The Dare and the Doctor by Kate Noble
Series: Winner Takes All #3
Also in this series: Miss Goodhue Lives for a Night
Published by Headline Eternal
Publication Date: November 22nd 2016
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Dr. Rhys Gray and Miss Margaret Babcock are friends—strictly friends. But over the course of the year, as they exchange dozens of letters, they share personal details that put them on the path to something more. When Dr. Gray helps Margaret realize her dearest dream and she comes to his defense in the uproar that follows, it seems that their connection cannot be denied. But will their relationship stand the scruples of society and jealous intendeds, or are they destined to be only friends, and nothing more?
Rhys is a doctor and a friend of Margaret’s father. He came to visit and stayed at their house. He and Margaret became friends and after he leaves to go back to Greenwich they start corresponding and build a great friendship. When Rhys tells the London Horticultural Society about her hybrid roses and they state that they are interested in seeing them Margaret balks. She’s not sure she can get to London and leave the home she’s known. She finally agrees to go after hearing her mother whisper in her ear, “I dare you.” Margaret’s mother has been dead for years but that was her favorite way of getting Margaret to do things she didn’t want to do.
After arriving in London Margaret gets talked into going to balls, etc., by her friends and hosts but she just wants to garden. She does head to Vauxhall with Rhys but they both fear that her hosts, his friends, are trying to get them together. They assure each other that they have no designs on each other and that they are just friends. Margaret is happy to be friends with Rhys until she learns that he is to be married to the beautiful Miss Sylvia Morton.
Miss Morton is kind and strikes up a friendship with Margaret which includes heading to all of the events that Margaret would rather not go to. She doesn’t want to hurt Sylvia’s feelings though so she goes. She loves seeing Rhys at these events but unfortunately Sylvia is always there reminding her that Rhys isn’t hers. She tells herself it doesn’t bother her but she lies. She starts to fall for Rhys but knows she can never have him and it starts to break her heart.
This was a very sweet story of two very similar characters. Rhys and Margaret are just such nerds and perfect for each other. 🙂 He loves hearing about her plants and she loves hearing about and seeing all of the things in his laboratory. How either of them thought they could just be friends was beyond me. I loved how comfortable they were with each other. Their conversations weren’t strained for lack of anything to say and they took the other for who they truly were – not who they wanted them to be.
Rhys was really in a pickle with his mom having made an agreement with the Morton’s to have Rhys marry Sylvia. It had been years since the agreement was made but both families were sticking to it. Rhys truly didn’t want to marry Sylvia but he felt like he had to for the good of the family. My heart went out to him in his predicament. Of course Sylvia didn’t help matters because I could see how scheming she was from the beginning and didn’t like her one bit.
The book was sweet and I enjoyed it. It was slow at times but for the most part a good, steady romance.
Rating: 3.5/3.75 out of 5