Read an excerpt: here
Annabel's last name may be Winslow, but when her maternal grandmother arranges to 'clean her up and get her married', all in London refer to her as 'The Vicker's girl'. It isn't a season that awaits her in London, but the overweight, hygienically challenged and elderly Lord Newbury. To put it simply: Annabel's family needed money. Lord Newbury has money. Annabel is the eldest daughter and thus, the responsibility to marry and marry well is laid at her doorstep. The Vicker's have a long-standing friendship with Lord Newbury and an alliance was desired. Lord Newbury needed an heir. And most important of all: Annabel had big hips. Annabel knew she had no real say in whom she would marry, but Lord Newbury becomes more and more unsavory by the moment. At a ball, after Lord Newbury forces some of his amorous attentions on Annabel, she flees to the the gardens and then to a heath in the back.
Sebastian, fresh and relaxed from a recently amorous assignation, doesn't expect to be stumbled across (literally) by a virginal young miss. He also doesn't expect for her to ask for a kiss. But he obliges her request and our dance of wills and circumstance begin.
Sebastian doesn't learn of Annabel's 'attachment' to Lord Newbury until the night he is punched in the face and spat on unawares by his uncle. It is a distressing family riff, and with both men avoiding Annabel, she is becomeing acquainted with social scorn with dizzying quickness as a result. Feeling responsible, Sebastian decides to help her out and 'play interest' in her so that she will be accepted again in the bosom of society.
The play-acting becomes a little to real, and when Lord Newbury suddenly rekindles an interest in Annabel, she will have to decide if 'Ten Things' are enough reasons to abandon the security and position Newbury's offer presents; and possibly find eleven or more things to love about Sebastian.
::Rating:: 3 1/2 "Aww's" ::Rating::
My Favorite Part of the Book: Is when Annabel is distraught after she sees Lord Newbury ascend the stair to the Vicker's home after days of ignoring her. She knows he means to propose marriage if only to save his reputation, but she can't face that reality just yet; and when Lady Olivia Valentine happens across her, she offers to let Annabel hide out for the afternoon at her home. Lady Olivia is married to Sebastian's cousin and Sebastian spends a lot of time at their house. When he stops by per usual, he is shocked to find Annabel in tears and provides her with some comfort (and a solution) from her woes.
Sebastian, Sebastian, Sebastian. His secret came out of left feild, although I should have had an idea from when he made his appearance in 'What Happens In London'. He is a bit melodramatic to me, but I still loved his caring and care-free nature. Annabel was an entertaining character, with her hilarious tendency to state funny facts in lists of ten's. The plot was one that had it's fair share of dark moments.I felt that the resolution (Annabel's conviction that no on will make her marry Newbury and that she loved Sebastian) was reached a little too swiftly, but I definitely enjoyed the ride. Sadly, this novel didn't include as much heat as we are use to in most JQ's, and I get the impression that JQ spent so much time developing the plot, that when she got to the end of the book and realized the Hero and Heroine didn't 'share relations' yet, she just threw it in there. It messed up the flow of the book after the climax had came and went, and the rushed quality towards the end was sadly noticeable. But don't let that turn you off to an admirably entertaining novel. It's worth the read, trust me.
*Also from the Bevelstoke Series:
'The Secret Diaries Of Miranda Cheever' & 'What Happens In London'
- 'The Secret Diaries Of Miranda Cheever' is a spectacular book. I truly loved it!
-My Review of 'What Happens In London' can be found: here