To Pleasure a Lady
Ballantine, Feb 2008, $6.99
In 1817 the oldest Loring sister Arabella feels it is her responsibility to inform their new guardian the Earl of Danvers that neither she nor her younger siblings (Rosalyn and Lillian) need a babysitter as all three are in their twenties. She goes straight to his home to make sure he understands that the siblings are independent and strong enough to take care of themselves. Marcus Pierce is already irate that the late earl turned him into a “procurer” of matrimony for his three daughters. However, expecting the worst he is stunned when he meets Arabella as he believes he has fallen in love at first sight; the only problem is that the target of his affection loathes him.
They argue, fuss and fight until a frustrated Marcus bets Arabella that he can charm her into his bed in two weeks; if he fails she will be left a spinster to run a finishing school or whatever shelf she sees fit to accomplish. She accepts his daring wager. As he educates her in the seduction of love, Arabella feels divided as she has fallen in love with her guardian, which could cost her the independence she values.
The first Courtship Wars is a great often amusing gender battle between two protagonists who want to win their sexual contest at all costs. The story line is fast-paced as Marcus wonders if love is worth the Taming of the Shrew while Arabella considers whether total independence from male domination is worth a broken heart. Fans will receive immense pleasure from this terrific Regency romance.