The arrogant Duke of Trent intends to marry a well-bred Englishwoman. The last woman he would ever consider marrying is the adventuresome Merry Pelford— an American heiress who has infamously jilted two fiancés.
But after one provocative encounter with the captivating Merry, Trent desires her more than any woman he has ever met. He is determined to have her as his wife, no matter what it takes. And Trent is a man who always gets what he wants.
The problem is, Merry is already betrothed, and the former runaway bride has vowed to make it all the way to the altar. As honor clashes with irresistible passion, Trent realizes the stakes are higher than anyone could have imagined. In his battle to save Merry and win her heart, one thing becomes clear:
All is fair in love and war.
Let me clarify why Merry is "in love" with Cedric. Merry was "in love" with her two previous suitors as well, but after some time, changed her mind and broke off the engagements. With a pattern of infatuation that dissipated after some time, Merry was determined to see this engagement through. By doing so, Merry saw Cedric through rose-colored glasses and in some cases, excessively giving him the benefit of the doubt. Right off the bat, I thought Cedric was an ass. Everything he said was like a back-handed compliment. I was confident that Merry would eventually see Cedric for the type of person. Back to Merry and Trent, these two compliment each other, in that they don't exactly follow the molds that London society dictates. Each accepts the other as is and appreciates the other as a person. Merry and Trent started off as friends and eventually fell in love with each other. I appreciated the slow burn of a friendship turned romance. There's certainly nothing lacking in the romance department, but the wrench in their relationship is Trent's disposition that love is worthless and only wanted a friends with benefits relationship with Merry. This causes Merry much heartache because *SPOILER* [she actually, truly fell in love with him and he dismisses it for a passing fancy.] Given her previous reputation for jilting two fiances, it's logical and practical to assume that when Merry can be flighty, but things are different with Trent.
I loved all of the marriage moments between Trent and Merry and how they wade through married life together. There's definitely room for a continuation with a story for Cedric. He was a jerkface in the beginning and middle, but surprisingly redeemed himself enough to warrant his own story; probably a novella. I definitely enjoyed reading this book and will be reading Eloisa's newest books.