She dares all for love: The widow of a soldier, Lady Victoria March travels to England to meet her late husband’s relations for the first time. She’s astonished by her reception: suspicion and insults abound. However, Lady March cannot leave. She’s on a mission that has everything to do with family and the things that bind them together.
Written by: Gayle Buck
First published: 1991
We first meet LADY VICTORIA MARCH and LORD DAMION ST CLAIRE in a hostelry – she is traveling in England for the first time to visit family, or perhaps friends? There’s a bit of a mystery there initially as to what she is doing in England.
And he? Well this is a Regency romance of its time – Lord St Claire is obviously a rake who is “at once haughty and compelling”. He’s keen to find out what Victoria is doing in England and takes control of her situation almost immediately.
What did I like about the book?
Although less forceful than some heroines, Victoria stands up for herself and is capable of looking after herself as well.
She is depicted as loving her first husband and although she (obviously) falls in love again, there’s no sudden diminishing of him in her memory.
The female nemesis isn’t all evil and in fact there’s some nice scenes between her and Victoria later in the book.
What did I not like about the book?
The ‘Misunderstanding’ seemed silly and definitely something that could have been worked out simply by talking to each other.
Also there’s a lot of talk during the book of Victoria’s property back in Spain, and her desire to return. It’s obviously important to her and yet at the end of the book that is all forgotten.
It all seemed a bit too pat – one minute she’s keen to return to a place she loves, and the next she’s forgotten all about it thanks to her new love. I would have liked a bit more acknowledgement about what she was giving up, particularly from Damion.
So how did I feel at the end?
That’s really the important thing isn’t it? Did I feel the HEA was right? Was I left with a warm and fuzzy feeling or wishing I could get my money back?
Well, apart from my disappointment about how Victoria’s return to Spain was handled, I really liked the HEA. The final scene with Victoria’s nemesis and Damion was subtle and humourous. And yes, the misunderstanding was all cleared up thanks to some simple conversations.
I’ve re-read The Demon Rake a few times so although I’m not left with a warm and fuzzy feeling I definitely don’t want my money back.