Rated 4 out of 5 White Roses.
Content rated with the Pale Pink Rose.
Hugh Theodore Dune, the Earl of Briarly knows that training horses isn’t just a hobby but it’s his life. But after a recent accident that put him in a coma for a few days, Hugh has come to realize that he might just need an heir. But to get that heir and even that spare, he’d first need a wife.
So with his sister Carolyn’s help, he is given a list of possible candidates for the position of his wife and two weeks at a house party to figure out which one suits him best.
But of course, his sister cannot just throw a party where the attendance is one sided and all of them unattached women. Carolyn figures she must invite some available and single men of good breeding to even out the party. The men who join in the festivities might even help her young and widowed good friend, Georgina (who has sworn off getting married again), have a change of heart.
So, among the guests that Carolyn invites one happens to be the current diamond of the season Miss Gwendolyn Passmore, Alec, the Earl of Charters and his sister Olivia, Miss Katherine Peyton who was left behind at the party by her brother Tom and into the hands of Captain Neill Oakes.
Surely among these lovely ladies, her brother would have his choice. Right? But while Hugh sets out to try and court the women his sister has especially approved of, the men that Carolyn had intended for Georgina seem to sweep those women off their feet before he even has a chance to say, “Hello”. This situation leaves him looking at the one woman in the party who unfortunately doesn’t want to get married.
Or does she?
Now while I do tend to like anthologies, which as a reader one hopes gives more stories that are equally sastisfying in one volume as a regular book, this novel on the other hand is rather unique. As it says on the cover, this book isn’t so much an anthology as it is a novel in three parts. So truth be told, for having three authors, I find that The Lady Most Likely actually flows really well.
The house party provides a good path for the novel to take place. As there is Hugh, who is trying to find a wife, barely gets a word in edgewise before the lady in question meets another man and gets engaged. While it is predictable in that regard, its execution is actually what kept me reading. There are parts dedicated to the love stories of the invited guests of the house party, yet the stories as a whole also work in a way to introduce the love story of Hugh and Georgina. To put it simply, it’s like reading 3 stories that are all interlinked in one big story and as you read the shorter stories, it all helps to paint the bigger picture.
The Lady Most Likely is definitely a page turner. I found I actually enjoyed reading about the love between Gwendolyn and Alec more than I did about Neill and Kate or Hugh and Georgie. But one story without the other two would simply be incomplete. I know I mentioned it once, but it is worth repeating -the stories in this book flow so well that The Lady Most Likely definitely should be recognized as a title worth reading.
Hugs & Kisses,
The Lustrous Courtesan