Curled Up with an Earl by Amy Rose Bennett
Tracy’s rating: 5 of 5 stars
Series: The Byronic Book Club, #2
Release Date: February 7, 2023
At Twenty-Eight, Miss Lucinda “Lucy” Bertram is content with her life, she is a gifted botanist who acts as a research assistant to her father but she longs to travel and be recognized for her accomplishments, rather than be hidden by her father’s shadow. She is sure that marriage is not in her future, even if her dear friend Artemis has recently married and is now touting marital bliss. She is too busy to explore the possibility and has bigger things to worry about, such as her brother Monty’s disappearance and her father’s refusal to discuss him, not to mention their abysmal finances, so finding a husband is the last thing on her mind, especially when she has never met a man that even remotely tempted her. But when her gig gets stuck in the mud and her attempts to free it, land her in the mud as well, a stranger with blue eyes and a Scottish brogue takes charge and might just be the man to change her mind about men and marriage.
William “Will” Lockhart, the Earl of Kyle is on a mission for Scotland Yard, a member of the Linnean Society was poisoned and Lucy’s father, Sir Oswald, an expert in botanical poisons is their prime suspect. Will comes to Fleetwood Hall disguised as a groom, he expects this to be a simple case, he will investigate Sir Oswald and find proof that he is the killer, but he didn’t count on his reaction to Lucy. He met her months ago while posing as an American industrialist and was attracted to her, but now that he has gotten to know her, he will do whatever is necessary to keep her, especially when her father begins to pressure her to marry one of his fellow society members. She asks for his help in finding her brother, who she is sure will side with her against the marriage. But to keep Lucy, Will will have to reveal his true identity and hope she can forgive his deception and change her mind about marriage, but first, he has a killer to catch.
OMG – It is only February and I think I may have read the best book of the year already – Seriously. I loved this book so much, it was well-written, nicely paced, and was just such a delight to read. Lucy and Will are extremely likable and their relationship progressed at a believable pace, the attraction was immediate, but their love and their physical relationship developed a bit slower and felt stronger thanks to that wait. This book has a bit of everything; secrets, poison, spies, murder, steamy love scenes, cameos with the other members of the Byronic Book Club, a villain that is truly insane, blackmail, and finally a sigh-worthy ending with one of the best declaration scenes I have ever read, as well as an epilogue. This is the second book in the series, but could easily be read as a standalone title. I highly recommend this title, in my opinion, this book is a must-read and definitely a keeper that I plan to re-read many times. Think I am being overly gushing? Read the book and you will see why!
*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.*