Barbara’s Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Series: The Sutherland Sisters #3
Publication Date: 11/14/17
A delightfully entertaining holiday read. It is full of sweet love and redemption. While this book doesn’t feature any of the Sutherland’s, it does feature one of the characters we met in the last book, Lady Charlotte’s First Love. I liked Ethan in that book even though he was somewhat presented as a bad boy. You knew he had a good soul because of the way he stood up for Lady Charlotte. I was so glad to visit with him again in this book and learn his story.
You just have to like and smile at Ethan Fortesque, Earl of Devon, from the beginning. It is almost Christmas, he’s in his cups and he’s on his way from London to his country seat, Cleves Court in Cornwall. He’s thinking about all of the bad things that have happened in his life and especially about his wastrel father and he has this conversation with himself. “Too much . . . . earling? Earlishness . . . ? Lordshippery … .?” You can tell he has a good sense of humor.
Ethan had vowed never to set foot in Cleves Court again. He wanted to let it molder into the ground, to put it and everything in it from his mind forever. He thought his father had closed it up two years ago just before he died, but has just recently learned that it had been left it up and running. Ethan doesn’t care that it is almost Christmas – he wants it closed and closed now!
He’s tired and cold as he approaches his childhood home. He expects to find his old housekeeper and maybe one or two other servants in residence. Imagine his surprise when he arrives to a brightly lit home with carriages in front and the sound of Christmas carols wafting out to him. Well, he’ll put a stop to that right away – how dare they have a party in his house, without his permission.
Theodosia (Thea) Sheridan, has loved Ethan since they were children. She wants, above all else, to help him learn to deal with his pain and to learn that he cannot run from it. She knows that closing Cleves Court won’t quiet his demons – they’ll follow him wherever he goes if he doesn’t deal with them and make peace with them. Her challenge is to get him to stay at Cleves Court long enough to realize that and to make his peace.
You’ll meet three delightful imps in this story – Henry and George who are ten-year-old twins and Martha their six-year-old sister. They are orphans who are staying at Cleves Court while the orphanage is being repaired. These three have impishness and mischievousness fine-tuned to an art. Maybe they are just what Ethan needs to push him along the way to deal with his ghosts.
I hope you’ll give this lovely book a read. It is so much lighter and sweeter than the other two books, Lady Eleanor’s Seventh Suitor and Lady Charlotte’s First Love, in the series. It truly is a lovely holiday read.
“I requested and received this e-book at no cost to me and volunteered to read it; my review is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.”