Tracy’s rating: 4 of 5 stars
Series: Sins for All Seasons, #5
Release Date: March 31, 2020
Fancy Trewlove has known her entire life that her family wants the best for her and that they have all worked and sacrificed to give her a better life than they had. They dream of her marrying a lord and living a fancy life and for her part, Fancy has done everything to make that dream come true. She has agreed to have a season in London and is open to wedding a lord, but when she meets Matthew Sommersby in her book shop, she is no longer sure if she can fulfil her family’s wish.
Matthew Sommersby, the Earl of Rosemont needs to escape. He was tricked into a loveless marriage and was trapped for years. When his deceitful wife dies, she arranges to have a letter published a year after her demise – a letter full of lies that paints their marriage in very romantic light and has her begging the unmarried ladies of London to save him from a lonely, loveless existence. Terrified of being trapped again, Matthew bolts and hides out in a terrace house that is in the same neighborhood as Fancy’s shop. When he first meets Fancy, he is taken by her beauty and her kindness, but he is put off when he learns she has a copy of the letter his wife had published and leaves. They meet again at the pub and share a table, he begins to rethink his position, but when he learns her plans to marry a lord “by any means necessary” he assumes the worst and thinks she is just like his wife. He plans to stay far away from her, but can’t seem to walk away and he soon realizes how wrong he was about her.
The more time they spend together, the more they want, but she needs to fulfill the dream her family has for her and he still hasn’t been honest with her about who he really is. He tries to justify his deceit by telling himself that he wants to know that she loves him for himself and not his title. He is falling in love and is planning on telling her the truth – but when she is tricked by a lord and is compromised, he is quick to judge her and leaves without a backward glance. She is heartbroken when she learns he is gone and even more so when she learns who he is, but Fancy Trewlove is stronger than anyone gives her credit for and she will deal with this on her own terms!
This was a really good story, well written, fast paced and definitely a page turner! There is a lot to like about the book, such as wonderful characters, cameos of the Trewlove siblings, steamy love scenes, some surprises, a villain you don’t end up hating, a bad guy who gets his comeuppance and a HEA complete with an epilogue. However, I felt that Matthew was something of a hypocrite – he is so sure Fancy is deceitful and judges her harshly, but the whole time he is deceiving her about his identity and while he did score big points for grand gestures at the end – I personally think he didn’t come close to the serious groveling his actions called for and I felt that Fancy was way too quick to make excuses and forgive. Overall, it was an excellent story that I immensely enjoyed and I happily recommend. This is the fifth book in the series and while it could be read as a standalone title, do yourself a favor and read the series in order.
*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an uncorrected eARC that was provided to me by Edelweiss and the publisher.*