An ill-fated elopement cost English-born governess Bernadette Holly her reputation, her unsuitable lover and any chance of a future match. She has nothing left to fear--not even the bitter, dangerously handsome Scot due to marry her young charge. Naive wallflower Avaline is terrified to wed Rabbie Mackenzie, but if he sends her home, she will be ruined. Bernadette's solution: convince Rabbie to get Avaline to cry off...while ignoring her own traitorous attraction to him.
A forced engagement to an Englishwoman is a hard pill for any Scot to swallow. It's even worse when the fiancée in question is a delicate, foolish young miss--unlike her spirited, quick-witted governess. Sparring with Bernadette brings passion and light back to Rabbie's life after the failed Jacobite uprising. His clan's future depends upon his match to another, but how can any Highlander forsake a love that stirs his heart and soul?
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"Lord Kent reeked of wine. He was impatient and made cross by the wait. He'd dressed in formal clothing and a newly styled and powdered wig. His shirt was trimmed in lace that dripped from his coat sleeves, and his neck cloth was tied so ornately it was small wonder he hadn't choked himself in the process." (p. 68)
"No, men didn't intimidate her. No one intimidated her. She was an island unto herself, an untouchable, damaged bit of flotsam in a vast sea. Occasionally, she bumped into this ship or that buoy, but she would always spin away and continued on with her solo journey through this life." (p. 68)
"That woman was like a book--as if he'd opened one with the certainty it would be dull, but then finding something compelling enough to make him want to turn the page. / That he wanted to turn the page was perhaps the most unsettling idea to have entered his thoughts in a very long while." (p. 109)
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