Type: Historical Romance
My Copy: Sent
Being good has worked out very badly for Lady Olivia Archer. All she has to show for four seasons on the marriage mart is the nickname Prissy Missy. Her prospects are so bleak that her parents have betrothed her to a stranger with a dire reputation. If Phinneas Cole—aka The Mad Baron—wants a biddable bride, perhaps Olivia can frighten him off by breaking every ladylike rule.
Phinn has admired Olivia’s poise and refinement from afar…qualities that appear to have vanished now that they are officially engaged. This Olivia is flirtatious, provocative, and wickedly irresistible. She’s not at all the woman he bargained for, yet she’s the only one he wants. He’s determined to woo her. She’s determined to resist. But Olivia is discovering there’s nothing so appealing as a fiancé who’s mad, bad, and dangerously seductive…
What a fun and engaging second book in this series, I love these three wallflowers and enjoy how they get their happily ever after.
Lady Penelope’s Finishing School for Young Ladies of Fine Families is about to have their annual party and three of London’s famous wallflowers are not too happy to be some of the only graduates who are still single after several seasons. Olivia is embarrassed that she has just finished her third season without any prospects of marriage, she hates knowing that men avoid polite conversation about her hobbies, and as one of London’s Least Likely to Cause a Scandal she is exhausted with her constant failure.
It is unfortunate that when she finally meets someone that interests her, he turns out to be The Mad Baron, rumored to have killed his wife, and her parents want her to marry him! Lord Radcliffe, Phinneas Cole wants a wife that won’t distract him from his work, he wants simple and because he is a bit awkward he wants to avoid having to woo a woman. He is involved with the Difference Engine (a computer like device) along with the Duke of Ashbrook and is very dedicated to his work. Olivia decides, with her friends Emma and Prudence that order to get Phinn to stop their engagement, she will break every rule she has learned in finishing school.
I have enjoyed this series and I love that Ms. Rodale writes an accompanying novella that takes place in current times and mirrors these events.
I really like Olivia, she is so ready to be done with these seasons but is at a loss as to how to get a man to marry her, as it often seems, those most desperate can never get what they want, and she does give off that desperate aura. Phinn is a true beta hero, more interested in his work than saving the world or protecting his woman, he wants simple and it is interesting that a few years ago, Olivia might have been that woman but she has had enough and sets out to change her image. It is also telling that Phinn feels responsible for his wife’s death and is hurting so has that hurtle to get through.
I love Phinn’s friends and their advice, which is bad. Lord Rogan is hilarious as he tries to help, even telling Phinn to explain to Olivia he is using his “feats of strength” while carrying her, this does not make her feel like a lady. At least Lord Ashbrook has some better advice.
The pace of the story and the romance are a bit slow as we watch Olivia try many methods of causing chaos with her reputation; and it is a bit frustrating when it takes Phinn a long time to tell her about his wife and what happened. But the two together are a good pair and when they finally realize that they are perfect together, they mesh. Although this is the second in the series, you can easily read this as a standalone, as the author brings the series together seamlessly. A truly endearing story featuring wallflower number two, I can’t wait to see what happens to Prudence next.
I give Wallflower Gone Wild by Maya Rodale 4 stars!