I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.A Spring Deception by Jess Michaels
Series: Seasons #2
Published by The Passionate Pen on September 6th 2016
“He had set the wheels in motion for the next phase of his investigation. And for her heartbreak, no matter how successfully this case ended.”
FINAL DECISION: This was a book that slowly built the relationship between the hero and heroine. By the time the book ended, I adored them as a couple.
THE STORY: Celia Fitzgilbert is recovering socially from a broken engagement when she meets the reclusive Duke of Clairemont. There is something special between them from the moment they meet. Celia is thrilled that she might actually find a man she can love. But the Duke of Clairemont is actually an imposter who is masquerading as the duke to uncover a murderous traitor.
OPINION: This one quietly crept up on me as a book I really enjoyed. There was a bit of suspense in determining what happened to the real duke and also the story behind the hero. What I loved best was that while the two were falling in love under false pretenses, the truth is that both had things to hide. When the hero’s secret is revealed, Celia is shocked and upset but then realizes that there is much she can forgive. The sweetness of their story after the big reveal made me love the romance between these two. Everything seems hopeless and yet there is still a possibility for a happy ending. Best of all, there is no magic wand at the end. These two have to live with challenges because of the hero’s past but love makes all of it worthwhile.
I liked Celia as a character. She is pragmatic and willing to forgive when I expected drama when the deceit is revealed. To have the man she falls in love with go from a duke to a not-duke might be expected to make a woman despair about all she has lost. But Celia truly only loves the hero and is willing to sacrifice much to be with him.
An oh, how I loved the hero. I especially liked that he is truly a nice guy. His conscience clearly bothers him as his interacts with Celia. Accomplished and unexpected in what his story turns out to be. Michaels does a great job of having seemingly unexpected pairs work well together.
There are a lot of secrets at play in this book and I don’t want to give away anything more.
I do want to say that I liked this book even more than the first in the series. There was just an easiness with the characters and their relationship. I expected more drama and angst and while there are many secrets to be revealed, the characters themselves have a core commitment to their feelings for one another that gave me a warm feeling.
WORTH MENTIONING: Oh, I can’t wait to read what is going on with Stenfax.
CONNECTED BOOKS: A SPRING DECEPTION is the second book in the Seasons series. It can be read as standalone although there are connecting characters and an overarching story. This book gives all the information a reader needs.
STAR RATING: I give this book 4.5 stars.