Every woman wants to marry him…
But what if he’s already taken?
In these Matches made in the Scandal story Jean-Luc Bauduin, Parisian society’s most eligible bachelor, is determined only to take a wife of his choosing. And until that day comes he’ll ward off his admirers by hiring Lady Sophia Acton to wear his ring! The passion Jean-Luc shares with his convenient bride are enormously satisfying – until he discovers Sophia’s utterly scandalous past!
From Courtesan to Convenient Bride is book two in the Matches Made in Scandal series, book one; Governess to Countess was an enlightening start to what I thought then was going to be a great series, and I am so pleased that I was right in my initial assumption was right, because this one is marvellous. As ever the story opens with The Procurer – who really is one of the most intriguing character’s that I have come across – recruiting the person, her client wants for a mysterious job. Then we are whisked away to beautiful Paris, which all on its entices you and takes you on a wonderous romantic journey.
Sophia is in hiding, she is practically destitute she is constantly moving on running away, but there is no way she is going to go back to who she was again. No, she has got more pride than that. When the legendary ‘Procurer’ arrives on her doorstep with the chance for her to finally distance herself from her past life, and move on
She makes the journey over the Paris to meet a man she doesn’t know who wants her to do an unknown, mysterious job. The Procurer promised her that this secret role is nothing but an act, just Sophia taking on a character something which Sophia has made very clear will never involve any thing more than the briefest of touches. She has promised herself that she never be the plaything of a man ever again, this job for the Procurer will be the means to her happy ever after.
But, when she meets wealthy wine maker Jean-Luc and learns the exact role he is wanting from her, she is shocked. Due to circumstances out of his control and a scandal in the making Jean-Luc needs a wife – for a short period of time, until he has sorted out his life. Which is where she comes in, Jean-Luc has hired her to pose as his wife.
Sophia has been through such a lot, she has been hurt and used in ways that no women should. In a way she is damaged and Jean-Luc see’s that vulnerable side as soon as he meets her. Due to something that happened in her family she was forced to become a mistress to a horrible and manipulative man, a man who didn’t like it when at the end of their agreement she walked away. Because of this liaison she has got scandal following her where ever she goes, which is why she has had to move about a lot and now why she is so reluctant to trust and so unwilling – or maybe unable – to allow anyone to get close to her. She also has a tenacious spirit, which has got her through all the tough times and let her keep her sparkle which she hides, but jean-Luc see’s what she is trying to hide from the world. I really like it when she is being bright and lovely herself and not acting, jean-Luc always points it out to her and makes her aware of just what a wonderful woman she is. He is very supportive and encouraging, even when he finds out her darkest secret.
Jean-Luc is a seductive, charismatic and thoroughly enchanting man who oozes Gaelic confidence and charm. With just the nearest glance he can make any woman weak at the knees, but what I really like about him is that he has worked hard to get where he is, he hasn’t had life given to him on a silver platter he has had to work hard and learn, which he did. He has toiled and slogged it out to become the most respected wine merchant in the country and that is something that really makes me respect him. He is very family orientated he loves his parent’s very much, so when the reason for his sudden need to have a wife in his life appears at his front door, one of his first thoughts is, his parent’s and that is such a lovely thing. Jean-Luc has an amazingly kind and generous heart which he shows Sophia again and again and it is his gentleness with her that really make’s Sophia see what we all know him to be; A good man!
“What have I said to make you smile?” And Jean-Luc, Sophie thought, allowing her smile to broaden, was a very attractive man.
“I’m in Paris,” She said “Reunited with my dashingly handsome husband, and the sun is shining. I have every reason to smile.” He stopped abruptly and pulled her into his arms.
“Since, as you point out, we are in Paris, the sun is shining, and I have been reunited with my beautiful wife. There is only thing to be done.” Her pulse leapt, she couldn’t breathe. “What is that?” he dropped his head, blotting out the sun and in full view of all the passes by, he kissed her gently on the lips.
This is so different to ‘From Governess to Countess’ book one in this series, there are some interesting and thought-provoking elements that get’s the little grey cells turning. Both our leads have complicated histories that interweaves throughout the book, Kaye has done a superb job at creating such complex individuals who are on their own are fabulously intriguing. For me Kaye is such a skilled writer she has this rare skill at drawing you in with very few words, which gets the imagination going, and you start wondering “What is going on? What is going to come next?” and you need to keep reading to find out and I really love that. From Courtesan to Convenient Wife is incredibly romantic, exciting with a plot that see’s our couple going through so many emotions all with the most romantic city in the world as a sort of extra character.
Ms Kaye has really described and detailed Paris in such a way that it is like you are actually there with our couple, you become fully immersed in the beauty of the city. I love the fact that everything is so richly detailed, from the scenes right down to the aromas are detailed and it is this style of writing that really makes an impact on the reader.
I am really enjoying this series, I love how they are connected with the Procurer, who really is a fascinating creature. When the story open’s you get a glimpse of the Procurer, she is a mystery, an enigma I want to know her story and what drove her to be what she is. I know that Ms Kaye said that the Procurer will have her own story, and I am really looking forward to that one.
A wonderful story which I highly recommend.
From Courtesan to Convenient Wife is now available and can be purchased at Amazon.
This was a ARC copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.