I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Untamed Earl (Playful Brides, #5) by Valerie Bowman
Published by St. Martin's Paperbacks on May 3rd 2016
AN INDECENT PROPOSAL
Lady Alexandra Hobbs, the daughter of the Duke of Huntley, has intended to marry Lord Owen Monroe since she first glimpsed him from the window of her bedchamber, back when she was just a girl. But the duke has already chosen Alex's infamously spoiled elder sister, Lavinia, for Owen. And now there's no turning back.
Owen has spent most of his bachelor years drinking, gambling, and skirt-chasing. He won't see another pound from his parents, however, until he's engaged to Lavinia. Desperate, he accepts an offer from her innocent and spirited--and absolutely beautiful--sister Alex: She will turn him into a perfectly tamed suitor, and show him how to woo the shrew. But when Alex's true motives come to light, will their bargain lead to recriminations--or to a romance that defies everyone's expectations?
From the opening prologue, The Untamed Earl by Valerie Bowman sets the stage for a delicious regency romance. This is actually the fifth book in the Playful Brides series but it wasn’t confusing at all to jump into. In fact, it made me want to check out the other books in the series so that I could learn more about those brides. Don’t you just love when that happens? Although I’ll have to admit that the other brides will have a hard time competing for their place in comparison to the main bride of this story, Lady Alexandra Hobbs.
Alexandra is such a fun character. I loved her spunkiness and her compassionate honesty towards others. She recently experienced her own coming out ball at the age of eighteen and although she has had some interested suitors, she can’t accept them until after her older sister Livania, who has very specific standards, is married. Of course, Alexandra has no intention on accepting another suitor as she has had her eyes on one in particular since she was fifteen years old. His name is Lord Owen Monroe, and to put it simply he is probably the most unattainable bachelor in London.
Owen doesn’t want to get married and would rather live a roguish life for the rest of his existence. This is his plan until his father pulls the rug out from under him and demands that he marries the woman of his (the father’s) choosing or else lose his allowance. Owen has always felt that he is a dishonor to his father so he decides that he will give this a shot. Who is the woman that his father has chosen for him? Alexandra’s older sister, Livania.
Alexandra is in shock at the idea of the man she has wanted to be with for so many years marrying her sister so she quickly comes up with a plan for make sure that it doesn’t happen. She offers to help Owen capture her sister’s heart, only hoping that it is his own heart she will wind up capturing. She wants tame the one known as The Untamed Earl. Once the stage is set, the events that unravel are both hysterical and heartwarming. Like I said, Alexandra is very spunky, and she isn’t afraid to show it in front of Owen. In front of others, she is much more subdued and less honest but in front of him, she lets herself be free. Owen is a bit of a cad but he’s got a good heart and recognizes the potential in Alexandra that she is hiding from other people in her life. There is a little bit of a push-pull dynamic between the two of them but to me it made the story flow and kept me wanted to almost just lock them in a room together and see what happens. Luckily for me, that is exactly what happened at one point too!
I really enjoyed watching as Alexandra fell in love with the man that Owen was instead of simply the image which she had created of him for herself. It made the story that much more believable for me (no insta-love) and help create that push-pull dynamic between the two characters that helped mold the story into what it was. All in all, The Untamed Earl by Valerie Bowman was exactly what I look for in a regency romance. It had exciting characters, fun romance, and a storyline that kept me captivated and left me smiling at the very end. Now I’m excited to read more from this author and to spend more with her Dukes, Duchesses, Lords, and Ladies of London!