American heiress to a shipping company, Emma Dunston stays with her London relatives and plans to have a fun season before returning home to convince her father that she really can look after the business. However, when she meets the Duke of Ashbourne under bizarre circumstances which leads him to believe she's a kitchen maid, his interest is provoked, can the notorious rake be considering marriage?
This was Julia Quinn's debut book and it's taken me a while to get around to it. In an author's note she says that although it maybe isn't as polished as her later books it does have and exuberance about it, and I think that's true. Yes, the story is fairly insubstantial and there’s all the usual complications created by long standing prejudices and misunderstandings, but the characters (especially the more minor ones) are engaging and it doesn't take itself too seriously.
It's no secret that I rely on Julia Quinn as my "comfort reads" - when the world seems a nasty and demanding place, I find fluff and humour in her regency romances...no, they're not thought-provoking or improving, but provide warmth and an easy pleasant read with a happy ending!