Tracy’s rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Series: Isle of Synne, #1
Release Date: June 30, 2020
To say that Miss Lenora Hartley has been unlucky in love would be an understatement, she has been engaged three times and is still unwed! After being jilted at the altar by groom number three, she decides to escape London and her father’s attempts to find her another suitor. She goes with her dearest friend Margery Kitteridge to the Isle of Synne to visit Margery’s grandmother, Viscountess Tesh. But Synne may not offer the respite she is seeking, as it stirs up memories of her first betrothed, who tragically died and with those memories comes guilt for her part in his death.
Finally back in England after making his fortune in America, Peter Ashford has waited thirteen years for this day, the day when he repays a debt and begins to enact his plan for vengeance against those he believes wronged him and caused the death of his mother. But Lady Tesh refuses his money and insists that he honor a promise he made to his dying mother – a promise to stay with Lady Tesh for a month. He refuses and while rushing out, almost plows over Lenora. He returns to the inn and relays what transpired to his good friend and business partner Quincy Nesbitt. Quincy convinces him to stay and honor the promise.
Peter and Quincy return to Lady Tesh’s and Peter bargains with her – he will stay and will attend dinners, balls and escort her – much to his annoyance. But on the bright side, he learns the lovely woman he ran into earlier – the one he hasn’t stopped thinking of, is also staying with Lady Tesh, along with his cousin, Margery. There is no denying the attraction between Peter and Lenora, but Peter won’t let anything in the way of his vengeance. Peter is the heir to the Duke of Dane, the man he holds responsible for his mother’s death. He has sworn that he will never marry and that title will die him and that he will destroy everything the Duke held dear. Lenora has her own issues to deal with including the new fiancé that her father has sent, with the clear message: accept her father’s choice or be disowned!
I thought the story was well written, but it did drag a bit and I found Peter’s single-mindedness to be a little annoying – but honestly, the vengeance trope is not my favorite as it never seems to make sense to me. I did like that this story took place outside of London and that there was a local legend woven in to the story. The book has a lot of emotion, vengeance, wonderful secondary characters, slightly warm love scenes, a bit of twist at the end and finally HEA. This was the first book in a new series and it looks like Quincy is next up, I really loved Quincy in this book so I am looking forward to his story!
*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC that was provided to me by the publisher. *