This is an Official Review by an Eye On Romance Official Reviewer
Date of Review: 01/04/11
Queen Victoria has just been proclaimed queen and the possibility is there for men to make their fortune. In this story one man is determined to destroy the man who did not help him when he was younger and now has the means to do so. In an Act of Parliament, Ash has his wish and he is to take the dukedom.
Ash Turner is a business man. He made his fortune in India after he decided to leave his mother and brothers so they could have better life after being rebuffed by the Duke of Parford. Ash returns from India very successful but finds his brothers living on the streets after their mother, who is mad, ensures that the two boys cannot stay with her. Ash gives them every opportunity and builds an image of him as a powerful and influential magnate. Underneath he is actually an insecure man who holds a secret. He has done all manner of things to hide this secret. His main mission is to seek revenge on the man who did not care for his family when Ash pleaded with the duke. He has found the means, through a bigamist marriage, to justify his case. All he has to do is convince enough Lords to do endorse the legislation.
Lady Anna Margaret Dalrymple is the daughter of a duke but if Ash has his way she will be the bastard daughter of a duke. She is currently caring for her father, the duke, as he is very ill and trying to maintain her loyalty to her brothers, Richard and Edmund, as they petition Parliament to have the decision overturned. As Ash and his brother arrive at the manor, Margaret takes on the persona of a nurse caring for the duke so that she can spy on the Turner brothers and feed the information to her own brothers. What she doesn’t bargain for is that Ash is more of a gentleman than her father or brothers. Margaret is the decisive element in this struggle for the dukedom. Margaret also struggles with the anger and disparaging remarks her father makes as though he doesn’t care.
What can I say but I loved this story. Ash, which is not his full name but you will have to read that for yourself, is such a gentleman. He cares about the downtrodden and will assist them as much as he can using his influence. Margaret, at first, is unsure about Ash and his brother as she is on the Dalrymple side but as she comes to know the Turners, she revises her thinking about their character. She also keeps Ash’s secret, one which could have easily destroyed all he was trying to achieve. However, the one thing Margaret didn't do that I thought she might is help Ash to read.
The gentleness in Ash is the complete opposite to the violence in Margaret’s brothers and she notices that men don’t need violence to get their way. Ash is certainly a very different character to the norm and he is immediately and consistently likeable. He is a supporter of those less well off than him which is another admirable quality. Margaret is a lady and after what she goes through she deserves a man like Ash. This is another delightful story from Ms Milan.