Reviewer: Connie Payne
Title: In for a Penny
Author: Rose Lerner
Release Date: March 2010
Genre/Sub-genre: Historical Romance
Year/Setting: Regency England
Overall Rating: 4.25
Sexual Content Rating: Sensual/Sexual (two scenes)
Language (Profanity/Slang) Content Rating: Mild
Violent Content Rating: Minimal
Rose's Website: www.roselerner.com
He was a young lord without a care in the world-drinking and carousing nightly-until his father’s recklessness provides Lord Nevinstoke (Nev) with a new title and puts him in a position of great responsibility. In a position of righting wrongs and settling seemingly insurmountable debts.
There’s no hope for him or his family…they’re beyond ruined unless he marries an heiress. Miss Penelope Brown comes to mind. He met her weeks earlier at a society "do" and was quite taken with her, curiously so. Perhaps she can, will, help him out of this Mess. He has no other recourse but to present his case.
Penelope surprises even herself when she agrees to marry Lord Nevinstoke. What has she done? Things are more than awkward between them. She’s a Cit, he’s nobility. What business does she have believing she can raise her station in life? But she’s drawn to him, helplessly so. And he did make a promise to try and make her happy. At least she has that.
Neither dreamed things would be as bad as they were at the Loweston estate; there’s desperate unrest with the tenants, a self-righteous vicar, poor harvests, and much distrust and derision of the gentry. Both Penelope and Nev are swimming in water that is churning and deep. No matter what they do to try and make things right for themselves, the family, or the tenants, things seem to go awry.
Their relationship becomes even more strained, if that’s possible. Misunderstandings and mistaken assumptions escalate their troubles. Add to the confusion an outside force who tries to create more unrest. It becomes almost impossible to believe they will ever be able to right the wrongs or even have a semblance of a HEA.
Both Penelope and Nev are in positions which are foreign to them. They are sadly struggling to be what they are expected to be. The unfamiliar circumstances they find themselves in call up every ounce of the reader’s sympathy. Supporting characters add their two cents and create even more turmoil for Penelope and Nev and the reader.
Ms. Lerner has penned a complex multi-layered romance. Heartfelt hopes struggle with a sense of hopelessness. Good intentions are ostensibly defeated by devious plots and plans. Need and desire are all but overpowered by fear. Desperation colors thoughts and emotions. Drama somehow creates its own form of romance.
In for a Penny is a romance that is unbelievably gripping and angst ridden yet there are rays of light, giving the characters (and reader) a glimmer of hope for the future, for the HEA. While reading this story you can almost believe that this was how it was.
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