My rating: 5 of 5 stars
4.5 Stars Rounded up to 5
Series: Spinster Heiresses #1
Publication Date: 12/26/17
Many kudos to Ms. Maxwell for dealing with some tough issues – and doing it superbly. Our heroine isn’t the normal skittish maiden. She has some excellent reasons for not wanting to marry and some real issues to overcome. Our hero has his own set of issues and you wonder how they are going to overcome them individually and together to finally reach that HEA they deserve. I do not enjoy dark books at all and I was fearful this one would be dark – but it wasn’t – it was wonderfully hopeful while still leaving you to wonder if they could overcome. However, it isn’t an easy read – definitely not a fluffy and light read. There were times when I wanted to turn both characters over my knee and spank them, but as you learn more about them and come to understand them, you begin to not only like, but respect them.
Leonie Charnock is a very flawed young lady who has no desire to marry. However, her parents want her to marry – and to marry into the aristocracy. Yes, she is literally for sale. That really is a sad commentary on the times, isn’t it? Her home is not a happy one. Her parents live totally separate lives and both ignore her. She has never known love and has no idea what love or happiness is. So, you can imagine how difficult it would be for her to recognize it if she found it. Then, throw in the horrendous thing that happened to her and you have the makings of a total disaster of a life. However, a little tipple now and then makes all the pain and loneliness a little easier to bear.
Roman Gilchrist is now, unexpectedly, the Earl of Rochdale. Sadly, he has inherited a debt-ridden estate and his man of business tells him the only way out is to marry an heiress – a very rich heiress. Roman is a romantic and always wanted to marry for love. His whole family has married for love and they are still in love – he wants that for himself. He soon realizes that the only way to take care of his family is to pay off the earldom’s debts and restore the family seat to a habitable condition. He also feels a deep responsibility for the tenants and others on the estate who depend on him. Therefore, he considers what his man of business has to say – and when the man of business gives him the name of the richest heiress – his mouth drops open. Leonie Charnock!
Roman and Leonie have a history from several years ago when her father worked in India for the East India Company and Roman was a soldier stationed there. I won’t tell you the story because that would be a spoiler – but I can tell you Roman never forgot Leonie. Sometimes that remembrance was not with fondness, but he never forgot her.
I absolutely loved the book, the characters, the writing – well – all of it. My only wish is that it could have been a tad longer so that we could have seen more of the friendship and interactions between the ‘Spinster Heiresses’. I would have also loved an epilogue a year or so out in the future so we could see Leonie and Roman with their bouncing baby AND also see her shocked parents visiting for the first time – shock at the changes in their daughter and how she and Roman are living.
“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.”