Mira, Feb 2009, $6.99
In 1846 in New Orleans, Kentuckian sword master Kerr Wallace is proud to have earned the honor of being recognized as a maitre d'armes after years of obsessive training. However, through all that hard work, he also has not lost his focus. He lives for one thing; to avenge the death of his brother killed by Pierre Rouillard who resides like a noble in Mexico.
When Pierre decides to bring his Creole fiancé Mademoiselle Sonia Bonneval to him in Vera Cruz, he hires Kerr to escort her; unaware of the man’s deep grudge against him. Sonia surprises Kerr as she refuses to marry Pierre in a marriage arranged by her family. However, though attracted to her he ignores her wishes as he has two vows to complete. First he pledged to deliver her to Pierre safe and sound; second he pledged to his late sibling he will kill Pierre. The trek is dangerous, but the biggest peril awaits the travelers in Vera Cruz.
The latest Master at Arms historical romance (see CHALLENGE TO HONOR, GUARDED HEART, and ROGUE’S SALUTE) is terrific entry in a strong mid nineteenth century saga. The story line is refreshed by partially moving out of New Orleans (especially in Mexico) and by the Kentucky hero who has become a maitre d'armes for all the wrong reasons. Fans will relish how the French Creole Mademoiselle Sonia bursts his unshakeable resolve with love as his objective turns from killing her fiancé to keeping her safe especially from her fiancé. GALLANT MATCH lives up to its title as an exciting pairing of two wonderful protagonists.