Tracy’s rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Series: Sinful Wallflowers, #3
Release Date: December 28, 2021
Devlin Niall Byrne and Lady Ophelia Darby met years ago when they were children and he saved her from drowning and then kept her safe for days before they were found. Back then they were simply Niall and Fifi – and Niall fell into love with her and swore to always keep her safe and asked her to marry him – then 8-year-old Ophelia agreed, not realizing the difference in their stations would keep them apart. When she was returned to her parents, her father made it very clear to Niall that he would never be good enough for Ophelia and sent him on his way. But Niall knew that from that moment on, he would do whatever was necessary to become worthy of his Fifi.
Many years later Devlin Byrne is a very rich man who has just about given up trying to find Fifi when fate steps in and brings these two together again. Not a day has gone by that Devlin hasn’t thought about his Fifi, but Ophelia can’t say the same – of course, she remembers the boy who saved her, but their promises were not burned into her mind the way they were for him. Ophelia’s life has been good, but recently she has learned much of what she believed was a lie – her father believing he was on his death bed revealed that Ophelia was not his wife’s child, but rather the product of a dalliance he had when he first married. But this isn’t the only secret her father has kept from her. But Ophelia becomes consumed with learning all she can about her birth mother, Ophelia ventures into the darker side of London and finds Devlin, but doesn’t recognize him as Niall right away – that comes later when he makes her an offer she can’t refuse.
They spend more and more time together, but Ophelia is aware that Devlin will never be accepted by the ton and tells herself that this happiness is just temporary, that she can’t let her heart be engaged and at the same time, Devlin is denying any stronger feelings for Fifi, he tries to convince everyone she is just an itch to be scratched and soon they will part ways. But what is between them is too strong to deny and when they are betrayed, choices will have to be made.
This was a well-written, nicely paced story and I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED it. Devlin is a nearly perfect hero and Ophelia is his perfect match. The book has a bit of everything, secrets, lies, betrayal, forbidden love, steamy love scenes, and finally an ending that will bring a tear to your eye and a smile to your face. This is the third book in the series, but it can easily be read as a standalone title. I enjoyed this book and would enthusiastically recommend this title to anyone!
*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC that I requested and was provided to me by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.*