. So Natalie really is torn between fulfilling her dying friend’s wish to deliver Leo to his family and to take Leo back to America.
Hadrian is surprised to encounter a stunning woman traveling on her own, with her young charge. When she misses her carriage to England, he offers her a place in his lackey. He didn’t realize that Leo was actually the son of his betrothed, who ran away with her lover. Hadrian was just on his way to Audrey’s father to discuss whether the marriage agreement from him to Audrey would be changed upon her sister, lady Ellen. Because Hadrian needs a wife. A wife who is familiar with etiquette and a future duchess. Certainly not an American woman, who is against English protocol and who refuses to curtsy to even the Prince. But why can’t he keep his eyes of Natalie? Funny, charming and a cozy read. Three out of five stars from me and a special thank you to Netgalley for providing the arc.
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Published: December 2019
My Rating: ♥♥♥