A quiet little book written in a style full of lovely prose and imagery without being flowery.
Deborah Hale delivers the story of a pair of lovers who think they cannot and should not marry each other. She is a very wealthy widow who has never been loved just for herself and doesn't trust anyone to love her for anything but her money. He is a stoic, reliable, and righteous gentleman living in dire financial straits, who doesn't care to be the center of gossip and will always do the right thing. When she becomes pregnant, she fears another loveless marriage out of duty. He on the other hand, would never marry her because he believes her barren and could never abide the gossip that he'd married her for her fortune. They both believe she is the kind of woman one only keeps as a mistress and both secretly wish it was otherwise.
The slow unraveling of this quagmire takes place during a journey to Gretna Green, trailing a pair of young lovers who have eloped. Revelations about the characters are delivered through quiet conversation and much introspection.
As to sensuality, the story is about a couple who have obviously already had sex and there is much allusion to their healthy bedroom relations. However the sensuality in the book, while not completely absent, is best described as abridged.
Paced too slow, I can't give this book a resounding stamp of approval but it's a worthy read for its particularly loveable hero.
This story is a sequel to two short stories. The first is titled Mistress of His Heart and available only on the Harlequin website http://bit.ly/x3cYXz. The second is part of an anthology called Love Match and the story is titled Cupid Goes to Gretna Green.
GOOD STORY --- PLEASE UNDERSTAND I AM A SMOKER, NO DAMAGE TO THE BOOK.