Pub Date: August 2011
Length: 355 pages
POV: 3rd, past
FTC: Received from the author at an RT convention (no idea which one)
I will be the first to say that this book should not work. It should be the silliest thing on the darn planet. It's a ridiculous fairy tale with a ridiculous plot that's not very suspenseful at all. But darn it, I read the entire thing in one sitting. I'm still not sure what happened.
I think, technically, this is pretty much a wallpaper romance. There's very little scenery or setting or English trappings. It still didn't seem to matter. My only explanation is strong writing and some fabulous characters. That, and I'm a sucker for good dialogue.
I think what makes this book is that the characters don't really fit in their molds. He is supposed to be a snotty aristocrat and she's supposed to be a marriageable miss on the hunt for a husband. But they refuse to play their roles. From the first moment when they make eye contact after Grier dumps lemon water on him–accidentally on purpose— there is an undeniable attraction. The conflict comes from both fighting the attraction, while convincing themselves that they really need to do what they're supposed to be doing: finding *acceptable* spouses. There is never really any doubt that they want each other, even when they don't like each other very much. But it's that reluctantly realigning themselves to their purposes throughout the novel that keeps things interesting.
My only problem with the book came towards the very end. There's a tacked on kidnapping that really feels like page filler. It's not needed, and the villain's motivations just feel weak. I didn't buy it.
Overall, a pretty predicatable book that is somehow compelling and fun as all heck anyway.
My Grade: B
One of the most notoriously eligible bachelors in Europe is finally ready to marry . . .
For fiercely independent Grier Hadley, being the illegitimate daughter of one of London's most unsavory characters has only one advantage: an enormous, ill-gotten dowry.
Prince Sevastian Maksimi knows where his duty lies: he must find a well-bred young lady—one with a considerable fortune to her name—wed her promptly, and get to the business of producing an heir.
The last thing Grier needs is some unattainable prince curling her toes with his smoldering glances and wicked suggestions. As far as Sev is concerned, she lacks the breeding to become a princess. And yet one kiss from this arresting female is all it takes for him to realize that anyone else in his arms would be unthinkable . . .