He’s been a bad, bad rake—and it takes a governess to teach him a lesson
The accidental governess.
After her livelihood slips through her fingers, Alexandra Mountbatten takes on an impossible post: transforming a pair of wild orphans into proper young ladies. However, the girls don’t need discipline. They need a loving home. Try telling that to their guardian, Chase Reynaud: duke’s heir in the streets and devil in the sheets. The ladies of London have tried—and failed—to make him settle down. Somehow, Alexandra must reach his heart... without risking her own.
The infamous rake.
Like any self-respecting libertine, Chase lives by one rule: no attachments. When a stubborn little governess tries to reform him, he decides to give her an education—in pleasure. That should prove he can’t be tamed. But Alexandra is more than he bargained for: clever, perceptive, passionate. She refuses to see him as a lost cause. Soon the walls around Chase’s heart are crumbling... and he’s in danger of falling, hard.
This is my first title by Tessa Dare, and I can definitely say it won't be my last.
There are a whole bunch of ways to deal with the forced propriety that keeps the hero and heroine in a historical romance from spending a lot of alone time together. Some of them work well, and others of them feel like complete filler. I have mentioned before, and I am mentioning here again, that this is a difficult balance, as often there are societal constraints that keep the couple from spending a lot of time alone, and this is one of the hurdles you have to work around in order for the romance to be fulfilling, yet still feel that it is set in a historical time period.
In this case, Alexandra and Chase have a bit of a mistaken identity issue. She is not the governess he so desperately needs to help him care for the 2 young girls who have come to him as ward of his estate. Alexandra is not, however, a governess and refuses his offer, no matter how much money he states he is willing to pay. Following a series of mishaps, she finds herself back at his door and accepting, albeit reluctantly, the position of governess.
Hilarity, mishaps, funerals for dolls (which were really quite clever) and sexual attraction ensue. And, in the middle of all of this, I found myself charmed by all of the characters.
While I do see the need for them in the story, I did think that the children were featured a little too strongly and often pulled away from the central story. That said, in a historical romance, you have to be careful to make sure there is enough plot...as there is not always the possibility of a lot of romance.
I did enjoy this title, I recommend it, and I will be reading others by this author.