Clio is a marriageable young woman, betrothed to a diplomat who is also a marquess. It isn't going well. After eight years of delays she's pretty much had it and doesn't have to put up with it anymore, because she has inherited a castle of her very own. So now her would-be-brother-in-law finds himself in the unfortunate position of trying to convince her to go through with the marriage, and when she states clearly that she has no interest in wedding plans, he has to take on all that as well.
As a series concept, giving castles to various single women is genius. Who doesn't love castles? Real life is sadly lacking in women receiving property in their own right, let alone castles that they can rebuild or redecorate to suit themselves. Why isn't there a genre about real estate? Finding true lasting love is good and all, but land lasts for ever. Surely that's part of the appeal of <u>Gone With the Wind</u>? So much real property in Scarlett's hands.
This is the novel for the woman who doesn't care about The Wedding. I know I'm not the only one who cared about nothing other than the tastiness of the cake (devil's food, and you?). Dare has tremendous fun making her heroine indifferent to the whole marriage business in favor of creating a business plan that makes best use of her new estate. And while the tropes are being upended, Dare gives us a professional boxing manager as wedding planner.
Historically, I have no idea what time frame this is supposed to be, nor do I care. There's an old and beloved dog, did I mention that? He puts me in mind of<u>Three Men in A Boat</u> which is a happy place to be.