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Have you given too much to a partner, thinking he/she would honor a verbal condition of engagement, only to find you dropped cold? Our poor heroine has had this happyen and in this story suffers from those ill-fated choices.<br/><br/>Carlotta Ennis, we learned in book 2 had been a mistress to one Gregory Blankenship who is quite the rake and filthy rich. It was my intention to disfavor her, not because of being a mistress, but from outward appearance she was a women who took advantage. She had been a widow for six years losing her husband just after giving birth to their son. Not in good health and knowing nothing about rearing a child she had her son raised by her grandmother. She lived on very little each quarter, hardly making ends meet. In need of a husband she met Gregory. Now Carlotta was an extremely beautiful women and quite passionate and had fallen in love with his lordship. Before they had started this relationship she had told him she expected nothing less than marriage. She had been close to catching Gregory, but he suddenly fell in love with another.<br/><br/>Broken and devastated she walked away from her lover with little dignity. Her severance pay, so to speak, didn’t last forever. At the end of hope, Lord Rutledge, appears, and feeling he was responsible for her husband’s death on the battlefield (shows he’s one honorable man), pays her debts, sets her in a townhouse and sends for her six year old son. He, too, was extremely wealthy having just inherited his title. Carlotta thought she had played her cards well. She felt he was responsible for her husband’s death, so why not take advantage of that fact? Here I thought she was less than honorable.<br/><br/>Lord Rutledge had known Carlotta for he was in the same regiment as her husband Stephen when they were on the Peninsula. Lord Rutledge would not admit it allowed, but he had always admired Carlotta’s beauty. Feeling guilty for making her a widow, he searched her out, discovering her living in Bath.<br/><br/>Lord Rutledge had dreams of a family, settling down. He spent considerable time in the company of Carlotta after he procured her son for he was a lonely man, who had always had feelings for Carlotta. One evening, he blurted out he wanted to marry her, surprising even himself for he knew he wanted a love match and knew Carlotta didn’t love him. She may need him, but not love him. Immediately taking advantage, she acquiesced, next directing her efforts to get his lordship out of Bath as soon as possible before he hears the truth about her.<br/><br/>Carlotta fit in amazingly well at his country estate, Yarmouth Hall. She dare not entertain socially. However, during this time, Carlotta began to change. She admired and respected her new husband. But admiration and respect doth not a good marriage make!<br/><br/>Lord Rutledge hoped to get Carlotta to love him. Carlotta wanted to keep her secret being a mistress from Lord Rutledge, for she knew if he had known, he would not have married her.<br/><br/>Beware of secrets in a relationship. When found out their hurt will destroy everything good. Carlotta learned to love again. Lord Rutledge had succeeded in his quest. He had gotten his dream love match after all. Then the sky falls. All is broken. Nothing can be mended. I cried buckets here.<br/><br/>A story of love, yes, but it also was a story of self-discovery for Carlotta. She found self-worth and self-love, able to care for her son, bond as a mother should, interact with those who worked for her husband and felt needed and respected in her own right. She discovered she could love, and love passionately a man, who became much more than the means to comfortable living.<br/><br/>Narrator Rosalind Ashford continues to entertain with her thoroughly proper Regency voice. Ms. Bolen writes with a Regency voice while Ms. Ashford is perfect for the telling.
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This is a great book; this is the third book in The Brides of Bath series written by Cheryl Bolen and narrated by Rosalind Ashford. Life had indeed smiled upon Lord James Rutledge. A former soldier, his life was spared when his captain took the bullet meant for him. Then, after the war, he inherited vast wealth and a title from an uncle he never knew. Now he has come to Bath to make amends to his captain's beautiful widow and has won her hand in marriage. The lovely purple-clad, lavender-eyed widow's gratitude toward James quickly blossoms into a powerful love. This is a great book with a wonderful story and well developed characters. This book will keep you reading long into the night. This was such a great read and full of surprises.<br/>The narrator Rosalind Ashford did a great job with this book. She did a great job with the different voices of each character in this book. It was very easy to listen to in one sitting. I didn’t want to stop listening until the end. <br/>If you are looking for a great book with great characters then you need to listen to this book. I am looking forward to listening to the next book by this author and narrator. <br/>A Review copy was provided to me in exchange for a fair and honest review. The free book held no determination on my personal review.