This time out I have Rose Lerner's In for a Penny (Leisure, received from publisher). I had this one on my to-buy list, so I was happy to see it come in with the review books. Lord Nevinstoke, or Nev to his friends, has been leading a pretty carefree life, out with his friends till all hours, taking his mistress to the theatre. He meets a very lovely young woman at a party and breaks with tradition to introduce himself to her. Penelope Brown isn't looking for passion, and doesn't expect to find love, but her very rich father and mother hope she'll snare a titled gentleman despite her family's roots in the working class. When she meets Nev, she's charmed in spite of herself, but she realizes he is not husband material. Nev himself doesn't plan to be anyone's husband for a long, long time, and if not for his father's untimely death in a drunken duel, he wouldn't need to consider it. But now he's got a mountain of debt to deal with and the only way to solve that is to find himself an heiress bride. Fortunately for him, he's met Penelope. Her father doesn't expect her to agree to a marriage to such a wastrel, but Penelope finds herself saying 'yes' when Nev explains the situation. Nev is determined to turn over a new leaf and set the family's estate to rights again, which means they travel to Loweston to the family home and try to turn things around while settling into their new marriage. Nev is no househusband, but Penelope's got a real head for numbers, so she's an enormous help to him, and they begin to develop a real friendship to go along with the more intimate side of their marriage. This one is very busy, a little too busy for me. I know there are fans of this sort of story, and they'll likely adore this book. But I didn't feel like it did anything different, or stood out from the rest of the stories like it in any real way, which disappointed me, as the blurbs I'd seen previously made me add it to my shopping list. A shame. I'm borrowing only three of Cupid's five arrows for this one.
Until next time, happy reading!