I read a lot of historical romance once upon a time. Lately, I’ve found myself picking up more and more of them. What a gorgeous cover for A Wicked Pursuit! Add a wounded hero, an ugly duckling and I had to check it out.
Title: A Wicked Pursuit: A Breconridge Brothers Novel (The Breconridge Brothers)
Author: Isabella Bradford
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Ballantine Books via NetGalley
Release date: February 2014
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 who’s not all what he 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.
On a hunt for a bride, Harry found the perfect woman in Lady Julia. She was not only beautiful, but the biggest catch of the season. Unfortunately, when he went to purpose, she’d vanished. Determined to capture her before anyone else, Harry immediately departed for her father’s country estate. A lively chase sent him tumbling from his horse before he could do the deed, destroying both his plans and his leg.
Lady August knew her duty, so when Duke of Breconridge suffered an injury on her father’s property, she vowed to see him walk again. Gus wasn’t pretty or accomplished like her sister, so when Harry began flirting with her, she couldn’t help fall a little in love with him. Harry’s antics as he convalesced replaced her calm, country life with the excitement of stolen kisses and forbidden touches. But they couldn’t hide forever, and their idyllic life came to an abrupt end when the outside world intruded. Soon, they’d discover if their love was strong enough to survive the gossip of the Ton…and their own fears.
Harry was roguish, a little spoiled, and charming enough that I couldn’t help like him anyway. When he showed Gus that she deserved more than to be hidden away on her father’s estate, I came to adore him. Though the story was very sweet, some of it didn’t suit the time period, not without an ensuring scandal. The only tension in the book was generated between Harry and Gus. I kept waiting for the story to build, but there was no great suspense or mystery to solve. And though I liked Harry, his anger at the end of the book seemed sudden and a bit out of character. By contrast, I thoroughly enjoyed how Gus handled herself and the unusually taciturn Harry. The wrap-up was done perfectly. So, while there were a few minor problems, I enjoyed A Wicked Pursuit.