The start of a new series this is the first story that surrounds the three sons of the Duke of Breconridge as they win and lose at love. Starting with the eldest son, and heir to the title Harry is a bit of a spoiled prat: self-indulgent, self-aggrandizing and shallow. Of course, this is not an unusual archetype for a first son in the Georgian era, and Harry is drawn cleverly, with a chance to grow and change as the story progresses. His duty is to marry, and marry well: enriching the looks, bloodline and purse of the Dukedom, and his choice is the toast of the season: Lady Julia.
Julia is everything a prospective bachelor of the time would want, and utterly devoid of any qualities that are endearing. When Harry is injured in a fall, and left to recuperate at Lady Julia’s family home, it is her younger sister who steps in to nurse and entertain the former suitor.
Augusta or Gus was a heroine that I found hard to appreciate. While there were moments where her brains and determination made her a clever character, her inconsistent behavior that vacillated between stridency with Harry and obsequious deference to her parents’ lack of respect or affection was confusing. And, for his part, Harry was just as confused.
Gus had some growing up to do: in the shadow of her elder and beautiful sister she often was relegated to Cinderella status by the entire family, and her reaction to the discomfort made her interactions with Harry feel unbalanced. She has one major trait in her favor, however, she is truly kind and goodhearted: wanting the best for everyone. And when they finally realize the connection between them, absolutely nothing will move her from his side.
Set nearly entirely out of London, the historical detail keeps the reader firmly grounded in late 18th century England. The writing style is beautifully rounded, and while I had some issues with the characters, never once did I want to put this book down. Fast paced with a sweetly developed romance that is a surprise to everyone BUT the reader, this was a great start to a new series and I look forward to more.
Title: A Wicked Pursuit
Author: Isabella Bradford
Series: The Breconridge Brothers #1
Genre: Historical Romance
Published by: Ballantine Books
Source: Publisher Via Edelweiss
Audio Length: 11 Hours: 16 minutes
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ AllRomance ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦Audible ♦Direct from Publisher
In Isabella Bradford’s enthralling new trilogy, three noble brothers—London’s most scandalous rakes—are about to do the unthinkable: settle down. Harry Fitzroy, Earl of Hargreave, is the first to meet his match and lose his heart . . . to a lady he least expected.
As the eldest son of the Duke of Breconridge, Harry Fitzroy is duty-bound to marry—and marry well. Giving up his rakish ways for the pleasures of a bride’s bed becomes a delightful prospect when Harry chooses beautiful Lady Julia Barclay, the catch of the season. But a fall from his horse puts a serious crimp in his plans. Abandoned by Julia before he can propose, the unlucky bachelor finds himself trapped in the country in the care of Julia’s younger sister.
Harry has never met a woman like Lady Augusta. Utterly without artifice, Gus is clever and capable, and seems to care not a fig for society. After a taboo kiss awakens passion that takes them both by surprise, Harry realizes he’d almost given his heart to the wrong sister. While London tongues wag, he’ll use his most seductive powers of persuasion to convince the reluctant Gus that she belongs with him—as his equal, his love, his wife.
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher Via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.