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Ratings and Book Reviews (1 2 star ratings
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  • No plot and didn't like the characters

    DNF at 54%. I really liked the premise of this series about an oft-married woman whose male children have each inherited a Dukedom, the first book contained a murder which was not solved and I was looking forward to the murder forming an arc over the series. This second novel concerns the woman's daughter, Lady Gwyn Drake. She has had some kind of youthful indiscretion(view spoiler) with Captain Lionel Malet and he is blackmailing her as a result. Malet is the sort of bounder who has previously attempted to kidnap a wealthy young woman and force her to marry him. Gwyn fabricated a story that Malet is following her when she and Malet were seen by the estate’s gamekeeper, Joshua Wolfe, to cover up the blackmail threat. Gwyn's brother Thorn then decides that Gwyn must be accompanied everywhere by either himself or Wolfe as protection. At this point I struggled to understand why Thorn wouldn't just warn Malet to stay away from his sister and therefore what merit there was in Gwyn keeping her "secret". Anyway, Gwyn and Joshua have a secret attraction but she thinks he would reject her when he finds out her "secret" and he thinks that, as a wounded marine and an illegitimate son, he isn't good enough for her, yawn. They go to London for Gwyn's debut, she is trying to see Malet to pay him off (because that always works, not!), Joshua is keeping an eye on Gwyn and also trying to get put back on active duty. There's a lot of kissing each other because they are angry, or to prove something, or to hide their faces from saboteurs. I had some issues with the first book in this series and I'm afraid that they were also present here, unfortunately I didn't warm to either Gwyn or Joshua and therefore what led to a low rating for the first book just led me to give up on this book instead. What spoiled it for me was page, after page, after page of heavy petting and sexual encounters with little to no plot development. There seemed to be no furtherance of the murder from the previous book and I found it frankly inconceivable that a young society woman could have done something which could ruin her if anyone ever found out and then continues to behave inappropriately with another man eg fondling and kissing and assignations alone. Anyway, I stopped and started this novel several times but it didn't engage me and I eventually decided to DNF at 54%. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

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