”I would die for you.”
Lady Lucy Ashton once thought herself in love, but then she was betrayed and hurt and has decided that she may never be able to have it, even though her dream is to find a man to love and have a small cottage in the country and never have to worry about society or the Ton or expectations. When her father informs her that she must marry, and she will marry the Duke of Sussex, she refuses. But her father is insistent that Adrian will be the man she will marry. Lucy thinks of Adrian as cold and unfeeling and passionless. She knows that a life with him, will be a life without love or passion or tenderness. She isn't willing to give up her dream yet. When her old lover Thomas, thought dead, is very much alive, she is desperate to find him. She has grieved for him, but there is a part of her that loves him. Sussex informs her that it is forbidden to even look for Thomas, for Adrian believes him to be a danger to her. Adrian, has always loved Lucy, and she is everything he could want for a wife. For so many years, the Dukedom has been drilled into him, he puts off the impression that he is cold and unfeeling, but he burns and aches for Lucy. As a Guardian, he has certain responsibilities, but when he sees a connection between Lucy and her ex lover, whom he believes is his enemy, he must find the truth about Lucy, and protect her at all costs. But a danger surfaces, a danger that could threaten all that he holds dear.
This is the second book that I have been able to read by this author, and I have to say that she has scored high again. I decided to try this one through Audible, so was able to listen to it. I have always loved audio books, but don't listen to them too often. So at first I was a bit nervous when I started this, since I had to get used to the accent and the voice of the narrator. However I found I quite enjoyed the accent, and the way she displayed the emotion in the story. It took me about a week to get this listened to, since I would just listen to it at bed, or on my way to work. I found many positive elements to the story and the way Charlotte Featherstone weaves a story together. I would say she is at the top of my list of favorites. I love the way she puts a story together, there is much more to it than a simple regency romance. It has a bit of a darker side to it, but not too dark, but mysterious and exciting and perfect for this time of the year. From the first book, I could hardly wait to read Adrian and Lucy's story. You see the connection they have in the beginning and frankly I was on Adrian's side the whole time!! You see both sides, but I would say I have adored Adrian for quite some time, and you see from the first chapter, how much he genuinely cares for her, and only wants her to feel as he does. I did understand Lucy's dilemma, she has been hurt in the past, and doesn't want to settle. I loved how stubborn she is, and stands up to Adrian. But I thought she was too stubborn and too pigheaded to see what was in front of her.
The plot was exciting and definitely had some shocks, and I loved seeing the suspense and mystery side to the story. It seemed to me that it had such depth and such captivating scenes that instantly draw you into the book, and you can't seem to pull yourself away. There is a certain magical quality I seem to think, to the authors writing, that keeps the reader engaged until the end, and even then keeps you thirsty for more. The danger aspect was quite thrilling, and there were times I was on tender hooks wondering what was going to happen next. Many a time, there was a moment or two that I was a bit tempted to skip ahead, but I wanted to stick with the story, no matter how tense it became. There was quite a few things I liked about the romance in the story. One is that it is more the heroine that has to learn more about love and devotion. I could help but fall in love with Adrian, sexy and handsome, tender and sweet, but beyond possessive, it will curl your toes. Lucy, even though I had a couple issues with her, I felt like there was much more to her than meets the eye. She has a will of iron, and I enjoyed seeing how she stands up to her father and to Adrian. She is willing to wait for love no matter the consequences. The relationship between Adrian and Lucy was full of tension especially in the beginning, but toward the end, there was such a beautiful complexity to it, that just made me green with envy.
Overall I felt like Pride & Passion was packed full with every positive element that makes a romance like this one intimate and heart wrenching. There was quite a certain sensual passion to the love story, and with more than enough suspense and danger to satisfy any thrill craving you may have. A tantalizing read that will satisfy your craving for a sizzling and passion filled romance.