In Megan Frampton’s witty historical romance, a woman is judged by her gown, and a man by his reputation—until both are shed in one sexy moment of seduction.
Lady Charlotte Jepstow certainly knows how to make an impression—a terrible one. Each one of her ball gowns is more ostentatiously ugly than the one before. Even she has been forced to wonder: Is she unmarried because of her abysmal wardrobe, or does she wear clashing clothing because she doesn’t want to be pursued in the first place? But when Charlotte meets Lord David Marchston, suddenly a little courtship doesn’t sound so bad after all.
David will be the first to admit he’s made some mistakes. But when he gets yanked from his post by his superiors, he is ordered to do the unthinkable to win back his position: woo his commander’s niece. If David wants his life back, he must use his skills as a negotiator to persuade society that Charlotte is a woman worth pursuing, despite her rather unusual “flair” for color. But David does such a terrific job that he develops an unexpected problem, one that violates both his rakish mentality and his marching orders: He’s starting to fall in love.
Received in ebook format from Random House (Loveswept) via netgalley
Charlotte is not the most beautiful of women, especially when compared to her more petite and stunning friends, and she has another unfortunate feature – she speaks her mind and is far from meek and mild. She is also, unfortunately if you listen to her mother, unmarried and on her third season, which is threatened to be her last.
David Marchston is back in England after a 10 year absence, and his nickname of “Mr Gorgeous” does him no favours. Before he can return to his preferred India, he is ordered to woo Charlotte. He dreads it at first but comes to realise that he’s falling in love with her.
Meanwhile, Charlotte is writing a fashion column which threatens to cause as big a scandal as if people find out just what she and David are doing whilst alone in front of the fire…….
Both characters are slightly damaged emotionally, with Charlotte the butt of many a joke (“The Abomination” being her nickname) and being bullied into a likely marriage with a unattractive man should she not secure an alternate marriage proposal during her last season. David is torn too, living in a place he doesn’t want to be, doing the only thing that will get him where he wants to be, and with a reputation still following him around – literally.
The short columns written by Charlotte at the beginning of each chapter are amusing and show a woman becoming more self assured and daring as her time with David progresses.
There are scenes of a more adult nature in this book, which are well done, but should come with a little bit of a warning! Those who like their historical romances to be on the more chaste side of things will do well to avoid this one.
The section where David is about to propose but she runs out on him seemed a little forced and resolved a little too quickly and implied the need to force the “overcome obstacles and misunderstandings in order to prove how much they love each other” chapter, but the book isnt really the worse for all that