“The Virgin and the Viscount” by Charis Michaels was my first read by this author. I found her to be very refreshing and entertaining. The first book in the series “ The Earl Next Door (The Bachelor Lords of London, #1) has been on my to-read list and has received good reviews. The plot of the story caught my eye and so did the title.
First, I have to say that Michaels created a very clever and unique plot. Lady Elisabeth Hamilton-Baythes was orphaned suddenly when her parents died in a carriage ride. When this occurred she was momentarily sold as a sex-slave. Bryson Courtland, Viscount Rainsleigh’s father was not the most honorable man and one day he decided to take his son to a brother. Bryson’s father had a popular taste for young virgins but with a last minute switch, Elizabeth ends up in the same room as Bryson. Bryson, being nothing like his father, helps her escape. Fast forward over ten years later, Elizabeth is living with her aunt in London when she hosts a party for a young Viscount known to be on the hunt for a wife. Elizabeth and her aunt have a unique relationship. At times they are more like sisters than aunt and niece. Elizabeth has become a sort of recluse. She has started a charitable organization that helps young woman escape horrible situations or who are all alone and have no one.
The day of the dinner party Bryson immediately recognizes Elizabeth and she him. Neither mention the incident many years ago, but Bryson has decided that Elizabeth will make the perfect Viscountess. Elizabeth has carried the burden of what happened years ago and is solely devoted to her charity. When Bryson makes his intentions clear, she rebukes them and maintains that she is devoted to her charity and that she is applying for the prize money he is offering to the charity he deems worthy. Bryson is not easily deterred and sets out to win Elizabeth.
I thought that this book had a little of everything. I really like both the hero and the heroine. I thought that Elizabeth carried her secret a little too far and much would have been avoided if she had confronted Bryson earlier. I also don’t understand why they waited so long to finally come clean with one another. I really enjoyed the funny scenes and witty characters. I loved that the secondary characters were fun and entertaining as well as the main characters. I loved the chemistry between them and was eager to see how the author would bring them together.
This was a fun and touching story. I plan to not only read the previous story but the next one that follows. Michaels was a great author to read.
**ARC provided by Publisher**