- Title: The Importance of Being Wicked
- Author: Miranda Neville
- Genre: Regency Historical Romance
- Story Takes Place: London, England, 1800
- Published By: Avon Books, November 27, 2012
- Pages: 384
- ASIN: B007HBTBCS
About The Author: Miranda Neville had her first book published by Avon Books in 2009 called Never Resist Temptation. Her most recent book, out in September 2013 is The Ruin of a Rogue. I haven’t had the pleasure to read this, but look forward to it. The Ruin of a Rogue follows two of the characters introduced in The Importance of Being Wicked. If you haven’t read Miranda Neville, click on the link here http://mirandaneville.com/books.php to see what books she’s written. Additionally, on her biography page http://mirandaneville.com/biography.php she has three books that are free reads: A Deranged Marriage (a short Christmas novella), Three Dukes and a Baby, and A Gift For a Princess.
Miranda Neville participates with seven other authors in a blog named The Ballroom Blog. If you haven’t stopped by the blog, you really should. It was amusing. I felt I WAS in a ballroom! http://www.theballroomblog.com/ She regular participates in several more Romance Web sites.
About The Story: Caro Townsend, a fiery and vivacious seventeen year old had eloped with a young, flighty man against her family’s wishes. Not many years later, she found herself widowed shortly after a miscarriage. She had loved him, however her husband had a bad gambling addiction and lost most of their money. Now after his death the creditors were closing in demanding her to pay his gambling debts. Even though near penniless, she continued to entertain her husband’s friends as lavishly as when he had been alive.
Lady Ann, her dearly loved cousin, decided to visit Caro before her coming-out. Caro didn’t want an arranged marriage for Ann. She wanted her to marry for love. She also wanted to broaden her scope of suitors. She didn’t want a stuffy titled man for Ann. Caro decided that the artist crowd would be part of Ann’s society education, so Caro took her to gatherings that she probably shouldn’t have.
The Duke of Castleton was looking for a proper, wealthy wife. Most the Dukes of Castleton married wealthy women to increase the size of their estate and stature in their community. He needed to, especially because his father married poorly and they were short of funds. He thought that Lady Ann would be the perfect wife for him, so at an appointed time he went to introduce himself to her at Caro Townsend’s home. Anne was slightly delayed to the meeting, so Caro introduced herself as Ann’s chaperone.
Thomas Castleton was a kind, respectable man, always wanting to do the right thing, and very, very proper. He immediately disapproved of Caro. It could not be possible that she was Lady Ann’s chaperone. Yet, … he couldn’t take his eyes off her luscious red lips and her voluptuous breasts. And on top of that, there was a picture on the wall of a nude that could have been mistaken for her.
There is anguish on both Caro and Thomas’ part as they get to know each other. Thomas found himself absolutely fascinated with Caro, but knew that she couldn’t be his. He needed a proper wife, not a mistress, and a wife that added wealth to the Castletons. Caro needed to find a way out of her financial crunch and may have to marry just to pay one of her dead husbands debts. Thomas wouldn’t work for her. He was just too stuffy. She needed gaiety and laughter and he obviously didn’t have a funny bone in his body.
Review: The story was enjoyable and well written. In several scenes you just wanted to hug Thomas. For a duke, he was such a sweetheart! Ms. Neville has written several Regency Romances and I for one would enjoy reading more of her work.