Avon, Jul 26 2011, $7.99
In 1815 Caleb Talbot and Marah Farnsworth meet and share a wonderful passionate afternoon. She fell in love, but he leaves feeling his ancestry made him unworthy of her. She was heartbroken and rusticated in Baybary for two years while he turned to drink.
Two years later, his brother Justin the earl finds Caleb in a dive drinking excessively. He informs his sibling their father is dying and wants to see Caleb to learn why he ran away from home. At the same time Marah’s friend, Justin’s wife Victoria asks her to come to London with her as she needs her to help her deal with the pain suffered by her husband with his father dying and his brother missing. Reluctantly she agrees. Marah muses that it will also give her time to see her friend Emerson Winstead. When Caleb and Marah meet again, the spark remains strong, but she refuses to take a chance on a man who leaves while he knows he made the mistake of his life when he left.
Though somewhat straightforward and deliberately paced, Regency readers will enjoy the third “Billingham Bastards” Regency romance (see The Unclaimed Duchess and What the Duke Desires). Marah is a wonderful protagonist as she seemingly chooses fear and her definition of dependable over love and out of control. Caleb knows he made the biggest blunder of his life when he fell into self pity, but to rectify his mistake means embracing love and happiness emotions he feels he is unworthy of. Like its predecessors A Scoundrel’s Surrender is an engaging historical.