Kitty Talbot needs a fortune. Or rather, she needs a husband who has a fortune. This is 1818 after all, and only men have the privilege of seeking their own riches.
With only twelve weeks until the bailiffs call, launching herself into London society is the only avenue open to her, and Kitty must use every ounce of cunning and ingenuity she possesses to climb the ranks.
The only one to see through her plans is the worldly Lord Radcliffe and he is determined to thwart her at any cost, especially when it comes to his own brother falling for her charms.
Can Kitty secure a fortune and save her sisters from poverty? There is not a day to lose and no one—not even a lord—will stand in her way…
I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review & can confirm all thoughts and opinions are my own.
After being unceremoniously dumped by the man she was expecting a proposal from, Kitty Talbot is in a spot of bother. Both her parents are dead and it has been left to her to provide for her younger sisters, as well as paying off the debt her parents left her with. What she needs is a rich husband, and she knows exactly where to go to find one. Launching herself into the Ton, Kitty quickly catches the eye of a young gentleman, but there is one not so small problem, his elder brother is on to Kitty and her scheming ways. Kitty will have to use every skill she possesses if she is to make it through the social season and come away with a husband at the end.
I loved this book! It was the perfect regency style romance filled with longing glances and brief touches but, through Kitty, Irwin injects a fair amount of wit and humour that ensured I fell in love with her and the story as a whole. Kitty knows she may be coming across a little bitter and jaded, but who has the time to marry for money when in a matter of weeks your house is going to be taken from you. She is determined to at least give her sisters a chance at a good life, give them the ability to marry for love if they so wish, and if she has to sacrifice her heart in the process so be it. She is strong minded, witty, and utterly without shame and I cackled as she took on the ton who simply did now know what to do with her.
Irwin also graces us with a standout cast of side characters from Kitty’s sister Cecilia who travels to London with her, to the people of the ton, especially the Radcliffe family. My favourite without a doubt being Lord Radcliffe who takes on Kitty when he realises her reasons for wanting to marry his brother. They are more similar than they realise, both elder siblings simply doing what they must to ensure the happiness and survival of their siblings, though going about it in vastly different ways.
One of the things I loved about this book is how Irwin shows the contradictions between how women and men were treated, and still are, for the same behaviours. Kitty, for wanting to marry up & for money instead of love is described as a harpy. Her reasons for wanting to do this seemingly not enough to warrant her behaviour. Whereas a man looking to do the same thing would be celebrated for it. Through the story we see Kitty challenge the behaviour of the Ton, asking the questions no one thought or dared to ask, and bringing to light a lot of the irony in differences between how men and women were treated. She is not your stereotypical lady and I adored seeing people trying to deal with her and, mostly, failing.
The romance was *chefs kiss.* It gives off big enemies to lovers vibes, but what I loved was how similar both Kitty and Lord Radcliffe were, even if they couldn’t/didn’t want to see it themselves. She constantly challenges his views on things, and I cackled when they entered their agreement and she kept pestering him with questions on how to behave, how low to bow to certain people, how to get invites to all the exclusive balls. Their’s was a journey filled with heat, bad tempers as well as longing glances and subtle touches and I adored reading the scenes where they would interact.
The perfect regency romance! If you’re a fan of strong willed female MC’s who are ahead of their times, love interests who change themselves instead of having the MC change them & all the drama the regency ere has to offer then look no further.