The Spring Bride

Anne Gracie. Berkley, $7.99 mass market (336p) ISBN 978-0-425-25927-6

Gracie (The Winter Bride) provides an enchanting spin on Regency tropes with the romance of pragmatic Jane Chance and dashing, disguised gentleman Zachary Black. Jane and her sister, Abby, grew up in poverty; Jane’s marriage goal is stability, not love. Zach, who has spent 12 years conducting continental espionage in the guise of a rover and pirate, discovers he has been declared dead by his greedy cousin—and he’s suspected of murdering his father’s second wife, Cecily, whom he escorted to Wales just days before an unidentifiable woman’s body was discovered on his father’s estate. A random encounter with a stray dog and a pack of ruffians thrusts Jane and Zach together, challenging her desire to avoid romance and Zach’s intention of leaving England again as soon as he clears his name. Complicating matters further, Jane accepts a marriage proposal from the unremarkable and stodgy but wealthy Lord Cambury, while Zach employs investigators to search for Cecily. Gracie layers in multiple stories of hidden identities and warns against judging by appearance, enhancing the sweet seasonal love story. Agent: Nancy Yost, Nancy Yost Literary Agency. (June)
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