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Primrose Eames is not only a widow laboring under the thumb of her brother and father-in-law; she is also a secret suffragette. James ‘Jamie’ MacKintosh is a Scottish aristocrat in search of a wife. When Primrose and Jaimie meet, they are stifled by the dictates of society until Primrose decides that Jamie should court her, much to the chagrin of her brother and father-in-law. What was meant to be a business arrangement to get Primrose away from her overbearing relatives becomes truer and truer until neither can deny the attraction they have for each other.
The author has a wonderful way with words! Primrose, or Prim, denotes one who is proper and staid when there is fire underneath the façade. Indeed, in the first part of the story, the characters are depicted as being as stiff and as unbending as floorboards where one has to follow the dictates of the Knickerbocker society. But this is necessary in order to set the stage for the change in perception and character of Prim and Jamie, as well as developing the arc of the story. The novel soon changes, develops, and blossoms just like the last part of the heroine’s name. Jamie is shown as someone interested in bringing out the fire in Prim and the author does the same in allowing the reader now to be invested in the story.
Readers of historical romances will find this a cerebral read first, an engaging one next, and will likely be interested in seeing how Ms. Fortin will write her succeeding novels.