Handsome, wealthy, and well-born, Jonas Tallent has everything a gentleman needs to enjoy London society to the fullest – and he has. He’s played cards until dawn, flirted with eligible young ladies, and made love to some ineligible ones.
But now he’s restless, bored with the mindless frivolity and careless pleasure, so its with a sense of relief that he takes up the reins of his family’s estate in rural Devon. His most pressing need is to hire a new manager for the inn–the center of village life. Such a small task, yet he discovers few decent applicants are willing to live in a quiet country backwater.
Then genteel but impoverished Miss Emily Beauregard applies for the position. Jonas’s initial response is an emphatic “no!” Ladies, especially one as attractive as Emily, belong in the ballroom or the bedroom, not running an inn. But with no alternatives, he grudgingly allows Emily to try, and she rapidly proves herself worthy, resurrecting the inn with tact and skill.
But Em has a secret. Its not only the need to provide for herself and her orphaned siblings that has brought her to Devon. She’s surreptitiously searching for a family treasure hidden in the village, the only clues to its location a cryptic rhyme handed down through the generations. Emily is determined to solve the puzzle, find the treasure and reinstate her family to its rightful place in society.
Yet Em hasn’t bargained on Jonas. His experience is temptation, his attentions irresistible, and he’s determined to aid her in her quest. He eventually persuades her to trust him, and together they unravel the clues . But someone else is watching, waiting, and once the family legacy is unearthed, the villain strikes, threatening Em, her family, and the love she and Jonas have discovered in each others’ arms.
REVIEW: I wasn’t sure if I was going to like this book. Having been disappointed in the last book that was related but yet not related to the Cynsters I put off reading this book. On a recent Stephanie Laurens bing I re-read all the Cynster books, and decided to finish off the series with the latest Cynster family book.
I liked Jonas in Lucifer’s book All about Love, but never really thought much about him, besides that. There was never a glimpse of him in the other books, he wasn’t friends with Dillon (What Price Love), Charlie (The Taste of Innocence), and Gerrard (The Truth about Love). So when I picked up this book it was like the other books hadn’t happened.
Jonas is a man that knows what his role in life is. He will take over his father’s role in the village as magistrate, as well as all of this other business endeavors and become Lord of the Manor. However his father is still alive and kicking. Bored with the London scene he returns to Cloyton, just as his father has to leave to help take care of family, leaving him in charge of everything.
The first order of business is finding someone to run the inn. Finding someone to take over managing the inn has become the bane of his exisetence, so when Em walks in asking for the job, he decides to give it her.
Emily has an agenda of her own. She is there looking for the means to protect her family. She has spent the last several years acting as a servant for her greedy uncle, all the while bidding her time till her 25th birthday, when she becomes the sole guardian of all her siblings. That time has come and now she is proceeding to the next step in her plan. She never expected to find Jonas all that he demands from her.
There are times I think when strong women can rub you the wrong way, and there were times when Emily really got on my nerves with her single mindedness. She felt things for Jonas that she had never felt before, and had no clue how to deal with, and she couldn’t talk to her sister because she was in love with the vicar, and wasn’t fighting it. The only other woman that she could confide in if she chose was Jonas sister.
In the other Cynster books the hero at least I think has always been at the core of the story and we get much more form his perspective. In this story however I didn’t get that. It felt more like Jonas knew who he was, what his role was and what he wanted from Emily, once he figured out what it was exactly that he wanted from her. This book felt and read, at least to me, more about Emily and what she wanted, almost like a self discovery book. The romance and heat between them almost secondary to her real goal and aim.
Overall I enjoyed the book, especially as I had no real expectations of the book, having waited several months to pick it up after it had come out, when I normally by her books hot off the shelves, at least the paperback ones. It isn’t my favorite in the series, but it is a good one.
I give this book a 4 out of 5.
Temptation and Surrender
Temptation and Surrender
Cynster Family bk 16