ABOUT THE BOOK
An imperfect proposal…
But a perfect match?
Major James Rossington, Viscount Austerfield, survived Waterloo, but can he survive the Season as London’s most eligible bachelor? Convinced his battle scars make him unlovable, and to escape Society’s matchmakers, Ross proposes a wedding in name only to shy, sensible Carenza Bettridge. Liberated from her cruel stepmother and bullying half-sisters, she blossoms into a confident, altogether desirable woman. He promised Carenza a convenient marriage, but inconveniently finds himself wanting more…
Welcome to my tour spot for Cinderella and the Scarred Viscount by Sarah Mallory hosted by Rachel’s Random Resources. This is my first Mallory book which is a delightful spin on the Cinderella fairy tale filled with an evil stepmother, evil stepsisters, and a gruff and scarred Viscount set to fall for the beautiful, kind, and bullied “old maid”.
Carenza Bettridge has sacrificed her life for her ill father by taking care of him in a divided household. Carenza’s selfish stepmother and stepsisters have nothing to do with the running of the house. That all falls on Carenza’s shoulders as she is treated like a servant. Her father meant well, but he sees the mistake he made with his eldest daughter when the very eligible Major James “Ross” Rossington, Viscount Austerfield comes to visit.
Ross is in the uncomfortable and unfavorable position of looking for a wife. As he gives in to his sister and aunt’s unwavering pressure to find a suitable woman for his partner in life, he finds himself visiting the Bettridge estate. A household filled with two insipid Bettridge sisters and a mother who force themselves to tolerate his scarred face to become a Viscountess. After changing his mind and being determined to leave, he meets an intriguing third sister who is treated abominably by the women, and who prefers to stay away from him. She is the first woman to make him feel comfortable in her presence. Perhaps her father’s offer of a marriage of convenience isn’t so bad after all.
Carenza is a kind and generous person who finds herself undeserving of Ross due to the constant criticism of her stepmother and stepsisters. But with some assurances from her father that he will be taken care of without her, she agrees to Ross’s unconventional proposal. Ross is scarred not only on the outside but the inside as well. As a survivor of Waterloo, he has nightmares and PTSD-related episodes that convince him he is unworthy of any loving relationship so he agrees to the marriage of convenience. Their growing attraction and ease in each other’s company make for a lovely partnership as they finally see their worth and let go of their insecurities to become “a perfectly imperfect match”.
Ross’s sister Dido is a delight as she denigrates her greedy and awful cousin Amos who is due to inherit Ross’s estate if Ross doesn’t provide an heir. Amos finds every chance he can get to insult both Ross and Carenza, and he has some nasty deeds up his sleeves.
I am happy to recommend this charming Regency romance with intriguing characters, a bit of suspense, and serious subject matter such as bullying and PTSD.
Thank you to Ms. Mallory for giving me the opportunity to read this book with no expectation of a positive review.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sarah Mallory is an award-winning author who has published more than 30 historical romances with Harlequin Mills & Boon. She loves history, especially the Georgian and Regency. She won the prestigious RoNA Rose Award from the Romantic Novelists Association in 2012 and 2013. Sarah also writes romantic historical adventures as Melinda Hammond. Sarah lived for many years on the Yorkshire Pennines, taking inspiration from the wild and rugged moors. Then in 2018 she fell in love with Scotland and ran away to live on the rugged North West Coast, which is proving even more inspiring.
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