cover image My Favorite Marquess

My Favorite Marquess

Alexandra Bassett, . . Zebra, $6.99 (416pp) ISBN 978-0-8217-7787-9

Bassett's latest, a winning Regency, begins quietly enough: on her way to England's Cornish coast to claim Trembledown, the derelict estate she inherited after her husband's death, Violet Treacher thinks her only real trouble is the Marquess of St. Just, Sebastian, who has aggressively pursued the property. That's before Violet is snatched from her carriage by notorious smuggler Robert the Brute, who forces her to spend a night with him in a coastal cave. There, animosity and a bit of liquor lead to a night of passion the likes of which Violet had never experienced during her loveless marriage. Still shaken, Violet is released by the masked Brute the next morning, just in time to play host to the haughty, pretentious Sebastian—who, unbeknownst to her, is the Brute himself. His condescension heightens Violet's determination to restore Trembledown, even if she must do the work herself, and sets the stage for much sparring between the two headstrong leads. Several characters from Bassett's His Chosen Bride take supporting roles, giving balance to this rollicking tale of passionate sex and modest skullduggery. (July)