Series: Castles Ever After #1
Genres: Historical Romance
Published by Avon on 8 January 2014
This book was quite simply delight from start to finish. I’m terribly sorry but I intend to wax lyrical about the characterisation, plot and style. From the moment I read that the heroine was called Isolde Ophelia Goodnight, I knew I would be in for a treat. Isolde (Izzy to her friends) is the penniless daughter of a renowned writer. She unexpectedly finds herself the owner of a decrepit Gothic castle that still contains the former owner Ransom, Duke of Rothbury. Izzy was full of strength, grace and determination even though she had wild hair that refused to be tamed. She spent supporting her father yet he failed to provide for her in his will and just shy of destitute, she and her pet ermine are determined to make the best of their adventure. Sure the castle might be in tatters and her room full of bats but she’s known an awful lot worse. I loved the gentle way that she interacted with her father’s fans and how she was able to remain upbeat even in dire situations.
Ransom is your typical Byronic hero. His mother died in childbirth and his father blamed him for her death. He thought his life had taken a turn for the better when he got engaged but she ran off with another man. He was partially blinded in a duel with this man. Ransom secluded himself in his castle since his injury and has forsaken all company apart from his faithful manservant. He refuses to turn the castle over to Izzy as he never authorised the sale and there is something rather captivating about her. It is only when Izzy helps him go through his mountain of correspondence that they realise someone has been taking advantage of his absence.
Dare has created a romance that is endearing, sweet and downright humorous. Our couple are thrown together through a series of unfortunate circumstances and find it hard to resist each other. Ransom needs Izzy to help him come to terms with his injury and she needs him to make her feel something other than plain. Some modern values crept in at this point but to be honest, I was enjoying the book so much I didn’t care.
I was enchanted with this novel and can’t wait for the next in the series. Definitely pop this on top of your historical romance tbr pile.