Author: Laura Lee Guhrke
Provided Synopsis: They had a deal…
From the moment she met the devil-may-care Duke of Margrave, Edie knew he could change her life. And when he agreed to her outrageous proposal of a marriage of convenience, she was transformed from ruined American heiress to English duchess. Five years later, she’s delighted with their arrangement, especially since her husband is living on another continent.
But deals are made to be broken…
By marrying an heiress, Stuart was able to pay his family’s enormous debts, and Edie’s terms that he leave England forever seemed a small price to pay. But when a brush with death impels him home, he decides it’s time for a real marriage with his luscious American bride, and he proposes a bold new bargain: ten days to win her willing kiss. But is ten days enough to win her heart?
Review: Book Boyfriend Alert! Stuart, the Duke of Margrave, is everything I want in a man and so much more. I adored the confidence he displayed as he met Edie in a London ballroom, and I loved the maturation of his character five years later even more. After a lioness in Africa injures him, Stuart has an epiphany of what really matters in his life. The injured leg he must suffice with for the remainder of his existence causes him to slow down from the reckless pace he had been living to realize the life, happiness, and love he could find at home. His patience with Edie, his wife, melted my heart; particularly in combination with the way he dealt with her emotional scars from an incident in her past.
Edie is an American heiress who came to London nearly six years ago to marry within the Season. A scandal had tarnished not only her reputation at home but her mentality, too. She vows to never again lose control of her life to a man; she sees opportunity when she hears the Duke of Margrave must marry a rich wife to rescue his estate, and she offers him an arrangement that goes as follows. In return for her money she will marry him as long as he leaves England forever. At the time it is a win-win situation for both: she receives freedom and he is excused to live how he chooses. Stuart’s injury and subsequent return home —after five years away — complicate the deal when he decides to win her heart and heal her scars.
The heart-melting romantic moments in this book were plentiful. Edie came off as very skittish towards Stuart for a very long time, yet even when her walls were up the conversation and simple moments between the two of them were a joy to behold. As with all romance books, you know how this one will end, but that did nothing to hamper my enjoyment of the journey. The heroine and (especially) the hero enchanted me, the sensitive nature of the story was handled decently (my only issue with the book is that I wish this point had been handled even slower), and the secondary characters gave further color to the already beautiful picture. I really love it when romance is done right.