Well, that was a pleasure. I was actually sad it was over.
Lord Jack Byron (brother to the Duke of Clybourn) loses a ridiculous sum of money to a very wealthy cit in a card game. Although it certainly appeared to me that the cit cheated Jack, that's never actually stated. The man will erase the debt as well as provide an insanely huge dowry if Jack will meet, seduce and marry his daughter, Grace Danvers.
Cliched set-up, but very nice execution. Grace, of course is not the gorgon Jack expected. Although she's not a fashionable beauty (too tall, red hair, feminine curves hidden by dress styles, too intelligent for society, not ton
), she's pretty anyway and easy to get along with. Jack finds himself hating the deception, although the amount of money he owes is so huge, he can't tell the guy to stuff-it and court the girl the 'right way'.
One funny thing is that Warren set up various moments where I felt I knew what was going to happen and then she didn't use them in the ways I predicted. So she turned some of the cliches on their heads. Jack does something TSTL in the beginning (in addition to the huge gambling loss) and felt the shoe would drop at any moment, but that particular one evolved differently. It was a nice twist.
Again, I'm really liking Warren's characters. Their chemistry is unmistakable. There is a stretch where I wanted to shake one of the characters for cutting their nose off to spite their face, but I couldn't really see where the action was inorganic. But when the book ends and we get our HEA, it's very romantic and lovely.
Tracy Anne Warren has a new fan in me. She may indulge in tried and true plot devices but I do like her characters and I'm very much looking forward to the next book due out in early 2010.