Series: Improper Princesses, #2
Release Date: 6/27/17
Jack, the new Marquess of Lendale is Lia Kincaid’s oldest and dearest friend. Lia is the granddaughter of the previous Marquess’ mistress and the illegitimate daughter of the Duke of York. She lives with her grandmother in Bluebell Cottage on Jack’s estate, Stonefell.
Since the passing of his uncle, Jack has made some shocking discoveries, the main one being the ghastly state of the estates finances. He has no idea how he is going to be able to support the estate, let alone Lia and her grandmother. Jack has loved Lia for as long as he can remember, in a strictly platonic way, but seeing her again after so long, he begins to realize that Lia is no longer a little girl and is horrified by the lust he feels for her.
When Lia realizes that Jack is not in a position to support them any longer, she hatches a plan. She will move to London with her mother and become an actress – the only problem with her plan is that she can’t sing, dance or act. Her grandmother suggests that she become a courtesan and Jack is adamantly opposed to this plan – he assures Lia that he will always take care of them.
Lia loves Jack and doesn’t want to burden him, so she slips off to London without telling him. Lia knows that Jack will have to marry a rich woman to save the estate and knows that she and her grandmother will only cause him grief. When she arrives in London, she realizes her options are limited and being a courtesan might be the only thing she is qualified to do.
When Jack finally tracks her down, Lia learns that she has an extended family that she never knew about. Chloe, Dominick, Charles and Gillian all welcome Lia with open arms and tell her they will help her find a husband, by launching her into society. Again Jack is not happy with this plan, Lia is his responsibility and he wants her to go back to Stonefell.
Lia is still certain that she will have to become a courtesan and as much as she appreciates her new family, she continues to pursue her original plan and ends up needing to be rescued more than once. After one such rescue, Jack and Lia share a passionate encounter and Jack declares that they will marry. Lia knows that marrying Jack will ruin him and refuses – but they make a bargain, three weeks to either come to an agreement or Jack will help her find a protector.
What could possibly go wrong?
This is a wonderful addition to the Improper Princesses series! It is well written, flows nicely, has a lot of twists and turns, some laugh out loud moments, some tense moments and some very thought provoking scenes, it is not as steamy as most of the other books in the series, but the love scenes are on the warmer side. This is the second book in the series, but it could be read as a stand alone – however to truly appreciate Gillian’s role in this book, you should read the previous book, My Fair Princess.
*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC provided to me by NetGalley and the publisher*