Ok this is another book where you need to suspend belief a bit… As in they fall in love in seven days kind of suspended belief.
So the setup is Sidonie, our heroine, has taken the place of her sister in order to satisfy a gambling debt. This seven-day period is assumed to be one of sex, sex and more sex at the whims of our hero. She is a spinster for the time period and also a virgin who agrees to this scheme because she doesn’t want her sister hurt again by her husband. She’s frightened both by the house and the lord of the household but wiling to do this to save her sister. Now… I don’t like her sister… truly in the book you have no love lost for this worthless piece of trash but family is family and here we are…. Sidonie is a good person and while I do feel that the pairing ultimately would work I really wish we had more time with them together rather than the forced fast story. She’s a fairly strong personality even when wavering and I found that i liked her but at the same time got a little frustrated with her just defaulting to her sister even though she knew the secret she held could help our hero.
And now on to my favorite part…
Our lusty, growly, brooding hero… Jonas. My heart was drawn to him for many reasons none of which included his outer scar. He’s a wounded man both in spirit and physically but the spirit is what drew me in like it did Sidonie. Blood and birthright mean everything in this time period so to be labeled a bastard is horrifying. The worst is in his heart he knows his parents were married but to his father’s heartbreak there is no proof. He’s ostracized and treated poorly by society and the rest of the family which makes him a hard, bitter man out for revenge. He thinks he has the perfect chance when Roberta is in debt to him. You see her husband is his cousin to whom all the entitlements passed when his parentage was called in to question. He thinks having her and cuckolding the cousin will satisfy a portion of his need for revenge but Sidonie thwarts those plans. Now… you want to not like him but he treats her with such care it was wonderful to see. I think that is why I felt a bit cheated by the way they were rushed but I still loved every moment we got to see him.
If you have some time take a chance on this one… I don’t think you’ll be sorry but I do understand why some reviewers had an issue with the book. Personally I’d love to see more of this pair just so I can see more of Jonas finally getting everything he deserved.
Special thanks to NetGalley.com and Grand Central Publishing/Forever for letting me read this in exchange for my honest review.