What do you do when you've been in love with someone since childhood but he marries someone else? Georgiana Wilde ends up marrying her other childhood playmate, Quinn's cousin Anthony. When he dies on their wedding night, Georgiana finds herself in an awkward position: her mother-in-law doubts
that their marriage was true and tries to eject Georgiana from the house. After all, the daughter of their steward ought not be raised up to the position of Marchioness.
A year later, when Quinn returns to Penrose, he finds the situation between Georgiana and his aunt still awkward.
Reacquainted with his childhood friend, he watches as she interacts with his daughter, the strangely-named Fairleigh. Fairleigh's mother has died,
making Quinn single again - and a very eligible Marquis.
Georgiana is surrounded by her friends, mostly widows but also Rosamunde, a Duchess. Some realize her feelings
for Quinn, others don't, but as Quinn and Georgiana become closer, they are separated by a misunderstanding (a fairly usual plot device in this kind of book). Can they get together? Will Quinn be able to put aside his aloof nature and feel again?
Although there isn't anything particularly new or different in this book, I did enjoy it. Georgiana
is a lively and self-assured woman who has coped with a disability for years. Quinn's smooth and urbane exterior hides his fear of those he loves abandoning him. The two work well together and the interactions between Quinn and the Duke of Helston
are great fun. The author has a pleasant writing style with some good local color for Cornwall and the lives of landowners.
I imagine that the fairly large cast of side characters are part of a series by this author, although this is the first book I have read by her. Overall a good read, but the hackneyed misunderstanding/man-can't-say-he-loves-someone plotline is perhaps getting a little bit tired.