Release Date: October 23, 2017 (for the box set, each novella is already available)
What a great anthology!
A Kiss for Miss Kingsley – 4 stars
Olivia and Allen have a history, three years ago they were in love and wanted to marry, but before Allen could ask for her hand, her father decided to move the family to the Caribbean. Allen is frantic and asks Olivia to run away with him, when she refuses, he tells her that it is over between them.
Olivia was heartbroken, she left for the Caribbean a few days later and didn’t return for three years. Upon her return, her Aunt persuades her to attend a ball being given by Allen’s parents. Unsure but unable to deny that she wants to see him again, Olivia attends. Allen is looking for a wife, he knows know that he was unfair to Olivia, but she is gone and he must do his duty. He attends the ball with the intent of finding a bride and is stunned when Olivia is announced. When he asks for a dance, they both know that their feelings are still strong, but after so much time, can they find what they once shared?
Bride of Falcon – 4 stars
Ivonne (Allen’s sister) aka Ivy and Chancy Faulkenhurst aka Falcon have known each other for years, he is one of her brother’s oldest friends and the first man Ivy ever loved. Falcon left for India 6 years ago, hoping to make his fortune and be able to ask for Ivy’s hand. But things did not work out for him, first he invested his savings with a man and never heard from him again and then was injured and has returned to England with no money and no prospects. He accepted Allen’s invitation to attend the ball and hopes to get a glimpse of the woman he loves before he goes home. But uncomfortable in the crowd, he escapes to the garden, where he overhears Ivy being accosted by a suitor. When she tells the man she will never marry him and he demands to know why, Falcon steps forward and tells him that she was already promised to someone. Ivy is overjoyed to see Falcon, even though he broke her young heart when he left and he never replied to her letters. These two dance around each other and there are some misunderstandings and assumptions that almost keep them from their HEA.
Her Scandalous Wish – 5 stars
When I first started this book, I didn’t think I would accept whatever reason Ms. Cameron came up with for keeping these two apart for so long – but I was wrong! Philomena and Branford were in love, but 6 years ago, he believed she perished in a fire and he was heartbroken. Over the years he has become a rake, but no woman has touched his heart and he knows that no one ever will. Newly returned for the Caribbean and still adjusting to the title he never expected to inherit, he attends a ball with his sister and is shocked to find out that Philomena is still alive. Philomena is trying to grant her brother’s wish to marry before he dies, she spies Bradford and slips out on the terrace to avoid him, she was badly burned in the fire that killed her parents and almost died herself, but what hurt the most was Branford’s desertion. When the two share a kiss and are caught by her brother, he demands the Branford either meets him for a duel or marries his sister. Unwilling to fight, he offers for Philomena, who begs her brother to retract his challenge. When her brother collapses, she frantically agrees to marry. These two must get to know each other again and there will be many obstacles in the road to their HEA – but what an amazing journey it is!!
To Tame a Scoundrel’s Heart – 5 stars
This was my favorite book in the set – I loved Nic and Katrina! Nic was raised to believe he was the bastard son of a duke and he has made his living as a privateer. But now he has unexpectedly inherited a dukedom and two young half-sisters. He knows he needs to marry a woman who can take care of the duchy and his sisters, so he can return to the sea. When he meets Katrina, he thinks she will be perfect for the job, until he finds out that she is all but betrothed. Unwilling to let her go, he enlists her help in finding a bride. Katrina has been infatuated with Nic for years, but she has put that behind her and is looking forward to marrying her Major. Problem is, she can’t quite get her heart to believe that Richard is the man she wants. The more time she spends with Nic, the more confused she becomes. For his part, Nic has decided that he cannot have Katrina, because she deserves a man that will love her and will not leave her for the sea, but he is not convinced that Richard is that man. When Richard returns, Katrina finally realizes that Nic is the man she loves. Faced with the knowledge that he might lose her, Nic admits that he loves her more than he loves the sea and sets out to win her heart. SIGH….I am a little bit in love with Nic.
The Wallflower’s Wicked Wager – 5 stars
Shona is a peeress in her own right and is being pursued for her title and fortune, she has not had an easy life and longs to be loved for herself. While eluding a grasping fortune hunter, she trips and falls in the lake. Morgan Le Draco is a war hero but since the accident that cost him his eye and left him scarred, he is lost, estranged from his father and without a fortune or prospects, he has no idea what he will do. When a young woman falls in the lake, he doesn’t hesitate to save her. When they finally reach the shore, he expects her to be horrified by his appearance, but is delighted when she doesn’t seem bothered by his scars. Shona and Morgan have an instant attraction. When they make their way back to the house party, Shonna is confronted by a nasty woman and makes a wager with the woman – that by weeks end, she will have a kiss from the most handsome man at the party and she means Morgan. These two share a mutual dislike for their parents and both have painful pasts, as they spend time together, their bond and friendship only get stronger. But there are others determined to keep them apart and their doubts in themselves and each other, almost cost them the love of a lifetime.
This was a really wonderful anthology, I had read some of the stories before when they were first released as novellas, but I enjoyed reading them altogether even more! The writing is great and each story is well paced and well done. While the novellas are not steamy, the love scenes are appropriate to each story and I didn’t mind the lack of steamier scenes. I would happily recommend this boxed set!