Earls Rush In by Jennifer Haymore
Tracy’s rating: 4 of 5 stars
Release Date: May 8, 2023
Life has not been easy for Miss Charlotte Chapman after the death of her beloved brother Chris, the Baron Chapman almost two years ago. Making matters worse, her uncle, the new baron has made it clear that Charlotte and her younger sister, Celine are no longer welcome in the house and must leave by the two-year anniversary of Chris’ passing in just a few months. Charlotte had always hoped for a love match and turned down suitors prior to her brother’s death, but now with the threat of homelessness looming, she can’t afford to hold on to that dream, and to save her sister, she is willing to accept the proposal of her only suitor, Reginald Bagshaw. But unbeknownst to her, her brother’s best friend, Finn will never let her marry Bagshaw, and he is willing to do whatever is necessary to ensure that doesn’t happen, which is exactly how she ended up stranded with him at an inn during a blizzard, pretending to be his wife.
Finneas “Finn” Jones, the Earl of Trevelyan has loved Charlotte for as long as he can remember but knows he is not worthy of her and that if she ever found out the truth of her brother’s death, she would hate him. But there is no way he will let her make the mistake of a lifetime by marrying Reginald Bagshaw. Without his usual thoughtful planning, Finn rushes to stop her by basically kidnapping her. He planned to take her to Scotland, but the weather has other plans and when they are forced to share a room as husband and wife, Finn will be tempted beyond measure. A temptation Charlotte would happily make a reality, but Finn hasn’t been totally honest with Charlotte and as much as he would love to spend his life with her by his side, he knows the truth will make her hate him and he will lose her completely. So he holds her at arm’s length and promises to find her a husband before her uncle’s deadline. But can he actually hand her over to another man or is there a way to keep her without telling her everything about her brother’s death?
This well-written, nicely-paced story was an enjoyable read even though parts of it were a bit hard to believe. I thought that Finn and Charlotte were both likable characters, who seemed to balance each other nicely, making them an easy couple to root for. The story did have a few things happening that I personally had a hard time believing, such as her uncle kicking them out without a penny; his own nieces who are young unmarried women, one of whom is just 16 years old. There were other things that were a bit far-fetched, but I don’t want to spoil the story and they were not earth-shattering, but did make me shake my head in disbelief. The book was filled with lies, secrets, wonderful secondary characters, steamyish love scenes, duels, a bit of heartache, and finally a HEA including an epilogue. This book is a standalone title ( I am hoping that the author decides to give some of the secondary characters their own HEA) so if you are new to this author, this is the perfect book to start with.
*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.*