Tracy’s rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Series: The Faking Stitch, #2
Release Date: December 21, 2022
Miss Geraldine “Gina” Bains is an expert at dissuading suitors right under her mother’s nose. Gina is months away from inheriting a fortune from her late father and has big plans to travel the world and those plans don’t include a husband! But despite her subtle tricks to ward off potential husbands, her mother is pushing her even harder to wed and has practically every minute of her day booked with instruction in womanly accomplishments, all of which she hates, save her embroidery “lessons”. So she is shocked when her brother’s best friend, Emmett Stanton sees through her ruse and blackmails her.
Emmett Stanton, son, and heir to the Earl of Hapthorpe had been dreading his promise to his best friend Marmaduke “Duke” Bains to dance with his younger sister, but when he sees Gina he is stunned and smitten. He claims his dance and soon figures out her scheme and thwarts her, much to her surprise, but it isn’t until she dances with someone else and runs out of the ballroom in tears that a plan forms and he gets her to agree to a temporary engagement. She agrees and they will act like the loving couple until she turns 21 on Christmas day, but makes it clear that there will be nothing more between them, especially no kissing, he agrees to only kiss her if she asks him to, to which she scoffs and makes it clear that will never happen and she will be breaking their “engagement” just as soon as she can, but Emmett has already decided that Gina is the perfect woman for him and plans to convince her to marry him, starting by tempting her into kissing him.
What a fun read, Gina and Emmett were such delightful characters that it was easy to root for their HEA. The book is filled with wonderful characters, secrets, lies, ulterior motives, spicy love scenes, a bit of heartache, compromises and finally a HEA complete with an epilogue (and an extended epilogue when you sign up for the author’s newsletter). This novella is part of the Faking Stitch series, but you can absolutely read them out of order. Note – This was previously published in the Twelve Lords for Yuletide anthology.
*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.*