Review: Ravishing the Heiress – Sherry Thomas
Millicent understands the terms of her arranged marriage all too well. She gets to be a Countess by marrying an impoverished Earl. And in return, the Earl Fitzhugh receives the benefit of her vast wealth, saving his family from bankruptcy. Because of her youth, they have agreed to wait eight years before consummating the marriage—and then, only to beget an heir. After which, they will lead separate lives.
It is a most sensible arrangement. Except for one little thing. Somehow Millie has fallen head over heels in love with her husband. Her husband, who has become her very best friend, but nothing more… Her husband, who plans to reunite with his childhood sweetheart, the beautiful and newly widowed Isabelle, as soon as he has honored the pact with his wife…
As the hour they truly become husband-and-wife draws near, both Millie and Fitzhugh must face the truth in their hearts. Has their pact bred only a great friendship—or has it, without either of them quite noticing, given rise to a great love?
Sherry Thomas is a lovely writer and is the author of one of my favourite historical romance novels – Not Quite a Husband. She’s an auto-buy author for me. Ravishing the Heiress is the second book in the Fitzhugh trilogy, after Beguiling the Beauty. Millicent and Hugh were introduced in the first book but it’s not necessary to have read the first story to enjoy the second.
Millicent and Hugh have been married eight years. Their union is an arranged marriage of convenience. As a young man Hugh inherited an impoverished and debt-ridden earldom, forcing him to marry Millie for her vast wealth. At the time of the marriage Hugh was both bitter and heartbroken because circumstances have forced him to leave Isabelle, the woman he loved.
Millie was raised to assume to role of lady of the manor. She knew her fate was to marry her the man her father selected and is realistic enough to understand that she has little choice in the matter. She’s rather shocked to fall head over heels for Hugh at first sight.
Millie’s and Hugh’s story is told through scenes set both in their present and over the years of their marriage as they built a life together .Ravishing the Heiress is a slow romance – by choice the H/h have lived a platonic marriage – they are friends who respect and admire each other. The force of change in their lives is the return of Isabelle, Hugh’s childhood sweetheart.
I really enjoyed this beautifully written story. The characters and their back stories are exceptionally well developed. Millie is a sympathetic character and Hugh though somewhat tiresome initially, is also enjoyable. It’s refreshing to read a story where the characters respect and admire each other. The glimpses into how Millie and Hugh built their life together were very well done. I felt the ending was a little abrupt, but that’s a little grumble in an otherwise positive review. If you appreciate slow and sweet romance novels, then this is the book for you.
My Rating: 7.5/10