This months TBR Challenge theme was Old School which meant that we should try to read a book that written some time before the year 2000. I chose this book A) because it's been on my shelf for a long time and it needed to be read and B) it was written in 1997.
When Robert Kemble stumbles across Victoria Lyndon in hedgerow maze, he can't believe his eyes. The girl who'd torn him in two, who let him plan on elopement and then left him standing by the side of the road, was suddenly within arm's reach, and even though his fury still knew no bounds, she was impossible to resist...
Seven years ago he left her all but ruined...
Victoria's father had told her an earl would never marry a vicar's daughter, and he was right. Robert had promised her marriage, then danced off to London while she suffered the shame of a foiled elopement. But even though Victoria doesn't particularly enjoy her new life as a governess, when Robert offers her a job of a different sort—his mistress—she refuses, unable to sacrifice her honor, even for him.
Robert and Victoria meet and it's love at first sight. They are basically inseparable for two months and decide to elope. Unfortunately Victoria's father, the local vicar, and Robert's father both conspire (separately) to keep the couple apart and the elopement fails.
Seven years later they run into each other again. Robert is at a house party where Victoria is the governess. He decides to seek revenge for the major heartache he suffered. Unfortunately for him he as he spends more time with Victoria he realizes that seeking revenge is the last thing that he wants. He admits to himself that he still loves her and wants her back – especially after he talks to both his and Victoria's fathers.
The very last thing Victoria wants is to see the man that broke her heart seven years earlier but she can't seem to get rid of the guy. He is ridiculously persistent and though he ends up saving her from a lecherous Lord who has nasty intentions she still gets dismissed from her position. She manages to find a job in a dress shop and is amazingly happy in her new position. Robert doesn't give up though and eventually takes drastic measures to get Victoria's attention.
This is a love story that pretty much centers on the big mis. Robert believes that Victoria is only after his money and Victoria believes that he was just toying with her and only wanted sex – which she didn't give him. Now I understand that there wouldn't have been a book had there never been a misunderstanding but seven years is a long time to not speak to someone that you believed yourself in love with. I was quite happy when the two figured out what had happened but Victoria wasn't so anxious to forgive Robert for not originally trusting her. Of course she obviously wasn't thinking about how she didn't trust him either. I have to say that Victoria's attitude did get a bit frustrating after a while. I totally saw her point of view but Robert so obviously loved her and wanted what was best for her that I just wanted her to give in.
The characters in the story were lively and interesting and the story definitely kept me interested. Robert was such a dear sweet man. Yes, he was kind of an ass when he was trying to get a little revenge on Victoria but even then he wasn't completely into it. I really liked him and though I wanted he and Victoria to work out because I love my HEA's I have to admit that I thought Robert, for most of the book, needed to find someone else besides the woman he was after. Now she did come around in the end and it was great to see her do so but I just wasn't a fan of Victoria's.
In the end I found it an entertaining read and worth the read. Julia Quinn always provides good stories and this one was no different.
Rating 3.5 out of 5
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