Eloisa James returns to the Wildes of Lindow Castle series with the next Wilde child who runs and joins a theatre troupe — and the duke who tries to save her reputation.
He wants a prim and proper duchess, not the Wildest of the Wildes!
Already notorious for the golden hair that proves her mother’s infidelity, Lady Joan can’t seem to avoid scandals, but her latest escapade may finally ruin her: she’s determined to perform the title role of a prince—in breeches, naturally.
She has the perfect model for an aristocratic male in mind: Thaddeus Erskine Shaw, Viscount Greywick, a man who scorned the very idea of marrying her.
Not that Joan would want such a dubious honor, of course.
For years, Thaddeus has avoided the one Wilde who shakes his composure, but he’s horrified when he grasps the danger Joan’s putting herself in. Staring into her defiant eyes, he makes the grim vow that he’ll keep her safe.
He strikes a bargain: after one performance, the lady must return to her father’s castle and marry one of three gentlemen whom he deems acceptable.
Not including him, of course.
Another member of one of our favorite families has found their perfect match! And Eloisa James has written yet another wonderful book. I loved this story just as much as the rest of the series, but Joan is by far my favorite of the Wilde women. I saw a lot of myself in her and it gave me a deeper appreciation for her tenacity and her general “devil may care” attitude when it comes to what the world thinks of her. The chemistry between Joan and Thaddeus is incredible. They are truly a perfect match up. He is rigid where she is wild, and she is open where he is closed off. Seeing how their friendship turns to romance and, helps them become their best selves is magical.
Joan Wilde is technically not a Wilde at all, she is the product of her mother’s infidelity. But don’t let her looks and lack of Wilde blood fool you. In all the ways that matter to the Duke and the rest of her family she is as much one of them as they are. However, society refuses to let her or any of their son’s forget that she is illegitimate. Having lived her whole life in the shadow of her scandalous origins she has grown a thick skin and a wicked sense of humor, one that has her on the verge of being expelled from polite society. Too bad she doesn’t care what ANY of them think, right? What happens if she makes friends with the most uptight member of society? Will she then care what they think, or will it be too late for it to make a difference?
Thaddeus Erskine Shaw, Viscount Greywick, is a close friend of the Wilde family, in fact he courted two of the Duke’s daughters before they fell in love and married their husbands. When he and his mother decided to travel to Lindow Castle for a visit with their friends the last thing he expected was to catch the one Wilde he isn’t friends with, in the process of trying to run a way and join a traveling theater troupe. Bound by honor and a duty to his friendship with the family he vows to go with her and keep her safe but only for one show and only if she returns to the castle after the show and settles down and marries one of the me, he chooses for her. Now saddled with helping her learn how to portray a man, including going out in public in breeches and fencing lessons, he has the opportunity to get to know her better and to understand why she constantly flirts with scandal and why her reputation doesn’t seem to matter to her. With understanding come acceptance. With acceptance comes letting down your carefully constructed guard and with that comes a friendship in a most unlikely place. Will she shake up his world and give him the chance to be more than a future duke? Will he be able to save her from her own self-destruction without risking his own?
I loved this series and this family so much. Even though it has been said this is the last of the series I really hope that is wrong and we get to see more from The Wildes of Lindow Castle.