England 1809 - At twenty-nine years old Lady Diana Fordham is known by the ton as an eccentric spinster with no chance of marrying – a bit long in the tooth in spite of a very ample dowry. Beautiful, intelligent, and patient, Diana knows what she wants and has waited long enough! The man who broke her heart ten years ago had just run out of time and now Diana was ready to launch an elaborate plan to storm his defenses and bring him to task! She devises a plan to make it appear that she has been kidnapped by the worst sort of rake she could find – knowing in her heart that Temple would come to rescue her. Her father, Lord Fordham, raises the alarm that she has been abducted and announces that whoever rescues her will be the man Diana will marry her – and so the race was on!
The Marquis of Templeton, known as the "Temple", appears as an ‘idiot fop’ to most observers. He has used this ruse to disguise his true identity as a very courageous and effective spy. The Foreign Office assigns him the task of rescuing the chit and see her married to one of two suitors that have asked for her hand in marriage. Temple would rather not have to do this as the less time spent in Diana’s company the better. He has always secretly been in love with Diana but through some very convoluted logic (it’s a guy thing), born of stubbornness and rebellion, has distanced himself from her - convinced that he would place her in danger. Unfortunately, danger has caught up with Diana, in the form of, and from a source that no one would have suspected as Temple and the ‘heiress bride stealers’ race on to Gretna Green.
STEALING THE BRIDE should steal the hearts of most Regency romance readers. The last ditch effort of the strong and resourceful lead heroine, Lady Diana, to bring Temple up to snuff was for me a lovely plot that I truly enjoyed. The supporting characters were delightful and charmingly amusing and the re-introduction of characters from her previous novels has me now scurrying around looking for the earlier related publications. I have not been disappointed by this author as she brings originality, sparkling dialog and feeling to her characters that make you a part of the ‘family’ and looking for more. This was a truly enjoyable read that I can heartily recommend.