I love reading everything from fantasy to historical romances. On a constant quest for more books to read.
Life for Adrian Devereau, the sixth duke of Raven, was flawless, but for one nagging detail. Try as he did to live down to his reputation as the Wicked Lord Raven, the ladies persisted in viewing him as desirable husband material.
So he conceived a bold solution to foil them once and for all--he would marry a woman on her deathbed and adopt the role of grieving widower.
He even found a most suitable wife: Leah Stretton, overtaken by a sudden illness while journeying to London. But with Leah's "miraculous" recovery, Adrian found himself properly wedded to a beauty as headstrong as she was healthy. Now his only chance at freedom was playing her game.
More adept at writing about romance and adventure than living it, Leah could not permit a new family scandal to ruin her sister's launch into society. If Adrian played her devoted husband, she would grant him an annulment later. There was only one rule: neither of them could fall in love. Of course, rules were made to be broken
Adrian Deveraux Earl of Raven is like so many other rakes in regency romances tired of matchmaking mamas and their debutante daughters trying to capture him in marriage.
He is also very drunk, so when he and his similarly inebriated friends arrive at the friends house and the housekeeper in tears tells them that there is a young lady near death in the upstairs chamber. She had been traveling when she fell deathly ill.
Adrian comes up with a not so clever plan.He will marry this dying woman and then when she has kicked the bucket he will be a grieving widower.In effect he will be off the marriage mart.
Did I mention he was drunk? :P
So he,his barrister friend and his priest friend and the near unconscious young woman go through with the ceremony.After wich Adrian returns to London and begins regaling the ton with stories about his sudden marriage and his deep love for his new bride. All the while waiting for a message to arrive with word about her death.
But judge his surprise when his "wife" Leah appears at the door of his London home and she is clearly not in the least dead.In fact she is quite the resolute young lady who informs him that she wont go quietly away and she offers him a deal. If they will pretend to be married for the time it takes for her to launch her younger sister Christiana in society and see her married to some eligible man,then she will agree to an annulment.
Adrian agrees at first reluctant to her proposal but after doing some thinking of his own he agrees...and from there the story goes.
I have to admit that I put down this book with a sigh after reading only a few pages in. The premise was just so silly and unrealistic!
Also the hero was nicknamed Raven.Wich is such a cheesy name.Could it have more cliches?
But I decided to give it another go just to see what would happen next.And then I got swept along.
Adrian is one of those heroes that are far from perfect,of course he is a rake but it goes beyond that,he could be downright sneaky as Leah finds out as she comes to know him better.For example the way he got her into bed...I would have been so angry to find out the truth but hey its romancelandia.
Their relationship was quite the rollercoaster due to both characters having their invidiual insecurities.Leahs being afraid she was too much like her mother and choosing to deny herself happiness and instead try to give her younger sister all that she herself thought she didnt deserve to have.
So despite the marriage being a mismatch in the end the couple complemented each other very well and had me believing in their relationship.And the sex...well that was very racy.;=
While some aspects of the story could have been embellished/researched more once you got past the awkward beginning it was quite an engrossing read. Good if you are looking for a fast and entertaining read with some angst thrown in.