Genre: Historical Romance; Regency Romance; Romance
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
How I acquired this book: It was a gift from my grandmother years ago.
Goodreads Blurb: Her beauty rivaled only by her sense, Venetia Lanyon is nearly resigned to spinsterhood, thanks to the enormous amount of responsibility she inherited with a Yorkshire estate, an invalid brother and the lackluster efforts of two wearisomely persistent suitors. Then she meets her neighbor, the infamous Lord Damerel, a charming rake shunned by polite society--exactly the type of man that a woman of quality should stay away from.
Though his scandalous past and deepest secrets give Venetia every reason to mistrust him, a rogue always gets what he wants. Without warning, his demanding kiss threatens to become a bachelor's undoing…and a spinster's most passionate awakening.
My Review: Venetia Lanyon may be resigned to the life of a spinster, but striking up a friendship with Jasper Damarel, the local bad boy, changes her mind. This friendship is warm and genuine, as is the romance that grows from it--and that accounts for the exceptional charm of this book. The brotherly friendship between Venetia's younger brother and Jasper only adds to that charm.
Venetia herself, meanwhile, is my favorite Heyer heroine. She also seems the most real to me; however much I adore Sophy from The Grand Sophy, she always seemed larger than life--not to mention exhausting! Venetia, by contrast, inhabits a smaller, more down to earth world. More importantly, I love her sense of the ridiculous and her quiet determination to make the best of her lot.
The problems confronting Venetia and Jasper are realistic, even if they are somewhat of their own making. (Or at least of Jasper's making.) Nonetheless, I was confident they would find a way through them. And neither the characters nor their conflicts grow old--I've read this book ten times at least, and it's one I'll keep coming back to.
Available on Kindle: No.