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Hot hero whose past casts dark shadows over their future

Hot hero whose past casts dark shadows over their future

I love Bella Frances’ voice–the dialogue, the tight writing, the pace. You can’t help but feel for Lady Lucinda, aka Lucie, aka Dante’s “Princess,” who’s strong and vulnerable all at the same time. The emotions and descriptions are original and not generic. 

I love that there’s no initial deal or bargain struck—If you do this, I’ll do that–before the relationship is allowed to start. It just starts. As though they, and it, can’t help themselves. 

And we already know there’s something Dante needs….

I love both the polo playing and English nobility backdrops and the fleshed out families and friends who surround them–including the heroine’s family from hell who actually kind of grow on you, and add to the conflict and the central relationship and make the hero and heroine even more well-rounded in context. 

The writing is contemporary, unique and fresh, which is lovely, but at the same time, if I measure this against my expectations of the Harlequin Presents/Mills and Boon Modern line, then Dante, as hot and gorgeous as he is, and he is, isn’t quite Presents’ alpha enough for me. Shrugs I know! So it’s a bit light on the Presents’ alpha male. And, even though I loved the cast of dysfunctional families and hero-material polo players, and I really did, it does dilute the intensity and emotion slightly in places. It’s also a bit heavy on the love scenes, which felt more Tempted than Presents.  

But, measuring the story against my line-expectations aside, Bella Frances delivers a fast paced, emotional, sexy read with fab dialogue and lovely lines with a hot hero and easy-to-empathise-with heroine.

The hero’s conflict is summed up in one line which made me well up. LOOK AWAY NOW TO AVOID SPOILER “I got lost Lucie. I’ve been lost. For years.” END OF SPOILER. It was lovely to see some closure with Lucie and her mother, Lady Viv, too. Actually, I could quite happily read more of this family and their relationships and step into this Presents’ world again as this book left me wanting more. Here’s hoping!

Four out of five Harlequin Presents’ stars.

The Italian's One-Night Baby by Lynne Graham

The Innocent's Secret Baby by Carol Marinelli

The Innocent's Secret Baby by Carol Marinelli