Type: Historical Romance
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
My Copy: Net Galley
CAN A HASTILY ARRANGED MATCH BECOME A LOVE FOR ALL TIME? Harrison Thornwick is the Heirs’ Club’s newest member. His carefree days as a reckless rogue carousing around London are suddenly behind him after the tragic death of his brother leaves him in charge of the family estate. What’s more, the Prince himself has offered to secure his marital prospects. Now Harrison has no choice but to grin and bear his noble fate-and the woman who’s been chosen for him.
Miss Angelina Rule is a spectacular beauty, a dream match for any man. But she is fiercely independent-and full of passion-and is all set to rebel against her royal order of marriage…until she meets the devilishly charming Harrison. With him by her side, Angelina devises a scheme that will teach her meddlesome relatives a lesson, once and for all. But little did she and Harrison expect to fall into a tempestuous attraction-and a powerful desire that neither of them can deny…
This is the second book in the Heirs’ Club Trilogy and I enjoyed it immensely. The Hero is a notorious rake who meets his match with a worthy Heroine.
Harrison Thornwick is the fourth son of an Earl and was never expected to inherit the title. He lived a wild lifestyle and created quite a reputation with his wickedness, until his family was lost to him and he inherited it all. He was distraught and humbled, vowing to rebuild everything including his status with his peers, unfortunately the Prince wants to help and blackmails him into a marriage he is not ready for, but agrees.
Angelina Rule is excited to start her first Season until she finds out her father is penniless and soon to go to debtors prison. Unfortunately the burden drops on her when he proposes a plan the Prince has agreed on, a marriage to the Earl of Thornwick. She is devastated because she was quietly waiting for Captain Maxwell to come back from India to make a match, but is worried about her father and agrees to meet Thornwick with a plan in mind.
The first book in the series was delightful as we were introduced to these three men who were notorious in their activities around town. This is Harrison’s story and I enjoyed his transformation as he changes the minds of the naysayers in London who thought his inherited title was doomed.
Angelina is a wonderful heroine; she knows what she wants out of life and goes after it, usually getting what she wants. Unfortunately she learns that others are in control of her future when her father needs her cooperation or she will lose him. She struggles with her options but settles on a plan that just might work with the help of others.
I adored Harrison, his life is turned upside down and instead of continuing on a deadly path, he changes his ways. He is regretful about what has happened in the past and wants to make amends, starting with his reputation and his future. And although he wants others to watch him flourish in his new role, he rarely does things the proper way as he still has some wildness in him. When he is met with an ultimatum he deals with it grudgingly by going to meet Angelina, only to walk away, he has been in love with a woman who wanted another and is wary. Yet there is something about her that keeps him coming back.
I am not a fan of triangles and when the Captain first appears I was worried about how it would work out, but was very happy with the outcome. Angelina was not a ninny who fawns all over the Captain, thinking he is the same man as when she was sixteen, she is intelligent in her thoughts and actions about the two men and I liked that about her. It also helped that the chemistry between Harrison and Angelina sizzled; her attraction to him is undeniable and they enjoyed their stolen time alone.
Other characters play substantial roles in this book, of course there are Harrison’s two best friends, Bray who we met in the first book and Adam who is a broken man and will be featured in the next book, I can’t wait to read his story, I love those tortured heroes. I also liked Angelina’s grandmother who helps her plan her future. The pace works well and I enjoyed the flow of the story as we watch Angelina and Harrison’s romance develop. The book can be read as a standalone even though it is part of a trilogy as each story ends nicely. A wonderful historical romance with engaging characters, I patiently wait for book three.
I give The Earl Claims a Bride by Amelia Grey 4.25 stars!