Finished March 30
A Bride for the Season by Jennifer Delamere
This romance novel is set in the 1850s in London. The story follows two characters. Lucinda Cardington is 25 and has given up the idea of a husband. She plans to use the inheritance she comes into the following year to set up her own home so she is freer to do what she wishes. She already spends one day a week at a shelter for women. There she helps to educate former prostitutes so they can find legitimate word and have a better life. But her parents still force her to attend social events that she has no interest in and her younger sister Emily is too much the flirt. Lucinda worries about Emily, and so one night when she sees Emily sneaking out of the house, she takes her maid and goes after her.
James Simpson has been playing the field for a few years, flirting with the young women, but never going further than that. He takes his pleasures elsewhere. However one night, after a ball, he takes himself to his usual haunts and finds himself accosted by none other than an upper class young lady. It looks like his two world have finally come together and he will be forced to marry the young lady, Emily, in order to save her reputation.
He finds that her father's terms are more complex than that though. Emily's dowry is dependent on James also finding a husband for Lucinda. As James takes the time to get to know Lucinda better, in order to find a good match for her, he finds himself more and more drawn to the elder sister, but how to manage things then is the difficult part.
An interesting romance that shows the reality of life during this period as well as giving a nice love story. Lucinda has many interests, and James is a man who actually cares about women and looks at them as having something to contribute.