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In for a Penny by Rose Lerner

In for a Penny

by Rose Lerner

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Described as "A Duke (I think? could just be a common or garden-variety lord) marries a businessman's daughter because he needs her money to pay off his debts. They agree beforehand to treat the marriage as a mutually beneficial arrangement, and then, as they get to know each other, start developing ~feelings~~~ Rose Lerner is very good at creating likable but believably flawed characters, and at integrating serious issues into her stories in an organic way -- in this book, estate management, a landlord's duty of care towards his tenants, the class divide between Penny and Nevinstoke -- without it feeling like she's getting up on a soapbox and lecturing you. Like Courtney Milan, but... better."
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
The young Lord Nevinstoke, known to his friends as Nev, loves nothing more than a good time, whether it's drinking with his friends or dallying with his mistress. But when his father dies unexpectedly, Nev suddenly inherits the responsibility of being head of the family, as well as a mountain of crushing debt. With a large estate to repair and no money for the task, his only choice is to marry a rich woman, and heiress Penelope Brown fits the bill nicely. Since Penelope's father is a tradesman, she is not of Nev's class, but her money seems a fair trade for his title. Nev and Penelope marry quickly, but despite their growing attraction to each other, they encounter many obstacles. Nev's estate is in even worse shape than he thought, and he has no knowledge of business matters. His tenants have grown increasingly discontented as the estate has become less prosperous. And meanwhile, Penelope feels uprooted from everything familiar and thrust into a place where she doesn't belong. Will Nev and Penelope be able to solve these problems and finally find happiness together?

I enjoy a good Regency romance every once in a while, and I'd read that this one is the next best thing to Georgette Heyer. I don't know if I'd go that far, but I do think the book is very well written and often entertaining. I enjoy the "marriage of convenience turns into something more" trope, so I was predisposed to like the plot, and I also liked both Nev and Penelope as characters. Specifically, I was a big fan of how Nev grows and changes throughout the book. He starts out as a careless young man -- albeit a likable one -- who lives entirely for pleasure. But when he is confronted with his responsibilities for the first time, he takes them seriously and tries to learn all he can. I also sympathized with Penelope quite a bit, as she experiences a lot of insecurity when she marries "above" herself. I did get annoyed at all the misunderstandings between her and Nev, though; every time it seemed like they were finally on the same page, one of them would second-guess the relationship for no good reason. There was also a lot more, ahem, "romance" than I was expecting. But overall, as Regency romances go, this is a fairly enjoyable one.
  christina_reads | Dec 11, 2014 |
The first-time-author slightly hectic plotting is more than made up for by genuine characters and outstanding dialog and detail...stayed up way too late reading my library copy, and just bought it and her next one online! ( )
  MelissaZD | Jan 1, 2014 |
review to come ( )
  emmytuck | Sep 27, 2013 |
Oh, goodness. Really enjoyed this one, and would probably never have found it but for the Internet. Found a review by accident, checked my library, and bumped it up to the top of my "to read" list. It definitely had that Heyer feel to it, which was really nice--so many historicals today just don't have that authentic period "feel" to them that hers do, but this one did. As other reviewers have said, it's like Heyer with...ahem...other stuff added. Tastefully. A very nice addition. I was really drawn into the world of Nev and Penny, and would have slowed down to make it last longer if the characters hadn't been in such intense peril near the end (I just couldn't put it down; they had to be rescued!). I hope to get my hands on Lerner's second book soon, and really hope she keeps writing more! ( )
  beckymmoe | Apr 3, 2013 |
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To my mother. I wrote this book for you. I wish you could have read it.
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June 1819

"Thirkell, you know what happened the last time we went to one of the Ambersleighs' do's"
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No that he's inherited a debts and responsibility, Lord Nevinstoke has no choice but to start acting respectable--especially if he wants to find a rich wife. Heiress Penelope Brown seems the perfect choice. But when they get to Nev's family estate, all the respectability and reason in the world won't be enough to deal with tenants on the edge of revolt, a menacing neighbor, and Nev's family's propensity for scandal. Determined to set things right, Nev and Penelope have no one to turn to but each other.… (more)

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