25 year old, half-American Gillian Leigh is in London to attend her cousin's coming out season in the ton. She is quite delighted to be a wallflower - provided she could stop doing clutzy things like setting the Duchess' favourite gold curtains on fire!! She does not waltz - she murders toes!!! She is outspoken, has dogs with a 'problem' that has everyone fanning the air!! She is a quick judge of character and is not afraid to blister her aunt for going along with the ton in giving the cut direct to the Earl of Wessex.
The Earl is in town for the first time in 5 years, following the death/murder of his beautiful wife, supposedly at his hands when he found her in the arms of her lover. He wants a wife to produce an heir, a mother for his illegitimate son, but most of all he wants a wife that will cause no problems, no gossip.
Gillian's cousin quickly sets sights on the earl knowing reformed rakes make the best husbands, but she sees the earl has eyes for her tall, amazon, redheaded cousin. He is drawn by her open honesty, and despite the smashed toes, black eye, bashed head and broken nose, he thinks Gillian is just what he needs. He will make her a countess, giving her everything - but his heart. However, Gillian is not about to settle for anything less and will wage a war of attrition to get it!!!!
This report prepared by DeborahAnne MacGillivray
Leisure, Feb 2002, 5.99, 329 pp.
Five years ago Noble Britton's wife mysteriously died. Unable to resist putting a scandalous label to events without supporting facts, the Ton “logically” concludes that Noble was involved in the death. Dubbed the “Black Earl” by his peers, Noble rusticated for the last few years, but now seeks a new wife, one who is mousy and behaves with proper decorum.
Gillian Leigh does not want a coming out, but though too old at twenty-five, too American by a half, too tall by a head or more, and too accident prone she has no choice. So why does Noble want to meet and marry this amazon paragon who literally sets the Ton on fire if he seeks an unobtrusive spouse? Love works in mysterious ways.
NOBLE INTENTIONS is a very amusing Regency romance that will delight sub-genre fans especially since Noble lives up to his name as he is the victim of Gillian's pratfalls. The lead couple is a delightful pairing whose story line remains true to its basic slapstick like theme. Fans who enjoy a jocular look at the foibles of the Ton will want to read Katie MacAlister's humorous tale – just keep ice packs and bandages handy in case one falls while laughing.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner