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Destiny's Surrender

by Beverly Jenkins

Series: Destiny (2)

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534365,536 (3.91)1
"The child he didn't know he had... Andrew Yates has come to a decision: it's time to stop sowing those oats and start a family. But searching for a bride isn't as simple as he'd hoped, and many of the respectable women of his acquaintance feel... lacking. Then beautiful, feisty Wilhelmina "Billie" Wells arrives at the family ranch with a toddler in her arms, claiming Drew is the father! The woman he didn't know he loved... Billie had no choice but to show up at Destiny in search of Drew. For the sake of their child, she's willing to leave him with his father so the boy can have a better life, but then, before she can blink, she's saying "I do" in front of a preacher in a marriage of convenience. All Billie and Drew have in common is the heat that brought them together, but can their sizzling passion lead to an everlasting love?"--Page 4 of cover.… (more)

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Wow. Not much to say except this and the third book in the "Destiny" historical romance series are so good. You can tell Beverly Jenkins did research in the time and place this book takes place (California in the 1800s). I thought that Jenkins did a wonderful job of not sugar coating what Billie did for a living (she's a prostitute) and the realities of her life. Billie and Drew worked for me as a romance couple and I loved that it took them some time to open up to each other. I have to say that Billie was probably one of the best romance heroines I have read in some time.

"Destiny's Surrender" follows Billie Wells and Andrew (Drew) Yates. The two have a monetary relationship when Drew is in town and he buys time with Billie. Over time the two of them have settled into a routine of sorts with Drew teaching Billie about opera and reading. Billie though she likes Drew, doesn't think of him in a romantic way since of course the two of them could never have a future together. When Billie finds out she is pregnant, she refuses to take a drink that can cause a miscarriage. Billie decides to have the child and give it up for adoption. However, as time goes on, the first birthday of her son is approaching and she knows she can't give him up. She realizes upon birth that her son Antonio is also Drew's son due to an identical birthmark. Seeking him out to deliver their son to him so she can disappear, things change when Drew's mother finds out about the boy and then Billie and Drew are thrown together in a marriage that neither one wants.

I have to say that Billie is hands down awesome. She's a prostitute and makes no excuses for it. She enjoyed sleeping with Drew, but we know she also sees other men until she gets too big to continue to provide her services to other men. Her seeking out Drew is what she has to do when she realizes the man she made the deal with is a murderer who is intent on paying Billie back for past actions.

I thought that the character of Drew was good too and of course he is left wondering if Antonio is his son due to him knowing about Billie's profession. When he is forced to marry her he is of course angry and wants nothing to do with her or their son. It was nice to see things slowly wearing down his resistance though.

I thought that Jenkins also did a nice job of including a lot of the mess that was going on in California at that time. Since Drew is of mixed race, he is being prevented from practicing law. Due to that he is left angry about the current laws of the day and how that is going to affect a lot of his clients. Billie of course knows that polite society won't admit her into their company, but I liked how she held her head up and how her in-laws would not put up with anyone saying anything against her.

The ending was really good I thought and I loved that we have a heroine that saves herself time and time again. ( )
  ObsidianBlue | Jul 1, 2020 |
Probably not a good sign that I kept forgetting what book I was reading... ( )
  being_b | Jan 8, 2020 |
Billie's orgasm tore through her like a lightning bolt. As it expanded and gathered speed, her body shook with echoing thunder and her throat opened on a hoarse cry. The man supine beneath her smiled with tender satisfaction and with his hands guiding her hips kept up his powerful strokes.

With an opening like that (to a mainstream romance, not an erotic novel), you know a book has a lot to live up to - and boy does this one do just that!

I really enjoyed this novel. It was a mixture of the gentle romance of (Destiny's Embrace) and heart-pumping action, with a real villain pulling various characters' strings. Billie is one of my very favorite heroines of all time. She's strong-willed, fiercely loyal, and has the physical (and emotional) capability to take care of herself and the ones she loves. When she discovers she's pregnant, she decides to keep the baby, no matter what the cost. She ends up being kicked out of the brothel where she made her living, and stays with an old wizened woman who tells her she's destined for much better things. When she realizes that her son is the product of her favorite client - and that the villain will stop at nothing to find her and the baby - she seeks him out, not so much for her own sake but in order to keep her son safe. She ends up staying at Destiny, and she soon ingratiates herself into the community. She is never anything less than honest about what she is - the daughter of a whore who became a whore herself - but she also manages to have a bit of pride in herself and her abilities not only in the bedroom, but in real life. She ends up teaching her fellow women on the ranch how to handle a gun, and later how to defend themselves from attack. She kills the villain with her own two hands, and watches him die without an ounce of regret. Considering all the shit he'd pulled, he deserved to go the way he did.

The hero, Drew Yates, isn't nearly as much of an alphahole as his big brother Logan (who was the hero of Destiny's Embrace). He has three dimensions to his personality, and though he loves just as fiercely as Logan, he isn't nearly as pigheaded about it. He's angry when Billie shows up on his doorstep (especially considering the fact that they're celebrating his engagement to another woman), and even angrier when his mother demands that he marry his whore, but he eventually comes around. He's always had a soft spot for his Mina, and wanted to help her when he first discovered that she'd left the brothel, only for Billie to spurn him. They still have a fiery sexual chemistry, which certainly helps, but he also sees how Billie is when she's around their son, and his mother, and the others in the community, and realizes that he loves her for reasons beyond her ability to satisfy a man. I can certainly understand why he falls for her, and her for him. They are definitely well-matched.

I adored the scenes at Destiny, and kinda wish the ugly spectre of the villain hadn't been hanging over them the entire time. When he finally makes his move, he's dispatched pretty handily, so there isn't any lingering violence or torture, but it definitely made for a few heart-pumping moments, given his depravity. I didn't have any fear for Billie while she was in his clutches, though - she'd more than shown that she could take care of herself.

It was nice to visit with the side characters again - the formidable Alanza, matriarch of the Yates family; Eli, Logan's right-hand man; Mariah, heroine of the previous novel; and other townsfolk. Just as with the first book, there wasn't a ton of plot-driven tension; when a conflict came up, it was handled without fuss or muss, which can make for flat drama but in Ms. Jenkins' hands, it somehow works. I enjoy the gentle weave of the story, like a peek into everyday life. It's nice to read something "easy" like this every now and then, just for a change.

There is also quite a bit of interesting history sprinkled throughout the story, a forte of this author and a very welcome one. Too many historicals ignore history; Ms. Jenkins definitely embraces it to the fullest extent, but it doesn't weigh down the plot.

I received the large print edition of this book from the library, and I LOVE the cover. Billie looks formidable and beautiful. It's a really nice change of pace to have a strong heroine on the cover of a romance novel. ( )
  eurohackie | Dec 28, 2019 |
The first thing to know – is when you pick up a Beverly Jenkins book, make sure your calendar is clear as you will not want to put the book down until you have read the last page. And then you have to hope you do not start to re-read the book from the beginning as master storyteller Jenkins enchants with captivating characters and fresh storylines.
Billy Wells is spirited and unapologetic about who she. Surviving on her own since a young girl, Billy has learned to survive by her wits and good advice from unlikely sources. Her one weakness is the gentlemanly handsome Andrew Yates. While Billie and Andrew share a lustful business relationship, Andrew is well aware of his social obligations and his promises to his mother means that he will have to end this relationship and marry a “proper” lady with the appropriate family pedigree. But with only one viable option left to save her life and that of her child, Andrew will have to make a decision that will change the destinies of all involved.
Known for writing powerful historical romances that touch readers’ hearts, once Ms. Jenkins has once again taken intriguing historical facts and creates a spellbinding world of fascinating characters this time set in 1880s California. Billie is an unconventional heroine, I so loved her strong, sassy, spirited, independent personality making her one of my all-time favorites. While the hero and heroine stand their own and can carry the storyline, the strong cast of secondary characters adds richness and intrigue that elevates this story beyond reader expectations.
A masterly written story about destinies, passionate love, strong family love, with a dollop of mystery and intrigue lingers long after the last page is read. ( )
  bookmuse56 | Oct 9, 2013 |
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"The child he didn't know he had... Andrew Yates has come to a decision: it's time to stop sowing those oats and start a family. But searching for a bride isn't as simple as he'd hoped, and many of the respectable women of his acquaintance feel... lacking. Then beautiful, feisty Wilhelmina "Billie" Wells arrives at the family ranch with a toddler in her arms, claiming Drew is the father! The woman he didn't know he loved... Billie had no choice but to show up at Destiny in search of Drew. For the sake of their child, she's willing to leave him with his father so the boy can have a better life, but then, before she can blink, she's saying "I do" in front of a preacher in a marriage of convenience. All Billie and Drew have in common is the heat that brought them together, but can their sizzling passion lead to an everlasting love?"--Page 4 of cover.

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