Tracy’s rating: 4 of 5 stars
Series: The Spirited Storms, #5
Release Date: February 18, 2020
Nothing seems to be working out for Ashton Grell, the newly minted Marquess of Wingate, not only has he lost his father, uncle and aunt in a horrific murder-suicide, but he has also been denied the woman he longs to court, learned his estate is nearly bankrupt and if that wasn’t enough, it now appears that the Duke of Danby wants to stick his match-making nose into Ashton’s business!! So to escape the duke’s interference and with the hope that the plantation he didn’t know his father owned can solve his money problems, Ashton sets sail for Barbados.
Lady Hannah Storm has been summoned to Danby Castle by her great-uncle Danby. Hannah is terrified that the duke has found a match for her, but soon learns that he wants her to act as companion and accompany his friend Lady Whitley to Barbados. Once she is there he suggests she stay with her brother for the holidays and he promises to help her find a match when she returns in the spring, but he makes it clear that she is not to set her sights on Wingate. Hannah will go to Barbados and looks forward to seeing her brothers and sister-in-laws, but she is not happy being told to go or to be warned away from Ashton. Ashton is the only man she has ever really been interested in and she thought he returned her regard, but other than a few chance meetings, he made no attempt to court her, much to her disappointment.
Ashton’s arrival in Barbados brings mixed feelings, he is dismayed to learn that the plantation is not habitable, disgusted to learn that his father has slaves but he is overjoyed to learn that Hannah is visiting her brothers without her mother, who discouraged Ashton’s interest in Hannah the previous season. But even though Ashton knows he is not in a position to court her now, he looks forward to getting to know her better and hopefully finding a way out of his financial mess so he can plan for a future with her.
But just when it seems like everything will work out for our lovers, Ashton learns that his father made a deal with a local businessman that could not only ruin Ashton financially, but destroy any hope of a marriage with Hannah. Ashton will have to choose between keeping his honor and following his heart and even when that choice is made, HEA may not be in the stars for them.
I thought this was a very well-written and interesting story. It flowed nicely, had great characters, an exotic locale, some jaw-dropping revelations, a lot of twists and turns, a couple sweet kisses and a very, very, very hard-won HEA. This is the fifth book in the series, but it can easily be read as a stand-alone, but if you have read the other books you will be delighted to visit will some of the previous characters! I enjoyed this story and would be happy to recommend it.
*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC that was provided to me.*