Lord Somerton’s Heir


REGENCY:  “Lord Somerton’s Heir” opens in England right after the Battle of Waterloo. Isabel discovers her husband, Viscount Somerton, is dead as a result of a misjudged hedge jump when his horse comes home alone. As a childless widow, she is determined to find her late husband’s heir. That heir is a cousin named Sebastian, and she locates him in an Army hospital that is more purgatory than anything else. Isabel sweeps up the Captain determined to nurse him to health. Once Sebastian takes the title, she can pursue her dream of opening a charity school. The realization of her secret desire will help her forget about her disastrous marriage.

Sebastian had forgotten his minor ties to nobility until Isabel appears by his sickbed. He doesn’t readily accept the death of his cousin as an accident. His suspicions could be due to the brutal murder of his own wife. Not too surprisingly, Isabel and Sebastian develop a friendship as he investigates his cousin’s suspicious demise. Their friendship blossoms into romance.


“Lord Somerton’s Heir” is an old-school romance in the way horrible disasters keep befalling the already downtrodden Isabel. Still, she perseveres and works hard to do the right thing. (Perceptive readers might pick up on the anachronism of a woman of that time searching the hospitals for an heir.) Sebastian is more true to the period, but men had more options. Isabel tends to be a little flat as a character, as if the reader is viewing her through a window. The heat level is very subdued as the author allows the two to become friends before becoming lovers. Gentle regency fans will appreciate “Lord Somerton’s Heir.”


Morgan Stamm