Her Lessons in Persuasion by Megan Frampton
Tracy’s rating: 5 of 5 stars
Series: School for Scoundrels, #1
Release Date: January 24, 2023
Barrister Bram Townsend is on his way to his monthly book club meeting with his friends, four fellow orphans from the Devenaugh Home for Destitute Boys, or as they like to call it, The School for Scoundrels. Bram is rehashing his interpretations of their latest book when he notices a woman standing on a parapet of the Blackfriars Bridge, thinking she means to harm herself, he immediately intervenes by grabbing the woman and pulling her down to safety – or so he assumes. But the lovely woman currently sprawled atop him had no qualms about setting him straight, she was in no danger, she was looking at the stars before he so rudely pulled her down. He apologizes for his mistake and insists on seeing her home, even though it will make him late, but it is the right thing to do and Bram always does the right thing! He hails a hackney after she fails to do so on her own, and they chat/argue on the way to her home, where she uses him to hide from her aunt and then shocks both of them by kissing him before running inside. Bram continues on his way, but is out of sorts and intrigued by his mystery woman. Something his friends pick up on right away and tease him mercilessly. He reminds himself that he doesn’t have time for distractions and needs to focus on his new goal of becoming a judge.
Lady Wilhelmina Bettesford can’t believe she kissed a stranger, a drop-dead gorgeous stranger, but still a stranger! She is never impetuous like that, nor is her head turned by a good-looking man. She reminds herself that she just needs to wait out another six months, at which time she will inherit the money left to her by her mother, and then she and her Aunt Flora can purchase a cottage where she can settle into spinsterhood and devote herself to her passion – astronomy. But her world is turned upside down when her father returns from their country estate with a huge surprise – he has fallen in love and married his new steward’s daughter, Alethea, an astonishingly beautiful woman, who is five years younger than Wilhelmina! A woman who is hellbent on seeing Wilhelmina married off as soon as possible, but who despite that is innately likable – much to Wilhelmina’s despair. Wilhelmina is sure she can hold out until her inheritance is in her control – but what she doesn’t count on is Alethea bidding on her mystery man at a fundraiser for the orphanage, or her idea to have Bram pretend to court Wilhelmina to drum up interest in her. She is mortified, but more than anything, she is thrilled to cross paths with him again. But despite the undeniable attraction that is between them, they make it clear that marriage is not an option for either of them and as long as there are no expectations (although kisses are acceptable), they will get along just fine and he will help her fend off any real suitors until she in control of her inheritance and she will help him meet the right people, which will help him in his quest to become a judge. Well, at least that was the plan…
This is a wonderful book, it is well written, nicely paced, and filled with amazing characters that you can’t help but root for! I LOVED this story and it is a perfect example of why I fell in love with Megan Frampton’s writing, it is filled with humor, as well as intelligent, thoughtful characters who are both likable and relatable. There is lots of witty banter, great secondary characters, hilarious inner monologues, believable character growth, Wilhelmina’s list of men she won’t marry, debates, steamyish love scenes, a surprising revelation, and finally a very endearing ending that paves the way for their HEA as well as an epilogue. This is the first book in a new series and it was so good that I can’t wait for the next book! I highly recommend this title, it is a fabulous story that was an absolute pleasure to read.
*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.*