Miss Cassandra Howell is too tall, too bookish, and too smart—but she does have money and a father who wants a grand title for her. Cassandra hasn’t felt a desire to marry until she meets the sinfully handsome Duke of Camberly, who captures her imagination . . . until Soren York, Earl of Dewsberry and her family’s sworn enemy, steps in the way.
The Holwells ruined Soren’s family, and he’s lived on the knife’s edge trying to resurrect their fortunes . . . until he considers marrying the Holwell Heiress. Not only would her dowry give him the funds he needs, he has secretly had an eye on the independent-minded bluestocking since they both first realized the differences between men and women.
She likes to read; he has no patience for books. She knows little of sex; he is a man of the world and willing to school her. Her family destroyed his; his offer of marriage may be her only salvation.
Now Cassandra and Soren must learn to love each other for who they are, not what they are—and the lessons are becoming an exercise in absolute pleasure.
Click on title below for direct Amazon buy link: A Match Made in Bed: A Spinster Heiresses Novel (The Spinster Heiresses)
What happens when you take feuding families, then childhood friends, then friends to enemies (at least on one of their parts) then a forced marriage of convenience? You get one fantastic book! Heiress Cassandra Holwell has never forgiven Soren York for his cruel act when they were teenagers. The incident was particularly painful to Cass, as Soren was her friend, one who helped her not to feel like an outsider. Now, a decade later, Soren is back from Canada to claim the title of Earl of Dewsberry, and to try to find an heiress to help save his estate. He would like nothing better than to convince his childhood friend, Cass, to marry him. In truth, he doesn’t remember insulting her all those years ago, because that was the time his father pulled him out of school and shipped him off to Canada, and he was dealing with his own anger and disappointment. Though Cass is giving him the cold shoulder, and her father is still holding onto their families’ old feud, Soren is determined to at least try to win Cass.
Cass realizes that Soren needs an heiress, and she knows that she’s at the top of his list. She, however, has set her sights on a duke, and is thrilled to be attending his house party. She is less than thrilled to find Soren also in attendance, and her hopes are crushed when she realizes that the duke invited her merely to cover a secret dalliance. When an unfortunate set of circumstances causes Cass to be found in a compromising position with Soren, she has to make a decision. Will she marry her former friend to save her reputation, or will she accept social ruin and be forever banished to the country, never marrying or having children and a home of her own? Her father has made it clear that if she chooses to marry Soren, he will disown her.
Though Cass is strong willed and intelligent, she has always been an obedient daughter, and is very torn by the choice she must make. Further drama, and a conversation with Soren, and Cass decides on marriage. A kiss they shared hints that the physical part of marriage, at least, may be very pleasurable. Never one to waste time, Soren applies for a special license, and they are wed almost immediately.
Some aspects of Cass’s behavior didn’t endear her to me at first. She seemed haughty and very proud of her presumed intelligence, and her treatment of Soren was purely rude. She was determined that Cornwall, where Soren’s family home is located, was a provincial, dull area that couldn’t possibly harbor any interesting or intelligent people to attend the salons she planned on hosting. Yet, when things drastically go wrong, she shows what she’s truly made of. Cass takes in stride the surprise (that’s putting it mildly) that Soren springs on her, and backs him up in dealing with his truly awful mother. She also became determined to find her own niche in Cornwall, and became a loving figure to Logan, the unexpected addition to their household. I came to love and admire her resilience, her willingness to change, and the wonderful person she became.
I found Soren extremely likeable from the beginning. He wasn’t phony, and didn’t try to play Cass, he was straightforward. He took her slings and snubs with grace, and behaved like a gentleman. When disaster befell them after their marriage, he would have been totally justified in being enraged, yet he never blamed Cass, and immediately began to make plans on how to recover. His care of Cass and other members of his household was above reproach, yet he was strong enough to stand up to his dragon of a mother when she was in the wrong.
A MATCH MADE IN BED captivated me from beginning to end. Author Cathy Maxwell tossed in so many twists and different tropes, yet it all worked together perfectly. There is only one facet of the story that didn’t work for me, and that’s the villain not getting his comeuppance. I believe there was a way legally this could have been done, and that would have made it a perfect read for me. Still, I found the story exciting, romantic, and touching. The passion between Soren and Cass was beautiful, as was their slow building trust and love. In addition, their genuine liking for each other, and their ability to talk things through made A MATCH MADE IN BED a stellar read for me, one that will go on my keeper shelf. ~Rose