Jan 14, 2013

Book Review: The Reluctant Countess

Regal, poised, and elegant, Sophie, Countess of Monmouth, is everything that a highborn lady should be. But Sophie is hiding a past that is far from royal. When Patrick, Earl of Coulter, realizes that her story doesn’t add up, he resolves to find out the truth of what Sophie and her sister-in-law are concealing. Although Sophie has every reason to avoid him, the handsome and charismatic Patrick awakens something wicked deep within her soul . . . a powerful need that Sophie must stifle in order to protect her place in society.

Despite Sophie’s humble background, the raven-haired beauty has won Patrick’s heart. But what Sophie needs now is an ally. Viscount Myles Dumbly, the disgruntled former heir of Monmouth, is determined to expose Sophie as a fraud to recapture his lost inheritance. Soon Patrick is drawn into a fight for both their lives. Somehow he must find a way not only to rescue Sophie from poverty once and for all, but to keep her in his arms forever.

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One of my favorite fairy tales has always been Cinderella and it is a theme that comes up quite frequently in romances.  Some of the attempts are ones not worth printing and others are more then satisfactory drawing the reader deep into the tale.  I am happy to say that THE RELUCTANT COUNTESS is one of the latter ones.  

I think what really caught me was the characters themselves.  Sophie is a warm and caring woman with secrets of her own that are starting to come out with possibly deadly consequences.  She is a woman that thinks of others first rather than herself.  Patrick is a fitting mate for her as he is the same working hard in parliament to improve the lot of the working class and children.  

The secondary characters also have a lot of, well for lack of a better word, character.  Letty, Sophie's sister-in-law, is very much enjoying being back in Society but she truly cares for Sophie.  Amelia, Sophie's best friend, is a very smart and opinionated young lady who cares more about where a person's heart is at then a person's past.  And Stephan, Patrick's best friend, is man who grew up surrounded by love and will do anything for those that he cares for.  These characters add a lot to the plotline. 

If I have any complaint about the book is that we are left hanging about the future of these secondary characters.  I am hoping that Ms. Vella will continue their stories in another book.  

I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical romantic suspense and  I rate THE RELUCTANT COUNTESS at 4.1.

*** I received this book at no charge from NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.  All opinions expressed within are my own.


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