The Golden Season
Onyx, Feb 2010, $7.99
In 1816 Lady Lydia Eastlake learns she is broke, but wants a final Golden Season before she is forced to marry an affluent lord. She assumes finding a wealthy match will prove easy as she is beautiful and has the proper pedigree though her age at a shelf life of twenty-four and never been under the control of any male or for that matter even a female but being an orphan might go against her.
War hero Captain Ned Lockton returns to England in search of a wife with money as his family estate is teetering on bankruptcy. When Lydia and Ned meet, they are attracted to one another while also believing the other is rich. Each learns the dire straits of their beloved’s finances and sadly concludes they must pragmatically look elsewhere as love does not pay the bills.
This terrific Regency romance stars two strong lead characters (especially the pursuing female) who are both in financial trouble due to an economic recession and in her case too much spending. Ironically, his fighting against Napoleon left him and his family vulnerable to the economy’s slump. Lydia and Ned make the tale as they want one another, but look to the odious Smyth types for marriage as neither can afford to wed for love.