The Scoundrel and the Debutante (The Cabot Sisters) by Julia London
Overview by Amazon:
The dust of the Cabot sisters’ shocking plans to rescue their family from certain ruin may have settled, but Prudence Cabot is left standing in the rubble of scandal. Now regarded as an unsuitable bride, she’s tainted among the ton. Yet this unwilling wallflower is ripe for her own adventure. And when an irresistibly sexy American stranger on a desperate mission enlists her help, she simply can’t deny the temptation.
The fate of Roan Matheson’s family depends on how quickly he can find his runaway sister and persuade her to return to her betrothed. Scouring the rustic English countryside with the sensually wicked Prudence at his side—and in his bed—he’s out of his element. But once Roan has a taste of the sizzling passion that can lead to forever, he must choose between his heart’s obligations and its forbidden desires.
This was such a great book! Julia London has struck gold again! While I haven’t read the other books in this series, I was totally captivated by the wonderful love and adventure that features Prudence and Roan. It was fun, on-the-road story that is fast paced and filled with witty dialogue and passionate embraces.
Roan is American. I adored that he was a Yankee and his accent was a problem. He ends up in the wrong part of England because he gets ‘West Lee’, ‘Westleigh’ and ‘Weslay’ mixed up with the English accent. Although he is at a disadvantage at the start of this story, his strength and intelligence surfaces very quickly. He is from New York, so like his brethren, maybe nothing holds him down.
Prudence is becoming depressed with her spinster life. Wallowing in the country and hoping that she will magically garner an offer of marriage. When she goes to visit her friend, she makes an impetus and reckless decision. She gets onboard the stage coach to follow the handsome Yankee who has captured her attention. Her impulsive behaviour is so out of character for a debutante that it doesn’t take very long for the rash actions to catch up with her.
Crisscrossing the English countryside allows two people to get to know one another. While Roan finds Prudence impulsive, like his sister he is searching for, he also finds her beautiful and attractive. Dangerous run ins with bandits and an unhappy horse provide some tense and humorous moments. The whole time I was reading the book, I was so wrapped up in the story and was tense about the implications for both Prudence and Roan. Prudence is a member of the ton and a notorious family. She certainly should not be traipsing all over England with a man. Roan needed to find his sister and bring her home to her intended marriage.
The author weaves her story so well that you root for the distractions to disappear so Prudence and Roan can explore this blooming relationship. I didn’t want to think about his almost arranged marriage in New York. I didn’t care about her scandalous sisters and that she would be ruined. I wanted them to remain at the idyllic lake where they consummate their passion for each other. It was a beautiful and very descriptive scene, but I am not even sure that sex in the water is possible – especially the first time! Regardless it was a great scene and the scenery is described in such lush terms, it sounded like a paradise. Roan and Prudence have a strong passion for each other that makes their coming decisions that much harder.
In stories where the characters travel all over, there is always a reckoning. Julia London writes an ending that really had me guessing until the end. I don’t think I have been this tense about a story for a long time! That is how I know it’s a great story – it keeps me guessing and hoping until the very end! A great story with well developed, interesting characters. I really hope the youngest Cabot sister, Mercy gets a story of her travels to the continent. I can’t even imagine what mischief she will get into!