|Charlotte is an unusual person, an heiress that no one wants. She is too tall, too redheaded, too opinionated, too smart, and too American for the Ton. From the time her aunt died when she was a child, she has been passed from one relative to another. All of them loved her money but had no use for her. When Lord Westover lost her in a card game to John Archer and his wife Lady Victoria, she finally feels like she has found a home. They didnít even send her away when she insulted their nephew the Duke of Peckham, in fact they, including the duke found it amusing. Things donít go well for long, someone has murdered two debutantes reputed to be among the front runners to become Nathanielís duchess, and then Charlotte herself is kidnapped. Despite her reluctance to marry, she must help the family who took her in, and she must help find a killer.
Ms. Corwin has managed to deftly combine two of my favorite genres, the Regency Romance and a classic style Mystery. Charlotte is an anomaly among the British upper class for all that she is related to members of that class. Her American origins and accent make her different and her red hair adds to that distinction. She does not deal well with fools and is fond of speaking her mind, making her very different from the vapid misses available, very available to the duke during the season. Nathaniel is feeling hunted, he is being hunted by those misses. It is no wonder he is viewed as a misogynist by the Ton. He finds females willing to be compromised everywhere. I particularly loved the Archers and could not decide whether they were brilliant or deranged. John seems scatty and his plots do not always work but the born gambler is willing to try anything to make his nephew happy. Lady Beatrice is beautiful but just the opposite inside. The plot is as convoluted and entertaining as the Archer family. I really loved this tale, the mystery alone would have kept me hooked, but I got a great Regency as a bonus.
Reviewer: Maura Frankman
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