Title: The Earl’s Defiant Wallflower
Author: Erica Ridley
Publisher: Intrepid Reads
Release Date: December 2014
Length: 203 pages
Series?: The Dukes of War #2
Genre: Historical, Romance
Oliver York returns from war to find his father dead, his finances in arrears, and himself the new Earl of Carlisle. If he doesn’t marry an heiress—and fast!—he and his tenants are going to be pitching tents down by the Thames. He definitely shouldn’t be trading kisses with a penniless debutante…no matter how captivating she is!
Miss Grace Halton is in England just long enough to satisfy the terms of her dowry. But a marriage of convenience isn’t as easy as she’d hoped. Back in America, her ailing mother needs medicine only Grace’s dowry can afford. Which means the dashing earl she can’t get out of her mind is the one man she can’t let into her heart.
Grace Hamilton is a Yankee. An American. She and her mother have struggled for years. Now that her mother has fallen quite ill, Grace plans to travel back to England, secure a wealthy husband, collect her dowry, and return to care for her mother.
In order to accomplish any of this, Grace has to essentially convince her tyrannical and heartless grandparents and get in their good graces. They were the best thing done well in this short novel.
Oliver York has returned from the war and finds himself seeking to save Grace among the ton. But Oliver also is in dire straits – his father bankrupted the family estate and title.
This was almost insta-love between the two, but not quite. It’s clear there is something, but the two don’t allow themselves to enter the marriage market mindset with one another because they’re both seeking a mate with money.
Grace most certainly displays her American spirit while trying to fit in and follow the rules of the aristocracy. It is a decidedly set of hard tasks that she feels she will never master.
There were so many standards and rules and etiquette broken, ignored, or not even acknowledged by multiple characters. It seemed very blase and just doesn’t fit the time period at all.
The end was just off course. Everything got wrapped up nice and neat and much too fast for plausible or authentic purposes. But also from the beginning the entire mother storyline wasn’t plausible either.
I think most of the characters had some development, but they needed some…refinement. There was a lot missing in the plot and setting. None of the secondary characters really made a debut and there weren’t really any subplots besides ones related to Grace’s goal in mind. It seemed like this was written to be a novela instead of a novel.