“You see,” Edmund began, “certain people have entrusted their . . . er . . . trust to me. And I must fulfill that trust. And now is the time that the trust which they have entrusted –“
“Oh, stop,” Jane cut him off. “You’ll do yourself an injury if you try to end that sentence.”
I’m resisting the urge to quote all the good bits, because they’re better in context anyway, right? But if you’re looking for something light and Christmasy, but neither too fluffy nor too sentimental, then you could do lots worse than SEASON FOR SCANDAL by Theresa Romain.
Jane is a delightful protagonist: confident and bold when she borrows her cousin’s rubies and sneaks off to a gambling hell to raise a stake so she can be independent, but wistfully insecure about how to cope when her kind, considerate, unfailingly polite husband doesn’t love her.
Edmund really doesn’t feel that he has the right to love anyone, considering what a trick he played on Jane by marrying her without telling her about his clouded past.
And from there you can immediately see the broad outlines of the plot, right? The ton is glittery; the villain is quite villainous; the secret buried in Edmund’s past, when we finally learn the details, is definitely dark; the secondary characters are truly appealing; and the dialogue made me laugh out loud several times.
All that, plus holly and mistletoe and brown paper packages tied up with strings.
This was a good choice for reading while I was also working through a frustrating couple of scenes in my current WIP. I’m not actually done with the frustrating part, either — not at all to my surprise, I am fighting with Chapter Five, which is a cursed region in every. Single. Work. Ever. I think maybe next time I will just skip from Chapter Four to Chapter Seven and see if that helps.
ANYWAY, since I’m still working on that, I have now started SEASON FOR TEMPTATION. I see that poor James has gone and gotten himself engaged to quite the wrong girl. I wonder how this is going to work out, since his fiancee, Louisa, seems perfectly nice, though clearly she is all wrong for James . . .