When the Marquess Was Mine by Caroline Linden
Series: The Wagers of Sin #3
Publication Date: September 24, 2019
Genres: Historical Romance
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In the game of love…
Georgiana Lucas despises the arrogant and cruel Marquess of Westmorland even before learning that he's won the deed to her friend Kitty's home in a card game. Still, Georgiana assures Kitty the marquess wouldn't possibly come all the way to Derbyshire to throw them out—until he shows up, bloody and unconscious. Fearing that Kitty would rather see him die, Georgiana blurts out that he's her fiancé. She'll nurse the hateful man back to health and make him vow to leave and never return. The man who wakes up, though, is nothing like the heartless rogue Georgiana thought she knew…
You have to risk it all
He wakes up with no memory of being assaulted—or of who he is. The bewitching beauty tending him so devotedly calls him Rob and claims she's his fiancée even as she avoids his touch. Though he can't remember how he won her hand, he's now determined to win her heart. But as his memory returns and the truth is revealed, Rob must decide if the game is up—or if he'll take a chance on a love that defies all odds.
Georgiana Lucas is visiting her friend Kitty and her family when they receive a message from Kitty’s husband. It just says that by no means are they to let the Marquess of Westmorland into the house. The family has no idea what’s going on as Kitty’s husband is non-specific as to why. When Georgiana is out riding with a groom, she sees a man being attacked and insists on scaring off the attackers and helping the man back to Kitty’s house.
When they finally get the man back to the house, some of the mud from the road rubs off and Georgiana sees that it’s the Marquess of Westmorland. Georgiana knows that Kitty can be vindictive (at least she could be when they were in school together) and since her husband told her not to let Westmorland enter the house, Georgiana knows that Kitty might not help him, even though he’s injured. Georgiana panics and tells Kitty that the man is her fiancé Robert Sterling.
Georgiana stays with Westmorland day and night while he fights for his life, and the family is touched by how dedicated she is when in fact she’s just scared he’ll wake up and utter his true identity. Fortunately for Georgiana, Westmorland wakes up and has no idea who he is. Before Georgiana can tell him the truth, the doctor spouts that he is Robert Sterling and that he’s Georgiana’s fiancé. Oops.
So begins the romance of Georgiana and Rob. Rob believes that Georgiana is his fiance, so he treats as he would a fiance – with kindness, compliments and love. He’s also amazed that the beautiful woman by his side is his. I loved watching Georgiana fall in love with Westmorland and learn that he wasn’t the complete ass she believed him to be. He’s actually very sweet and kind and I loved him to pieces! Yes, he liked to gamble and drink, but what young buck of that time didn’t? Their time spent together was lovely and Linden did a great job with this couple.
When Rob gets some of his memory back, he’s not upset at Georgiana for not telling him the truth – he’s too in love with her by that time. He’s encouraged by his family to forget her, but he just can’t. He heads back to London and his friend reminds him how he had agreed to help him catch a smuggler. This was subtly mentioned at the beginning of the book but not in any detail. Though there was that mention, it still felt as if this part of the book was tacked on and I didn’t really care for it.
Overall I really enjoyed this book. When I read a Linden book it reminds me of how much I like her as an author and now I need to go read more of her stories.
Rating: 4 out of 5