From the blurb:
There are worse things than hiding in a derelict old cottage, battling field mice, and sucking on one’s last lemon. Or so Lady Annabella Price firmly believes. For example, spending the Season in London with her stepbrother and husband hunting, as her mother has ordered. Instead, Annabella sends her maid in her place and exults in her questionable triumph… Until the insufferable Lord Seabrook shows up.
It seems like a simple favor for a friend, something to distract him from his need to find an acceptable wife. Jonathan Durham, Fourth Earl of Seabrook, travels to Haselmere to find the duke’s stepsister and make certain no harm has befallen her. But Annabella is no damsel in distress. She’s a willful, spirited lady, and the impetuous beauty intrigues Seabrook. When they’re caught in a compromising position and forced into a hurried marriage, Seabrook sees it as the perfect solution to both their problems. But how can he convince his unwilling bride to give their marriage a chance when she’s determined to have it dissolved?
Something like a Lady is a rollercoaster of a story. Whilst you are genuinely sure it will all work out in the end for the couple, Annabella and Jon, you just can’t quite work out how they are going to get there. The book is a real page-turner that draws you into the fascinating love story of this couple whom fate seems to have pulled together, despite each of their best efforts to avoid marriage. In fact, you can’t help but fall in love with the pair yourself: Annabella, who is headstrong, determined, vivacious and quick-witted, and Jon, who is everything a male lead of this genre should be: strong, handsome and honourable.
Despite being set in the regency period, and thus coming up against all the rules and regulations that young single people had to follow in this time, the book does manage to break away from that a little, and the personality and wittiness of the characters shows through. In fact, that is probably one of my favourite aspects of this book: as well as the haughtiness of the period, you also see the humanity of the characters. The way that description is used in the book accentuates this light-hearted approach:
Unsure whether to turn around and stalk off or grab Annabella by the shoulders and give her a good shake, Jon simply stared. Candlelight limned her face and gilded the honey-gold curls that cascaded about her shoulders. Her skin glowed peachy soft and her unusual dark green eyes gleamed like twin pools at midnight. She should have made him think of an angel. What she brought to his mind, though, was his gran’s favourite cat – the disagreeable brown tabby that hated everyone, particularly him, and never failed to spit and hiss whenever he got too close to her favourite perch.
The characterisation of this book is fabulous, leading to characters who not only seem real but are a joy to learn more about. My favourite character has to be Jon’s somewhat eccentric grandmother who steals the limelight at times and provides another humorous dimension to the book.
It is not very often that the main characters of a book of this period find themselves married before they fall in love, and the journey they take to find that love – or at least acknowledge it – provides a unique and enjoyable approach to the period romance genre.
When she looked up again, her expression was unreadable. “I… need to ask… what are your intentions as regards our marriage?”
His intentions? To Hold you and never let you go. To care for you. To worship you in every… He tamped down his baser urges.
This book is the second in a series (Lady Series) by these two authors, and I am now intrigued to read the first in the series, A Lot Like a Lady, which describes what happens to the maid who took Annabella’s place in London.
Something Like a Lady is available now from Amazon; click on the book cover below to visit the store.