A man devastated by loveAfter three years of carousing and debauchery, Alex Cartwright, heir to the Duke of Hastings, has put his life back in order. Having embraced sobriety for two years, he has no intention of revisiting the past or risking his heart again. But the return of the very woman who introduced him to the darkest side of hell brings not only the painful, haunting memories of bittersweet love and abandonment, but the son he never knew he had....A woman silenced by secretsThreatened by the revelation of a secret that could destroy her family's place in society and forever tarnish a dukedom, Charlotte fled England on her wedding day five years ago. Now, although it appears that secret is safe, when Alex discovers her other secret-their son-Charlotte has an altogether different battle ahead. She must now fight one love to hold onto the other-the man whose touch still makes her burn, for the child who is her very world.
Charlotte Rutherford abandoned Alex Cartwright at the altar five years ago and ran away to America. Not because she didn't love him, but because she loved him too much to expose him to the censure that would result if the secret of her parentage were revealed. Having received a letter that her twin sister is deathly ill, Charlotte is back in England, with her four-year-old son, Nicholas-Alex's son. The letter, of course, is false, but Charlotte's return sets into motion a chain of events that no force on earth can stop. Alex, heir to the Duke of Hastings, uses his considerable power to claim his son. Yet instead of a custody battle, he chooses to falsify their marriage, reclaiming Charlotte as well. Charlotte had fled because she was being blackmailed over a family secret, and everything she loves is now threatened until the blackmailer is revealed. Verdict Runaway brides, secret babies, blackmail, and alcoholism would be enough drama for one story all by themselves. In this latest from Kendall (A Taste of Desire), all of that is mere backstory. What drive this surprisingly deep novel are its revelations and their aftermath: sibling rivalry and jealousy, ancestral skeletons, and the question of whether love can persevere despite society's strictures. Readers who enjoy family dramas more than ton balls will love this one. Highly recommended for historical romance fans.-Marlene Harris, Reading Reality LLC (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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April 01, 2012
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