Cynical and broken-hearted, Leticia banishes dreams of marriage. When her childhood friend, Tristan, wagers he can find her the perfect husband, she hopes the challenge will coax him to forgo his devil-may-care lifestyle. Meanwhile, Leticia throws herself into forming her charity school but meets opposition—even from the people she’s helping.
Guilt-ridden that his past mistakes robbed Leticia of true love, Tristan vows to set it right, but match-making has its pitfalls for a repentant scoundrel. When he finds two ‘perfect’ gentlemen to court her, he discovers his own deep feelings for the lady.
Though Tristan seems to reform, Leticia doesn’t dare risk heartbreak with a notorious rake. When opposition for the school takes a deadly turn, can Tristan protect her from a madman bent on destroying their dreams and their lives?
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Donna Hatch is the author of the best-selling “Rogue Hearts Series,” and a winner of writing awards such as The Golden Quill and the International Digital Award. A hopeless romantic and adventurer at heart, she discovered her writing passion at the tender age of 8 and has been listening to those voices ever since. She has become a sought-after workshop presenter, and also juggles freelance editing, multiple volunteer positions, and most of all, her six children (seven, counting her husband). A native of Arizona who recently transplanted to the Pacific Northwest, she and her husband of over twenty years are living proof that there really is a happily ever after.
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This was a delightful story. Still feeling the effects of losing the man she loved almost all her life, Richard, to Elizabeth who later became a good friend and partner in organizing a school for orphan girls, Leticia determines to remain a spinster. Richard’s brother, Tristan, who has lived a life typical of many of the well-to-do in the hedonistic Regency era, wagers he will find her a husband that meets her high standards before Christmas. She agrees to his efforts, mainly to encourage him to seek the company of a more responsible circle of associates.
The author does a great job of making the characters believable as they make their choices, face their challenges, and suffer the consequences of poor decisions. As Tristan seeks the perfect husband for Leticia, he is prompted to make change in himself. Soon there is a love triangle going as men court Leticia, and decisions are made regarding what really matters. The school Leticia and Elizabeth formed is threatened by those who resist change and do not favor allowing the poor to become educated so they may improve their chances of better supporting themselves. In some respects, this is a story of gaining self-awareness and redemption. There is enough action and suspense to keep the story interesting to the end.
The romance elements are sweet and the book has a satisfying ending. I can recommend it to those who love to read historical romance.
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