Let me say straight off, it was not my idea to trap England's greatest hero and most eligible bachelor, the Earl of Greystone, into marrying me. My uncle, Lord Charlwood, was the moving force behind that little plot. If my father hadn't been murdered and left me in Charlwood's power, none of this would have happened.
So now I am Lady Greystone, a countess and a wife. Learning to be the first is not that difficult. Learning to be the second would be much easier if only I weren't in danger of tumbling head over heels in love with the one person who is beyond my reach-my husband.
If I cannot win Adrian's love, however, I am determined to win vengeance for my father. I have vowed to unmask his murderer and I don't care what kind of danger I may court in doing so. If you, Gentle Reader, would like to find out how my various problems unravel themselves, read on.
With sincere affection,
Kate, Countess of Greystone
I like books written in the first person, it's easier to feel some empathy towards the main character but at the same time the fact that you know them better doesn't mean that are easier to like. I did like the premise of this book very much, it is a murder mystery combined with a forced marriage plot and the characters seemed decent enough to make the story work.
The main character is Kate. A young girl of 18, recently orphaned who goes to live with her uncle. She suspects her father has been murdered but has no means to investigate at first. Her uncle, Charlwood, hates the Earl of Greystone and to get his revenge forces a wedding between Kate and Greystone with the goal ruin the Earl's political aspirations since Kate is socially a nobody. Charwood's plan is foiled though as Kate and Greystone do try to make the marriage work and she ends up being accepted by society. Besides have to learn to live with her husband Kate doesn't give up on her plans to find what really happened to her father.
My main problem with the story was the heroine, Kate. She falls in love with her husband but doesn't believe he can love her after being forced to marry so she never reveals her love to him. At the same time that she feels guilty for having ruined his chance to find love (her was almost betrothed to another woman), she attacks the other woman telling that Greystone is now hers so she can stop pining for him. To make matters worse she confides in Harry (Greystone's brother) and relies on him to help her find the truth about her father's death but she never tells any of that to her husband nor trusts him with what she is doing. This leads him to be jealous of the Harry / Kate relationship and she seems the only one oblivious to his feelings.
So, while I felt the story had potential, the fact that I didn't like Kate all that much and I felt she should have understood her husband a bit better and a bit sooner leads me to give this one a lower grade than I would otherwise have given.