Title: The Beautiful One The Scandalous Sister’s Series
Author: Emily Greenwood
Genre: Historical Romance, Regency
Story Setting: Stillwell Estate, England
Published by: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Published Date: June 2, 2015
About the Story: “A SIZZLING ROMANCE THAT TOUCHES THE HEART.” -Sally MacKenzie, USA Today bestselling author
A PICTURE SAYS A THOUSAND WORDS… The ton is buzzing about The Beautiful One, a striking figure in a scandalous book of nude sketches. Only two men know the true identity of The Beautiful One, and they are scouring the countryside, determined to find her.
BUT NOT THE MOST IMPORTANT ONES The unlikely center of the scandal, Anna Black is forced to flee home as disaster looms. Her tomboy’s heart and impertinent tongue serve her well when she meets the most brooding viscount ever to darken a drawing room. Will Halifax, Viscount Grandville, has his reasons for pushing people away, and when his tempestuous teenaged ward arrives on his doorstep, he presses Anna to take on her care. As Anna begins to melt the Viscount’s frozen heart, she knows the more she loves, the more she has to lose. For although Will cares nothing for what makes Society titter, he has yet to see The Beautiful One.
My Thoughts: I’ve read and reviewed three of Emily Greenwood’s works from The Mischief Series. I’ve enjoyed every one of them. This begins a new series which appears to be just as fun. Ms. Greenwood weaves lovely Regencies with very enticing, unusual plots, a bit out of the ordinary. She further entertains with sizzling love between hero and heroine enough, mind you, to curl your toes.
Anna Black, a rather free spirit brought about by her mother’s early death, had also recently lost her father, a medical doctor. He had passion for the study of birds, using Anna’s talent to illustrate their appearance. She loved to draw and her wish was someday to have a school to teach drawing.
Anna was allowed to roam freely with her brother since her father was so absorbed in his own work. Left to her own devices she followed her brother around doing things a girl wouldn’t normally do nor did she have the guiding hand of a woman to teach her proper deportment. Anna long fended for herself. She possessed an inner strength, sensitivity, kind heart, direct and frank speech with a tongue which spoke her thoughts readily.
Her father had an apprentice, a Mr. Rawlins, who saw the inner beauty and grace the willowy Anna possessed, even though she dressed very shabbily. He captured her beauty in several nude drawings, secretly spying on her through a peep-hole into her bedroom. After Anna’s father passed, Mr. Rawlins no longer was employed. He sold them to Marquess of Henshaw. The marquees knew if he had an additional painting of her posed nude with him, he would be famous. He was a man craving attention by the ton. Once Anna was approached by Marquess of Henshaw with the drawings, she fled and ‘hid’ in the lower levels of a school of young ladies, doing menial sewing, dressing in baggy clothes so no one would find her. Her plan was to make enough money for a journey to live with her aunt. She saw her ruin in those drawings. Who would believe she hadn’t posed for the nudes?
Fate had a kinder destiny for her. Elizabeth Tarrington, a rather precocious and devious child acted improperly one too many times and was sent home to her guardian, Viscount, Will Halifax, Lord Grandville. They asked Anna to chaperone her to his estate and return to the school.
But Lord Grandville was not the kind man Elizabeth remembered years before. Widowed a year, his heart was torn, his spirit in tatters and he was one miserable creature whose temper simmered, ready to explode if provoked. He had dismissed society, no social niceties and remained at Stillwell doing manual work.
When his young ward, Elizabeth, came to Stillwell, he was much the monster he’d become. Anna, with her spirit of right and frank speech, championed Elizabeth and told him he wasn’t fair with the girl. This was a great scene with spitting words from Lord Grandville ending in propositioning her, just out of the blue. Yes, indeed, a great start to a loving relationship, don’t you think?
Chaos further ensues when Lord Grandville’s stepmother comes for a visit as well as his younger brother Tommy. The house is full of guests where previously there were none. Lord Granville detests his stepmother. His world is unraveling and reader, it couldn’t happen to a more deserving man!
Now, dare he face his demons? Can Anna escape her ruination? Will Elizabeth find peace at Stillwell? Can Judith, Will’s stepmother soften Lord Grandville’s heart?
About the Author: (taken from Goodreads.com) Emily Greenwood worked for a number of years as a writer, crafting newsletters and fundraising brochures, but she far prefers writing playful love stories set in Regency England, and she thinks romance novels are the chocolate of literature. A Golden Heart finalist, she lives in Maryland with her husband and two daughters.