I’m so excited for this book, y’all. As you know, I’m a super Vivienne Lorret fangirl. From her Wallflower Wedding series to Lord Everhart and Mr. Danvers, I can’t seem to get enough of her heartfelt historical romance. I’m delighted to be a stop on the Tasty Virtual Book tour for the final installment in The Rakes of Fallow Hall trilogy, The Maddening Lord Montwood. Read on for a review, excerpt, and giveaway.
My love for the rakes of Fallow Hall knows no bounds. You’ve read me gush about Lord Everhart and swoon over Mr. Danvers, so you no doubt know the set up: In regency-era Real World style, this is the true story of three rakes who choose to live in a house together. Their lives might not be taped, and because they are gentleman they are always polite, but the romantic drama is real.
Here’s the story in a nutshell: Lord Lucan Montwood is on the cusp of winning a ten thousand pound wager against his housemates. He’s the last man left unmarried, and if can remain so for the next six months he’ll have the money needed to finally free himself of his oppressive debt. The problem: an intriguing bespectacled spinster named Frances Thorne. After losing her job and home in one terrible afternoon, Frances is grateful to take on a new position that appears at just the right time (almost too conveniently so). But Lucan fears that she is walking into a trap and is compelled to do anything he can to protect her.
For those of you who have read your way through books one and two in the series, like me, you’re no doubt dying to find out how Lucan finds love. His eerily calm facade is finally broken by a deep concern and attraction to Frances, who he’s known since childhood. Without giving too much of the plot away, their lives are forever entangled by Lucan’s abusive fathers’ accusation of treason against Frances’ father, his former land steward. This event forever altered Lucan’s life, and is ultimately what reunites him with Frances in adulthood.
Theirs is a compelling pairing. Frances is a woman with responsibilities that weigh heavily and necessitate a sensible approach to life. It’s great fun to read her physical attraction to Lucan overpower her typically respectable and restrained demeanor, and in turn read Lucan’s reluctant surrender of his heart. Their dialogue is a continuous exchange of flirtatious insults and innuendo (see the excerpt for a great example), with Lucan trying his hardest to ruffle Frances’ calm countenance. My favorite moments are when his teasing backfires and he finds himself unwittingly moved and aroused by Frances’ frank responses. She’s the perfect foil for his practiced cool, forcing him to confront his feelings head on.
If you like a bit of mystery with your romance, there’s a compelling one woven into the relationship between Lucan, Frances, and her new employer Lord Whitelock. If, like me, you could take or leave a whodunnit story, rest assured that it’s just a vehicle for the romance, and does not detract from the Lucan-Frances storyline. In addition to Montwood’s romantic comeuppance you’ll find cameos from your favorite Fallow Hall rakes and wives, whose shameless efforts at matchmaking will put a smile on your face.
Enjoy this wonderful conclusion to a fantastic trilogy!
Excerpt (for all the girls who wear glasses)
“While I admire the stern workday countenance you employ to set an example for others, using a little smile in the market could do wonders for your basket.”
He was talking about flirting. Flirting was one thing Frances never did. She’d seen how a friendly smile could give a man the wrong ideas. In her opinion, it was far better to know the character of the man beforehand. “I suppose you would have me remove my spectacles and bat my lashes as well.”
Lucan turned to face her. Slowly, he revealed a grin that only hinted at the dimple lurking there. It hinted at other things too. Scandalous things. She was certain of it because a ripple of desire stirred inside of her.
“No, Miss Thorne, always wear your spectacles.” He leaned forward, the brim of his hat close to hers. “They act like a veil, making a man wonder about the eyes behind them. A man starts to imagine being the one who’ll steam up your lenses.”
About Vivienne Lorret
USA Today bestselling author VIVIENNE LORRET loves romance novels, her pink laptop, her husband, and her two sons (not necessarily in that order … but there are days). Transforming copious amounts of tea into words, she is proud to be an Avon Impulse author of works including: “Tempting Mr. Weatherstone”, The Wallflower Wedding Series, and the Rakes of Fallow Hall series.
Intrigued by The Rakes of Fallow Hall yet? (If the answer is no, I clearly haven’t done my job.) Enter this Rafflecopter giveaway to win a digital bundle of the first two books in the series, The Elusive Lord Everhart and The Devilish Mr. Danvers.
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