Title: Confessions of a Royal Bridegroom
Series: The Renegade Royals #2
Author: Vanessa Kelly
Publisher: Kensington Books – Zebra
Release Date: April 1, 2014
Format: eARC via Netgalley
Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | TBD
They are the Renegade Royals, illegitimate sons of the Royal Princes, each finding his rightful place in society–and the woman destined to be his perfect match. . .
Some men are born into scandal. Others pursue it with a passion. Griffin Steele, secret son of the Duke of Cumberland, is guilty on both counts. Yet somehow London’s most notorious scoundrel has been saddled with an abandoned baby boy–and with the unflappable, intriguing spinster summoned to nurse him. . .
Justine Brightmore may be a viscount’s niece, but she’s also a spy’s daughter, determined to safeguard the infant when his suspected royal parentage makes him a target. Yet how to protect herself from the rakish Griffin? Marriage might shield her reputation, but it can only imperil her heart, especially with a groom intent on delicious seduction. . .
“Has all the elements of my favorite novels–a bad boy hero, a spirited heroine, a dash of intrigue, and a sizzling romance. Put her on your auto-buy list; you won’t be disappointed.” –Shana Galen
The story in a nutshell…
When an abandoned baby boy is delivered to Griffin Steele, he hires Justine Brightmore, goddaughter to his mentor, to mind the baby while he solves the mystery surrounding the baby’s true identity and roots. When circumstances force the two into marriage in order to save Justine’s reputation and secure her safety, these two people find themselves in a situation unlike anything they ever expected themselves to be in. They go through a lot of discoveries about themselves, each other, and a future they could not even start to imagine.
What worked for me?
I really love how the whole story progresses. Vanessa Kelly does a really good job laying out the details and the scenes as they build up the mystery. I also love how the feelings between Griffin and Justine developed. It was gradual and built less on attraction, although there was that, but more on understanding and affection, albeit against their will in the beginning.
I love Griffin. He has all these baggage, emotion-wise because of his father who took advantage of his mother and then left her pregnant and ruined. He has no love lost with the ton and his sincere desire is to set off, travel, and leave England behind. But Justine’s entry into his life, as well as the baby’s, has set his life course in unexpected directions, ones which he begrudgingly accepts in the beginning but later on discovers that he wouldn’t have had it any other way.
Justine is a piece of work and I say that with love. I love her stubbornness, her smart-ass and no non-sense character. I love that she can hold her own against Griffin and is no push-over. Being a daughter of a renowned spy and agent of the Crown has offered her a childhood of good memories with a good father but at the same time too many experiences of active and fraught emotions because of her father’s work. All she wants is to live a peaceful existence, preferably in the countryside, away from hustle and bustle of town life. But meeting Griffin has made an impact on her whether she wants to believe it or not.
What didn’t work for me?
I don’t have any major issues on the story although I did think a few times that the mystery surrounding the baby was nowhere near the scale that I was expecting it to be. Also, I expected more about the circumstances surrounding the baby’s appearance at Griffin’s doorstep but I was a little underwhelmed when they were revealed.
My over-all take on it?
This was a really good historical romance that has amazing characters who have great chemistry both when they’re talking and when they’re not talking, if you know what I mean. It was great watching them grow closer and closer against their better judgments and as a reader, you’re there thinking, as if they would be end up anywhere else but together’. Plus, look at that gorgeous cover! That has to be one of the most beautiful covers I’ve seen in a while, for historical romances.
Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review. Yes, these are my honest and personal thoughts on this book.
About the Author:
Vanessa Kelly is an award-winning author who was named by Booklist, the review journal of the American Library Association, as one of the “New Stars of Historical Romance.” Her Regency-set historical romances have been nominated for awards in a number of contests, and her second book, Sex and The Single Earl, won the prestigious Maggie Medallion for Best Historical Romance. Her third book, My Favorite Countess, was nominated for an RT Reviewers’ Choice Award for Best Regency Historical Romance.
Vanessa spends most of the year in Ottawa, Ontario with her husband, but she’s lucky enough to spend some of the winter near lovely Amelia Island, Florida. When she’s not dreaming of plots for her next Regency novel, she’s writing USA Today Bestselling contemporary romances with her husband, under the pen name of V.K. Sykes.
Connect with Vanessa Kelly: