Again, My Lord (Twist Series #2) by Katherine Ashe

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The one that got away . . .

Six years ago, Tacitus Everard, the Marquess of Dare, made the worst mistake of his life: courting vibrant, sparklingly beautiful Lady Calista Chance—until she broke his heart.

Is the only one she wants.

Six years ago, Calista Holland made the biggest misstep of her life: begging handsome, wealthy Lord Dare to help her run away from home—then marrying someone else.

Now, trapped by disaster in a country inn, Calista has one day to convince the marquess she’s worth a second chance, and Dare has one goal, to steer clear of déjà vu. But when the day takes an unimaginable twist, what will it take to end up in each other’s arms?

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Publisher and Release Date: Billet-Doux Publishing, October 2015

RHR Classifications:
Time and Setting: Regency London
Genre: Historical Romance
Heat Level: 2
Reviewer Rating: 4 stars

Review by Wendy

An original and entertaining read, Again My Lord is the second in Katharine Ashe’s, Twist series. An historical romance with a more modern feel than some readers may approve of, it’s nonetheless a breath of fresh air; after all, how many novels kick off with a line such as: “Lady Calista Chance had excellent teeth”? I was hooked straight away! The author makes no bones about the fact that she based this novel – loosely – on a popular film, which I won’t name as it will give the game away. But despite this modern take, I liked her witty, clever dialogue and was immediately caught up in Aphrodite’s humorous interference in the lives of the protagonists.

Tacitus Everard, the Marquess of Dare, has been on the lookout for a bride, his main criteria being:

a) his would-be-wife had to have perfect teeth and
b) he preferred not to become emotionally involved

He was successful with a)…but failed miserably with b)…falling hopelessly, hook line and sinker, for the beautiful, vivacious and bubbly Lady Calista Chance. He, at the time, was a rather shy, stuffy and gauche young man, decent and honourable but not good at making his intentions obvious. Lady Calista was also very attracted to Tacitus but didn’t make her feelings clear either, covering them up by teasing and unwittingly leading him to believe that she wasn’t interested in him as a suitor. Calista was desperate to leave her family home; her scapegrace, dishonourable Father was threatening to sell her off to the highest bidder, and after a month of courting, Tacitus still hadn’t come to the point, so in desperation she asked him to help her to run away. He misunderstood, believing that she wanted his help to run to another man and refused her request. Calista is forced into marriage with a hateful, abusive man after Tacitus, broken-hearted, turned tail and ran back to London.

Six years later, the star-crossed lovers are trapped by floods at a country inn, and it seems that fate has given them another chance at love. Calista has a statuette of Aphrodite in her possession (this naughty lady first made an appearance in My Lady My Lord) and strange things begin to happen. Only Calista, becomes aware of this strange phenomenon, and astutely, starts to use it to her advantage. I don’t want to give away too much, but suffice to say that Ms. Ashe has a very powerful imagination and entertains us with some very insightful, sometimes funny, sometimes poignant situations, along with a good dollop of delicious romance. After a time, Calista begins to relax and returns to the happy and playful young woman she was prior to being coerced into her abusive marriage – the young woman that Dare fell hopelessly in love with. He has lightened up too, taking himself less seriously and is also more able to take her teasing. They start to re-discover each other and the romance, as it rekindles, is tender and subtly developed.

There are a few annoying niggles which I am really surprised about, given Katharine Ashe’s background as an historian and experience as a writer of historical romance. Calista’s father is the Earl of Chance, so her last name would not have been Chance, and there are various, irritating Americanisms dotted throughout. She describes the quintessential English village the progagonists are trapped in so perfectly that she has obviously undertaken extensive and thorough research; so these slips are all the more annoying by contrast.

Those issues apart, however, I loved this charming, witty novel with its dark undertones and as a result, have already gone back to read the first in the series. I thoroughly enjoyed Aphrodite’s meddling in the lives of the Chance family, and now very much look forward to the next ‘Twist’ in the series.

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