Forbidden Stowaway by Arabella Sheen
Tracy’s rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Series: Unknown, but presumably more installments will follow
Release Date: April 18, 2023
When word reaches her that her brother’s ship was captured and her brother, Joseph is missing, Olivia Trevillion is beside herself with worry. With no answers or rescue efforts forthcoming, she takes matters into her own hands, especially since her brother’s wife, Juliette is expecting their first child and needs him. She seeks out Joseph’s friend Captain Luke Crowe for help, but when she finds him, he doesn’t remember her and is dismissive. She returns home downhearted but isn’t ready to give up. And when Luke shows up at their house the next day to apologize, she tries to get him to agree to take her with him when his ship leaves for America – he refuses, he is leaving the next day and he isn’t willing to risk her reputation.
Luke is surprised to realize the lovely woman who tracked him down in the tavern was Joseph’s sister, she has changed since he last saw her. He feels bad about turning her down, but clearly, she is a temptation he wouldn’t be able to resist, and despite her brave words about not caring about her reputation, Luke is a gentleman and wouldn’t be able to see her ruined when there is no guarantee they would even be able to find Joseph. He tells her NO and believes that is the end of it, but when he finally makes his way to his cabin after his ship is well out to sea, he is stunned to find a sleeping Olivia in his bed. At that moment everything changes for Luke, he insists that she marry him and when she refuses, he introduces her to the crew as his wife, now he just has to convince her that marriage to him is more than just a duty.
This was a very short novella and ends without any resolution, not exactly a cliffhanger, but not a HEA either. I have to assume that there will be future installments that will ultimately end with a HEA, but I was led to believe that this story did end with their HEA. Anyway, it was a very quick, enjoyable, steamy read – but as the story takes place over just a few days and in that time there are a lot of conflicting statements made, I am not really sure how either one felt about the other, except they share a mutual attraction and passion is not a problem for them. I am sure it will all sort itself out and I will definitely read any additional installments that come out!
*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.*