The story opens with the hero's valet - I mean butler - waking him up to inform him that his aunt is on her way over and he should get the married woman in his bed out of the apartment ASAP. He regrets it even more when his aunt uses it to blackmail him into seducing his cousin's current lover away from him. The banker hero reluctantly agrees to host the cousin, the heroine, his mother and her nuisance dog at his castle in Umbria. There he will lure the heroine away from the cousin and his aunt won't go public with his affair with the married woman. Little does the hero know that the heroine is only window dressing for the cousin. Of course the hero doesn't know he's in love - he's just -um - interested. 5. The weak cousin keeps showing his disagreeable side - and he leaves the heroine stranded with the hero when his mother insists he go to the coast with her to recover and see friends.
The h has agreed to be a pretend fiancee to a mammas boy who wants him to marry a wealthy heiress. Mammas boy viperous mother blackmails the H, her nephew, into seducing the h or else shell spill the beans on his ONS with a total blithering idiot who happens to be married.
4.5 stars Alessio, an Italian count and banker, is blackmailed by his aunt into seducing Laura away from his cousin and the aunt's son, whom she wants to betroth to a friend's daughter. Luckily though these feelings and, therefore, the romance aren't overshadowed by the subplot which tends to happen in some of Craven's novels. Not much happens in terms of knockout action, but it's Alessio's and Laura's simple yet romantic interludesmeals, swimming lessons, piano recitals, etc.and their deep feelings for each other that drive the romance forward. LOL) * Plenty of hero's point of view * Villains who actually receive their comeuppances Nitpick * Hero's frequent evening wear of unbuttoned waistcoats without the jacket (They look awesome on hunks, but sloppy and unsexy if wearing unbuttoned.) Love to hate * Hero's relatives who were deliciously wicked Potential triggers/safety information (view spoiler)The story starts with Alessio waking up in bed the morning after a one-night stand with a married woman, but this is before he meets the heroine and there's no description of sex between them.
I want to be with you when our children are born, and to love you and protect you as long as we both live.
Alessio agrees to this crazy scheme, even though boring woman is really boring, because the husband doesnt deserve to find out about it That Way. Its a bit flimsy, but then so is Lauras story. The cousin is trying to get out of his mothers plans to marry him off to a nice rich Italian girl, so hes hired Laura to spend two weeks with him, to get his mother off his back. Laura spends her days reading Jane Austen and playing the piano. Laura has all this time to read and play the piano because the cousin gets a cold and stays in bed for a week. Plus, he does spend a lot of time avoiding her, which is perhaps him trying to be a bit noble about his whole deal with the auntie, and it does give Laura plenty of time to read and to yearn for him. This book had so many perfect things in it Italy, wolves, Jane Austen, fussy man colds, hot sex, terrible betrayals its my favourite Sara Craven so far.
Apart from the cracker beginning and a really sweet ending, its a slow sleepy read. But then hes also sweet, considerate and thoughtful, and he also reads and quotes Petrarch!
Okay the opening scene in this book is the H in bed with a MARRIED woman after a night of sex. I just have to block that scene from my mind because I hate seeing an H in bed with anyone but the h. Well, his evil Aunt shows up just as he is trying to get her to leave and blackmails him into seducing her son's new girlfriend away from him or else she will tell the 'lady's' husband. She of course is a good person and the son is a slimy toad.
Hero has a mistress who is married.
The story is based around Italian Count Alessio who after being caught being involved with a married woman by his vile Aunt is blackmailed by her to seduce her son's girlfriend in order to break them up. Said vile Aunt has arranged for her son to marry the daughter of one of her (rich) friends. Meanwhile, Laura has agreed to go on holiday to Italy with Paolo (the son!) and pretend to be involved with him in order for Paolo to get his mother of his back about the arranged marriage.
Anne Bushell was born on October 1938 in South Devon, England, just before World War II and grew up in a house crammed with books. Divorced twice, Annie lives in Somerset, South West England, and shares her home with a West Highland white terrier called Bertie Wooster.