Grace Eversleigh & Jack Cavendish-Audley
I had a really good time reading this one, which, in all honesty, was surprising to me. After the eight Bridgerton novels which ranged from great to not-so-great with the majority being in the slightly-less-than-average range (two great and the rest, I don’t really recall), I expected this one to be equally as average.
Plus the real model (Ewa da Cruz) on the cover mildly freaks me out. (I said it before, but she looks like a raptor.)
To my great surprise, Ms. Quinn introduces a really unique storyline with intriguing characters.
Grace Eversleigh is the companion to the dowager Duchess of Wyndham, a very crusty, cranky, viciously mean and very proper old woman. She acts like she doesn’t have a heart… and it is speculated that she just might not be in the possession of one. But Grace hasn’t had a choice; when her parents passed away and her slimy cousin came to the possession of her home, she was given the option of either marrying the slimebag or dealing with the crusty dowager.
She chooses the dowager.
It is on the way home from a ball (not a wedding, thank the heavens) that their coach is pulled over by highway men – a really handsome (Grace thinks he’s handsome from the bottom half of his masked face) and witty highwayman. To her surprise, he kisses her. On the lips! (Oh, how scandalous!) And then the dowager recognizes – and insists – that the highwayman is her long-lost grandson… and quite possibly the next Duke of Wyndham. This is a problem given that the Duke of Wyndham already exists.
highwayman Jack Audley is brought to the Wyndham castle to solve the very fascinating mystery of who the real Duke of Wyndham is.
While Jack stays with Grace and the dowager duchess, he falls more and more for the real Grace – the witty and slightly sarcastic woman who keeps herself carefully masked for the dowager’s pleasure.
Now, I am normally not fond of fall-in-love-within-two-weeks type stories, but for some reason, I really liked this one. Ms. Quinn made it work and it clicked with me!
Reaaaaaad it. It’s gooooood.
I’m superbly excited for its sequel: Mr. Cavendish, I Presume. I want it now! Now! Now!