Seduce Me By Christmas
Zebra, Oct 2009, $6.99
His father the Earl embarrassed by his mistake sent his transgression his illegitimate offspring Raoul Charlebois to Dunnington; there the lad made friends with Fredrick (see Bedding the Baron) and Ian (see Seducing the Viscount). As a young adult, Raul has been a rake, but with his two best friends happily married, he now feels the time is right to investigate his unknown past starting with why his father paid 20,000 pounds to conceal him.
The December weather is typically cold and icy as he rides a horse to Cheshire for the first time in a dozen years. However, his steed Hercules becomes unnerved by a sudden darting little boy who apparently is knocked senseless. Raoul takes Jimmy and Master Willie to their guardian Miss Sarah Jefferson who resides in the gamekeeper’s cottage on his father’s estate. Raoul and Sarah are attracted to one another, but as they fall in love and he uncovers information about his heritage, he cannot move past the hurts of his childhood; Sarah prays for a Christmas miracle.
The third Dunnington historical romance stars two memorable lead characters and a strong support cast including the heroes of the previous novels (not read by me) who make for a fabulous Christmas tale. The mystery of the past enhances the present as Sarah loves Raoul, but knows he cannot fully return her regard until he lets go of his demons that co-share his heart with her. Deborah Raleigh provides a winning finish to her saga with this super stand alone that also wraps up the mystery of the late Mr. Dunnington’s legacy.