Famous for her agricultural innovations, Amy, Lady Mowbray has never had a romantical thought in her life. Well, apart from her short-lived crush on London’s handsomest man, Lord Pascal, when she was a brainless 14-year-old. She even chose her late husband because he owned the best herd of beef cattle in England!
But fate steps in and waltzes this practical widow out of her rustic retreat into the glamour of the London season. When Pascal pursues her, all her adolescent fantasies come true. And those fantasies turn disturbingly adult when grown-up desire enters the equation. Amy plunges headlong into a reckless affair that promises pleasure beyond her wildest dreams – until she discovers that this glittering world hides damaging secrets and painful revelations set to break a country girl’s tender heart.
All that glitters…
Gervaise Dacre, Lord Pascal needs to marry money to rescue his estate, devastated after a violent storm. He’s never much liked his reputation as London’s handsomest man, but it certainly comes in handy when the time arrives to seek a rich bride. Unfortunately, the current crop of debutantes bores him silly, and he finds himself praying for a sensible woman with a generous dowry.
When he meets Dashing Widow Amy Mowbray, it seems all his prayers have been answered. But his mercenary quest becomes dangerously complicated when he finds himself in thrall to the lovely widow. Soon he’s much more interested in passion than in pounds, shillings and pence. What happens if Amy discovers the sordid truth behind his whirlwind courtship? And if she does, will she see beyond his original, selfish motives to the ardent love that lies unspoken in his sinful heart?
Poor Lord Pascal – he is so beautiful that just his presence has the effect of leaving most debutantes stammering, giggling, or just speechless. But he must endure and find a wealthy lady to wed to bail him out of financial difficulties with his estates. He’s prepared to give up his rakish ways and become a good husband – if only all the young girls weren’t so silly. Then he sees Amy, Lady Mowbray, walk into the room, and he is immediately smitten.
Amy and her friends, Sally and Morwenna, are the next generation of dashing widows. Amy is an intelligent lady who has always loved farming, and her unusual conversation led her to making a shambles of her debut season years ago. She married an older man who was more companion and friend than lover, and who died after two years of marriage. Only agreeing to come to town so that her grieving widowed sister-in-law will come as well, Amy expects to flop in society again, as she did years ago. Imagine her surprise when she is approached by Gervaise, Lord Pascal, who shows interest in her. When she was fourteen years old, Amy had a secret crush on Gervaise, an older man of nineteen, who was visiting her home.
When Gervaise learns that Amy is a wealthy widow, he feels that his prayers have been answered. He has a genuine attraction and liking for her, so if he can convince her to marry him, his financial woes will be solved. Not only that, but he’ll have a wife who stimulates him intellectually and stirs his passion. Everything has always come easy to Lord Pascal, but Amy is going to make him work to win her.
I like how Lord Pascal was willing to dance to Amy’s tune and genuinely court her. I also appreciate that his motives weren’t purely financial. I love that Amy, who was never a social success, still has the gumption to demand a courtship. One of my favorite parts of this story was Amy’s reaction when she overhears gossip that Gervaise is a fortune hunter, only pursuing her to rescue him from his difficulties. Hooray for intelligent women who think and allow explanations to be made! I enjoyed and recommend PURSUING LORD PASCAL, which has Anna Campbell’s trademark charm, entertainment, and steam.