A beautiful girl stumbles upon a handsome man, lying unconscious in a forest. She needs to get married within the month, he doesn’t remember his name or where he comes from. What’s a girl to do? Keep him!
So starts this book by Teresa Medeiros, one of my favorite romance authors. And she is my favorite because she writes a really good story that’s infused with humor; the combination of which is irresistible.
Laura Fairleigh and her two siblings are the wards of Lady Eleanor Harlow, brought to Arden Manor after a fire kills their parents. Lady Eleanor takes them in in part to assuage the guilt and yearning for her son, Sterling Harlow. Little Sterling was bartered by his father to his great-Uncle, Granville Harlow, the previous Duke of Devonbrooke, in order to become his heir. For years, Lady Eleanor pines for the son she lost. But that son, now the Duke of Devonbrooke, and a returned war hero, disregards her pleading letters. That is until Laura writes with the news of his mother’s death. That sarcastic missive brings a furious Sterling to Arden Manor, where he meets with his unfortunate accident in the woods. Upon finding him, she somehow persuades the amnesiac that she is his fiancee and he has just returned, injured, from the Napoleanic wars. Before the newly christened “Nicholas” knows what hit him, the banns are read, and he’s married to Laura. And that’s just when his memory returns. And the fun starts.
Emotions run from desperation to love to redemption, and Sterling finally finds the ability to forgive the past and move on, with Laura’s help. The book is a quick read and the “romance” part of this romance novel is well represented if you get my meaning.
There’s a wonderful side story involving Lady Diana, Sterling’s cousin and Thane, Lord Gillingham, who is Sterling’s best friend. These two alone warrant their own story. And I can see a sequel in Laura’s sister, Lottie, and brother, George.
I recommend this book for a quick and enjoyable read.