Series: Conundrums of the Misses Culpepper, #4
Release Date: April 14, 2018
The Culpeppers have knack for trouble, so it should come as no surprise when Blaike and her twin sister Blaire find themselves stranded and penniless at the docks in France after fleeing a scandal at their school in Geneva. When a stranger introduces himself as Capt. Landon Abraham and offers to assist them, the agree but feel uneasy. When they learn that the ship they are supposed to take to England has no record of a booking for them, Landon says he will take them, they decline, but he insists.
Oliver Whitehouse is upset, merchants are refusing to ship their cargo with him and someone is spreading lies about him. He is sure the villain is Abraham, the scum who killed his family and burned their home/office to the ground, leaving him homeless. Olivier is the illegitimate & acknowledged son of George Talbot, Viscount Willoughby. Payment is due on his ship and the lost cargo could mean disaster for him, but he refuses to go to his father for help. He is wondering what he will do when he sees the last woman he ever expected to see again – Blaike Culpepper!
When Olivier intervenes to save the girls from the dastard Abraham, his reward is being shot! His men manage to get Oliver and the girls back to his ship, where Blaike insists on tending him. She doesn’t answer his questions about why she was in Lyons, but instead turns the conversation to her family. When Oliver falls asleep, Blaike crawls in the bunk with him, thinking he is asleep. She wonders out loud how she is going to explain leaving Geneva and to her surprise, Oliver asks why she left. Blaike spills the entire sordid tale and Oliver comforts her. He in turn tells her his suspicions about Abraham. These two have always had a connection, one that Blaike would like to explore, but Oliver doesn’t feel that the bastard son of a Viscount is good enough for her.
The chemistry between them is hot and after a harrowing and dangerous journey back to England, they part ways. Oliver never plans to see her again – he loves her, but is steadfast in his belief that they can’t be together leaving Blaike heartbroken.
But fate is not done with our lovers just yet, they will both have to confront their pasts, deal with their families and fight for their love before they can have their HEA.
This is a quick read, it is well written, flows nicely, has some warm love scenes, a foul mouthed cockatoo, cameos from the other Culpeppers, really nasty villains, secrets, surprises, shocking revelations and finally a very sweet and satisfying ending.
This is the fourth book in the series and while it could be read as a stand alone title, you will enjoy it much more if you read the series in order.
*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC that was provided to me by the author*