Genre: historical romance
The only thing more troublesome than a Cynster man … is a Cynster Lady who believes love is not her destiny. Famously known in London society as “The Matchbreaker”, Henrietta Cynster’s uncanny skill lies in preventing ill-fated nuptials – not in falling victim to Cupid’s spell. But then she disrupts one match too many, and feels honor-bound to assist dashing James Glossup in finding a suitable bride for a marriage-of-convenience.
A task infernally complicated by the undeniable, unquenchable attraction that flares between James and Henrietta, who continues to believe she will never fall…
It has been 8 years since their cousin Anjelica handed the magical pendant to Henrietta, but Henriette has not worn it in years. She doesn’t think she is meant to find a love match, and the pendant is supposed to help her find her one and only hero, the one man who can make her happy in marriage. But Mary is 22 now, and she wants to start her own life, which means Henrietta has to find her husband first, and then she will be able to give Mary the pendant on the evening of her engagement ball, as tradition wants it.
She refuses to accept the pendant now, and Henrietta doesn’t have much choice but to start wearing it again, as her little sister is relentless when she wants something. It is apparent that Mary already has her eyes set on a certain gentleman, but she does not want to reveal his name, she wants things done properly, and the pendants acknowledgement. Of course fate doesn’t work that way, but Mary will find that out in her own book.
That evening Henrietta has to tell her best friend Melinda Wentworth and her parents what she has found out about Melinda’s latest suitor, James Glossup. Which is not easy, as James is one of her brother Simon’s best friends. But Melissa wants to marry for love, and James is not in love with her. She knows he has to marry to get his great aunts fortune. Which means he is not a fortune hunter, as he has money enough of his own, but he is not after Melinda for love. Melinda is disappointed, as James is a fine figure, but she also did suspect those facts already, or she would not have asked Henrietta to look into things.
James though is furious when he finds out that Henrietta meddled in his affairs. He needs to be married before the end of next month, or he will loose his great aunts money, and he needs that to keep up the properties he has inherited from her. Which means he will have to fire all the staff and servants, and he really does not want to do that. He is rich, but not nearly rich enough to pay for everything that is necessary. Of course Henrietta did not know that, and when he explains it to her, she promises to help him find a suitable bride.
With Henrietta’s guidance, he quickly gets access to the right kind of ladies, and he won’t be shunned when it gets known that the Wentworths have rejected him.
Henrietta and James have known each other for many years, as he is her brother’s best friend. But they never spend much time together, so they don’t really know the other. And now that they are planning and plotting and going out together to find him a suitable bride, there is this unsuspected attraction between them. To his own surprise, James enjoys her company, Henrietta is a smart and elegant young lady, and with 29 used to going her own way. She doesn’t need to be chaperoned by her family anymore, and goes out into society on her own.
Dangerous accidents are happening to Henrietta, but luckily James is there to safe her. And when they find out that a dangerous murdered is after Henrietta, as he thinks she might recognize him, they need the whole family to keep her safe and find this killer.
I really enjoyed this story. It read much easier than her previous books, as though she has changed her writing style a little. Less difficult words, and less time spend just thinking. I like this change a lot.
I liked Henrietta, she is very sensible and 29 years, which is firmly on the shelf in that time, but she enjoys her life. Finding a man to love was not on her to-do list at all. I like reading about older heroines in my books, although the sassy debutantes are fun as well. But Henrietta knows what she wants from life, and how to get it. She knows her place in society and uses that to help others find a love match. She is known as the Match Breaker, but she also approves a lot of matches.
James was never in a hurry to marry, which is why his great aunt put that stipulation in her last will. So now he has to hurry and find himself a bride, and one who will agree to be married really soon. He though Melissa would suit him, but he did not know she was after a love match. Nor did he tell her the truth about his own reasons. And while Henrietta is busy making a short list of suitable brides for him, he just wants to put her name on it. But he doesn’t want to scare her away by being too hasty. He will just invent reasons why those women won’t suit him at all.
But when Henrietta is in danger, all his protective instincts come to the fore, and he just knows she is his. Now he will have to convince Henrietta of this fact.
I loved seeing the whole family including Barnaby and Inspector Stokes rally around them, tying to catch the killer. And he really is a cold blooded psychopath, who managed to surprise me in his cunning ways.
I am looking forward to the next book.
© 2013 Reviews by Aurian