Regency Historical Romance
One reclusive bluestocking…
Fiona Amberly is more intrigued by the Roman ruins near her manor house than she is by balls. When her dying Grandmother worries about Fiona’s future, Fiona stammers that she’s secretly engaged. Soon she finds herself promising that she will introduce her husband-to-be by Christmas.
One dutiful duke…
Percival Carmichael, new Duke of Alfriston, is in a hurry. He’s off to propose to London’s most eligible debutante. After nearly dying at Waterloo, he’s vowed to spend the rest of his life living up to the ton’s expectations.
One fallen tree…
When Fiona tries to warn a passing coach about a tree in the road, the driver mistakes her for a highwaywoman. Evidently he’s not used to seeing women attired in clothes only suitable for archaeology waving knives. After the driver flees, Fiona decides she may as well borrow the handsome passenger…
Delightful Regency Romp – 5 Stars
This is a superb read by Bianca Blythe. Book #1 in the author’s Matchmaking for Wallflowers series, it contains a feisty and unconventional heroine and a war veteran who, after a brush with death, is committed to conforming to society’s expectations. This fast-paced romance is both amusing and heartfelt.
To comfort her beloved grandmother and avoid any matchmaking attempts, Fiona invents a fiancée. Not just any fiancée, but a gentleman who has valiantly fought in the war, a convenient ruse, as it conveniently explains her husband-to-be’s continuing absence…
However, circumstances conspire so that Fiona is compelled to conjure up said fiancée. Fate plays into her hands when her impulsive nature prompts her to warn a passing coach, which is thundering through the countryside, about a fallen tree. On account of her unconventional behaviour and dress (Fiona has been busy on an archaeological dig) and the fact that she is carrying knives, both the coachman and its occupant are convinced that she is a highwaywoman. Events rapidly spiral out of control and she takes the opportunity to ‘kidnap’ the occupant of the coach, who is conveniently a returning war veteran, and present him to her grandmother as her fiancée.
It is not long before Percival Carmichael, the Duke of Alfrison, decides to entertain himself and play along with his captor’s charade for a few days. So what if he pushes his family responsibilities to the side for a short time, what harm can it do? He is drawn to Fiona’s unconventional behaviour and passion for archaeology, not to mention her beauty and madcap family.
The book is extremely well-paced and highly amusing throughout. I loved the characters of both the hero and the heroine who are extremely well matched. Percival is a reformed rake – reformed on account of the war, which has affected him physically and mentally. He has unexpectedly become a duke, with all of the attendant responsibilities, which he is honour bound to meet. The tension between what Percival desires and how he grapples with what is expected of him is extremely well done by the author. As to Fiona, I loved her feisty and unpredictable nature and how her confidence grew in strength despite the repercussions of her behaviour. I was glued to the pages willing a HEA for the couple as the truth of their situation begins to unravel and misunderstandings abound!
A top read for fans of Regency Romance.
Reviewed by Tina Williams
Please note that a copy of this book was given to me by the author for the purpose of a fair and honest review.
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