Kelly Bowen

Books: Romance | Historical

You're the Earl That I Want (2015)

You're the Earl That I Want (2015)

Set in England in 1818.

Heath Hextall never expected to inherit the Earldom. His only goal had been to increase his family wealth. He needs a wife to take care of the things he doesn't have time for, so he asks one of his best friends for some recommendations.

Lady Rebecca wasn't beautiful in the traditional sense, but she spoke and carried herself with a quiet confidence that was immensely more appealing than any number of pretty faces. He'd found her easy to talk to, and she'd not avoided the entire topic of his business, as many ladies had done in the past, but instead had put intelligent questions to him about a number of aspects.

Lady Josephine Somerhall has been out of the country for years; not only was her return unexpected, but her mind has been broadened a bit more than London society likes to accept.

"They are going to see all that blood. Even a blind man couldn't miss it. Hell, how much blood can possibly be in a body?"

"Ten pints," Joss said from somewhere across from him.

"Ten pints?" Heath repeated faintly.

"For an average-sized man. You can measure it as a percentage of body weight, so children or someone smaller will have a good deal less, of course, but… She trailed off. "Not that that is important at the moment," she muttered.

Languages, on the other hand, had captured her imagination and held it. They were like giant puzzles to be solved and mastered, and she reveled in learning each. There were groups of them that had clearly sprouted from a common base, and those were the easiest to learn. Others seemed creatures unto themselves, with no common denominator, and these were the ones Joss enjoyed the most. The feel of the different sounds on her tongue and the different rhythms and cadences of each. The shapes of the individual characters in alphabets and scripts, like tiny pieces of artwork, which could be linked together to divulge tales and secrets and knowledge.

There were several things I especially liked here. First was that there were good reasons for Joss to have stayed far away from London.

Second, that the woman the Duke of Worth picked out for him was actually perfect for him. I was actually worried about what would happen to her, since she was obviously not the intended HEA.

Thirdly, Joss doesn't have to change for Heath–and Heath doesn't really want her to. He may love her, but he doesn't want to force her to become something just for him.

There were ridiculous bits, because this was a murder mystery as well as a romance, but it was romp ridiculous not OMG I want to kill this idiots ridiculous.

"Now, what shall we toast to?"

"Happy Christmas!" called out one.

"It's not Christmas yet, fool," someone protested.

"Tonight it sure as hell is."

"You can't use hell and Christmas in the same toast," piped up another.

It was fun and enjoyable. (Oh, there was of course boinking.)

Publisher: Forever

Rating: 7.5/10