The special magic of Mary Balogh shines with special joy in her latest Regency delight.

It is time for Edgar Downes to find a wife. At least his aging father believes so, and, as a dutiful son, the younger Mr. Downes agrees to journey to London, look over the eligible young ladies and acquire the desired bride by Christmas. Wealth, after all, is ample compensation for his lack of aristocratic birth.

Nothing about the widowed Lady Helena Stapleton fits the profile of an acceptable mother of his children, but Edgar finds himself bowled over by both her beauty and her scathing wit. And although both cannot resist a night of passion together, neither of them could possibly be interested in any further connection.

Fate, however, has other plans. Can an independent lady with a painful secret trust her heart to the keeping of her unexpected new husband?

Utterly at home in the Regency period, Ms. Balogh once again breaks new ground as she delves into the deepest corners of the soul and warms our hearts with the radiant joy of true love in a moving resolution. (Nov., 222 pp., $4.99)

Reviewed by: 
Melinda Helfer