cover image Royal’s Bride

Royal’s Bride

Kat Martin, . . Mira, $7.99 (408pp) ISBN 978-0-7783-2642-7

Set in 1854 England, this steamy trilogy opener from bestseller Martin (Heart of Courage ) is an enjoyable mixture of tension and romance. Royal Dewar, the dashing duke of Bransford, promised his dying father that he would marry for money and restore the family fortune, and he dutifully proposes to wealthy Jocelyn Caulfield. His heart, however, belongs to Jocelyn’s penniless but beautiful cousin, Lily Moran. Fiercely independent Lily tells Royal of her criminal past, but instead of spurning her, he asks her help with a scheme to recover the money his father lost to a swindler. As Lily and Royal struggle to resist their passion, haughty Jocelyn finds unexpected love with a man below her station. Though the conflict ties up too neatly and plot holes diminish the suspense, the romance smolders enough to make the next books worth waiting for. (Sept.)