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Thursday, April 24, 2014

ARC Review: The Affair by Lily Maxton

Elizabeth is the Countess of Thornhill and a widow. She has moved back in with her family. Her late husband let his family estate fall into disrepair. After enduring an unhappy marriage, Elizabeth inherited nothing. She’s glad to be free and decides to walk home after a shopping trip. Caught in the rain, she dashes to seek cover in a doorway. She collides with a man, the owner of Cameron’s Lending Library and Booksellers. He offers her tea and warmth by the fire. She’s heard of her rakish host. Rumors have swirled around Cale Cameron after his affair with a less than discreet duchess. When Elizabeth’s late husband’s cousin arrives at a ball, she dances with him. Her sisters’ place bets about her marriage prospects. Her mother would be delighted to see Elizabeth stay a countess. Cale is at the same dance. He catches Elizabeth outside. She tells him things she has never admitted. She’s glad her husband died and there were no children. He invites her to his dinner party for authors. She slips out to attend it. Her sisters know she isn't meeting with the cousin, who has proposed. To help her family, she must marry well. Instead she takes a cottage outside of London. Cale follows with his own plans for their future.

Cale isn't the typical historical hero. He’s a shopkeeper and orphan who built a life for himself. Elizabeth is caught in society’s opinion of widows. She must mourn and be content to be alone. Both want to break free from these constricts and choose their own paths. Both are interested in reading and meeting people who expand their world views.

Elizabeth’s sisters have small parts in the novella. The fact that they wager about Elizabeth’s men is funny. A bit of a modern twist. The women rebel against the system and slowly chip away at it. Enjoyable read.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

Purchase: | Amazon | B&N |


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