Why all this need for hiding?
Clayton has purchased her from her father. Or, rather, her father (who is heavily in debt) has, unbeknownst to his own daughter, affianced her to Clayton. The terms: an erasure of debt in exchange for a bride.
Who is our hero?
A duke in disguise, because Whitney should fall in love with a common man. She should not be swayed by his title or be wary of his reputation with women. And she should never know the terms of their betrothal contract.
How do events complicate?
Whitney loves another. Or at least she believes she always has.
Her father has loose lips.
She does, in all actuality, love the duke in disguise.
And what of the body?
Summer’s hair shines long and black. But when she is released from Newgate it is cropped short, a series of curls against her ears. Her husband, Ruark, longs to touch her, but her skin is transparent; her bones breakable.
How, then, can he be both Gentleman and Pirate?
Unbenknownst to his wife, Ruark and Rory are not brothers. An eye patch and a bit of boot blacking applied to the hair can transform one individual into two. So, in the most basic way, Summer has never been unfaithful.
What do they want?
To master. To ravish. To seduce. To manipulate. To love. To satiate. To lie naked in a hammock.
What do his fingertips find?
The secret crevice between her thighs. This Marcus is shocking, dares to trace her spine with his tongue.
How does he come to her rescue?
Once, he saves her from a baked calf’s head; from slices of steaming tongue. Lillian thinks, later, he will kiss her.
It smacks of scandal. The Ninth Earl of Westclif and an American soap heiress. Married in haste: an anvil wedding at Gretna Green.
What is the Secret Passion of Simon Blackwell?
Parchments and vellum. Illuminated manuscripts. And one Lady Annabel McBride.
How does he fill his nights?
Whiskey. Endless journal entries. Sometimes falling asleep in chairs.
And what does she discover?
That a man can’t kiss like that and feel nothing.