THE VISCOUNT RISKS IT ALL – Erin Knightley
A Prelude to a Kiss Novel – Book 4
Gavin Stark knew he loved his good friend Felicity. They had played together on their families' adjacent estate for years. At nineteen, he had planned to ask her to marry him on the night of a ball, telling her he had something special to tell her, but she had something special to tell him, too. He let her go first. Her news shocked him. She was in love and about to get married.
Ten years later Felicity Danby is a widow. Her daughter, Isabella, was born after her father's death. It's been eighteen months, and she decides to join Hugh, her husband Ian's brother, now the Earl of Cadgwith, and his wife Charity in Bath for the Summer Festival. Thoughts of Bath bring back fond childhood memories of Gavin Stark, now Viscount Derington.
No one is more surprised than Gavin when Felicity walks into his soiree with the Earl of Cadgwith and his wife Charity. Gavin has never married, although he has thought about it. As he approaches thirty, his mother is increasingly insistent he provide grandchildren. He definitely doesn't want to make himself as vulnerable as he had been with Felicity. She broke his heart, but to reject their friendship now is something he cannot do.
Both Charity and Gavin have much work to accomplish in regaining their stature as friends, let alone anything closer, which is part of the charm of this story's journey. Their relationship challenges are not only just external gestures of renewing an old friendship and deciding if they are willing to change their present life styles, but also internal, in determining how they see themselves and each other, and what they would risk for a different future. Other characters from the previous volumes, now happily married, appear, but it is definitely a standalone story.