The Reluctant Governess
A Ladies Unlaced novel
by Maggie Robinson
Ebook | ISBN 9780698182752 | 311 Pages | 19 Aug 2014 |Penguin/InterMix | Adult
E-Galley provided by publisher for review purposes. No remuneration was exchanged and all pinions presented herein are my own except as noted.
A secretary for the renowned Evensong Agency, Eliza Lawrence may have a pretty face, but she’s much prouder of her mind and her morals. When she’s pressed into temporary governess duty as a favor to her boss, she doesn’t expect to bend one bit for the rakish Nicholas Raeburn. Not even when he opens the door to her half-dressed…
Despite his bad reputation, Nicholas is a man of honor. To Nick’s way of thinking, he doesn’t need any help raising his daughter, Domenica. If only he weren’t so drawn to the meddlesome woman’s sparkling wit and uncommon beauty…
But when an act of misplaced chivalry goes seriously awry, resulting in mayhem and almost murder, Eliza becomes the only woman he can depend upon. Nick will do anything to protect his family, but who will protect him from falling in love with his reluctant governess?
He is overused to the libertine lifestyle he led he is forced to come to grips with being more upright and more sedate and that there are certain advantages to playing the straight and narrow.
It’s a topsy-turvy world for both main characters with heat between the sheets and some Edwardian style action.
In watching early Downton Abbey I have always been impressed by how much the world was changing on almost every level in the early 1900s. Phones, clothes, roles, mores and beyond. What upset, confusion and personal conflict it must have caused. It’s probably not too much different than today except that the roles of women changed very fast with them heading, unescorted, into the work place.
It is a fascinating time to read or watch and must offer writers a great deal of new material as the industrial age and the Victorian eras smash into each other head long. It is a nice change from Regency or Highlanders.
It’s a full length romance novel, but the romance presents a sudden turnaround. I suppose Eliza sees that the artist, Nicholas really loves his child, and is willing to put himself in harm’s way to help one of his models. And, he sees how much he needs a stable home life and of course, meeting Eliza changes him fundamentally. Actually, Nicholas and Eliza both change. She gets off her moral high-horse. He grows up as he sees the mess some of his friends have made and how others have settled down from crazy to reasonable. He has one good friend in particular who is both an enabler and a straight shooter. But the two gents actually look like they lead wild lives more than they are leading at the time of the novel. Once you have a reputation it can be hard to escape it.
This was an enjoyable and very well-paced story with romance and suspense. Lots of fun!