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Though resolute and driven by nature, dedicated spymaster Langdon Bourne has lost his way. Even his passion for his secret organization, the Young Corinthians, has waned—until he is assigned a mission with the potential to finally bring about the peace that has eluded him for nearly two decades. But to eliminate a brilliant, dangerous nemesis, Langdon needs the help of a woman whose loyalties are most uncertain.
Grace Crowther ignores the rumors that persist after the death of her husband, a merciless doctor who won her in a card game. Is she truly the black widow that many believe? One look at her angelic face and one glimpse into her heavy heart tells Langdon all he needs to know about Grace—and his own deepest desires. He needs Grace, if he’s to have any chance of tracking down the leader of the nefarious gang known as the Kingsmen. And he wants her desperately, enough to forget the rules of a good spy and take risks no ordinary man would dare. For Grace has no reason to trust Langdon, or to help him. But somewhere deep inside she knows that he is the answer to her prayers.
*I received a free ARC of The Wicked Widow Meets her Match from Ballantine Books via Edelweiss in exchange of an honest review*
The Wicked Widow Meets her Match is a delightful historical romance that dares to bend the gender roles, where true love is hard to believe, and a horrible band of criminals has to be fought and dismantled! Grace is a close to perfect historical romance heroine, because she is strong, resilient and intelligent. And while her life has been very hard, she has not hardened her heart in protection. Being married off to a horrible man to whom her father lost her in a card game, Grace had all possible reasons to be hard, so seeing a woman who has a lot of fight in her was awesome. Langdon is a great character as well, and the protective way he feels about Grace from their first meeting got to me.
Using Grace to finally capture the king of the infamous Kingsmen and bring peace to his family, Langdon is not happy about having to put her in danger, but he needs to lead this case to the end. The Kingsmen are after Grace for reasons unknown, and killed her husband to get to her. The Wicked Widow Meets her Match is filled with suspense, romance, strong characters and a secondary cast of characters that are also fun to get to know. There is both humor and hotness, excitement and quiet moments.
I think the fact that there is a mystery is one of the reasons I loved The Wicked Widow Meets her Match so much, and Grace plays a big part in taking the Kingsmen down. When the gender roles are slightly bent in historical romances, it makes me happy, even if it is completely anachronistic. Grace is independent in most ways, and is lucky enough to be able to count on Mr. and Mrs. Tremelton who have been working for her during the last years. And when Langdon shows up with a possible way to save her, she is very dubious at first, then grabs on to the possibility of a future with both hands.
As the story moves on, it becomes clear that the head of the Kingsmen believes Grace to be able to make a positive identification, which is why they are after her. Langdon and his Young Corinthians are very good at their jobs, though, and manage to stay on top of every plot thrown their way – until the ultimate showdown which was very exciting. If you are looking for a historical with a feisty heroine, you should pick up The Wicked Widow Meets her Match at your earliest convenience. I’m kind of sorry I waited so long before delving into it.
Even without reading the prior books in the Regency Rogues series, I never felt lost while reading The Wicked Widow Meets her Match, but I will definitely pick those stories up as well, hopefully, they will be just as full of action, romance and excitement as this one.
Ten years had passed. Grace no longer actively hated her father for what he’d done. Such an intense emotion required too much of her. And ever worse, contemplation insisted that she accept her plight as something never-ending. Unchangeable. Doomed.
He’d never reacted to a woman with such gut-deep possessiveness before. He’d lusted after women, of course – with varying degrees of intensity. But this, Good God, this was not just lust. He’d actually heard the word “mine” roaring inside his head.
The dear woman patted Grace’s hand again. “I can’t answer that question, my lady. You’ve boiled it down until there’s meet and there’s bones. But that’s not life. Right or wrong is not a simple thing.”
Grace looked at Mrs. Templeton pointedly. “Did you have to embarrass the man?” “It worked,” Mrs. Templeton countered proudly. “And besides, we women have very little in the way of weapons. Might as well use what is at our disposal.”