IN LOVE WITH A WICKED MAN – Liz Carlyle
Bellecombe Castle, Somerset, England, 1850
The d'Allenay barony is an ancient one; If no male heir exists, the title and estates may devolve upon a female. The deaths of Kate's father and brother made her a baroness in her own right…Lady d'Allenay of Bellecombe Castle. Kate manages everything and is a good big sister to her beautiful younger sister Nancy. Their mother, Aur é lie, lives in London.
And how did Lord Edward Quartermaine, son of a duke, get to be looked down upon as the proprietor of an upscale gambling house? That's because when the boy was ten, the duke learned his wife had cheated on him and that the boy was the natural son of an unsavory gaming hell owner. The duke gave him to the man. With an unusually good memory and an uncanny head for numbers, Ned survived.
So how did this son of the streets and the country Lady come to meet? Ned had come to Somerset to see a house he'd received in payment of a large debt. He became lost on a back road just when Kate jumped her horse over the hedge. Ned's quick maneuvers saved them from colliding, but he was thrown from his steed, hit his head, and was knocked unconscious. Kate took him home with her and called for a doctor. When Ned finally awoke, he had no memory of the incident, his past, even his name. Now he can't even add two and two. By his clothes and speech, Kate and her household took him for a gentleman and came to like him. Strangely, he does not feel out of place at Bellecombe.
Two people could hardly be more different. Kate dresses plainly and is conscientious and deals fairly with servants, tenant farmers, and villagers. Ned—at least the pre-concussion Ned—is handsome, charming and perhaps a bit ruthless…and very much a lady's man.
IN LOVE WITH A WICKED MAN is rich in plot and characters; one lively one of whom is the girls' Mother who comes to visit bringing a gaggle of friends from London. Will anyone know who Ned is? What trouble will they cause? There is a second romance looming between Nancy and a young man. How will that work out? These questions barely touch on the complications that arise. It's very easy to like and commiserate with our hero and heroine, but not easy to foresee how things will work out. But if anyone can be trusted to leave readers smiling, it's Liz Carlyle. This novel and her wonderful backlist of titles are well worth any romance lover's attention.