Series: Keeping Up with the Cavendishes #3
Source: ARC, Edelweiss
Also in this series: It's Hard Out Here for a Duke
Also by this author: It's Hard Out Here for a Duke
Her BrainsClaire Cavendish is in search of a duke, but not for the usual reasons. The man she seeks is a mathematician; the man she unwittingly finds is Lord Fox: dynamic, athletic, and as bored by the equations Claire adores as she is by the social whirl upon which he thrives. As attractive as Fox is, he’s of no use to Claire . . . or is he?
Plus His BrawnFox’s male pride has been bruised ever since his fiancée jilted him. One way to recover: win a bet that he can transform Lady Claire, Society’s roughest diamond, into its most prized jewel. But Claire has other ideas—shockingly steamy ones. . .
Equals A Study In SeductionBy Claire’s calculations, Fox is the perfect man to satisfy her sensual curiosity. In Fox’s estimation, Claire is the perfect woman to prove his mastery of the ton. But the one thing neither of them counted on is love . . .
Lady Claire is a spin on Pygmalion, or as most 90’s kids like me know, She’s All That. You have the dashing and popular boys making a bet on the backward, geeky girl. In this case, Lord Fox takes a bet from his best friend, Mowbray, that he can woo Lady Claire. If he wins, he gets Mowbray’s prized horse. If he is unsuccessful, Mowbray gets Fox’s prized hunting dog. Lady Claire has recently arrived in London from her life on a horse farm in Maryland and she couldn’t stand out more if she tried. She loves math, doesn’t plan on meeting a man and getting married, and is unconcerned with the ton’s opinion on her. She cares deeply about her family and hopes to see her sisters and brother happy and settled though. Her aunt is pushing all 3 sisters to find a husband, hoping that having the girls married in London will keep the brother in London and he will hold on to his dukedom (which he really doesn’t want!)
So, like Pygmalion/She’s all That, you have the bet. Fox is arrogant and pompous and is pretty much doing all he can to soothe his wounded pride. Mowbray is kind of a douche. He is simply tired of coming in second to his friend. He becomes the ‘bad guy’ of the story, even though Fox’s actions are initially just as reprehensible. Claire is much like Eliza/Laney in that she is different from the popular crowd. In this case, she is an American (the horror!!!) and she is very smart (again, the horror!). I adored Claire. She only cares what others think of her in so much as it would affect her siblings. She doesn’t desire to make others happy by being something she isn’t. She doesn’t hide her adoration of math and her desire to spend her life doing math, talking about math, and meeting others who love math. You have to admire that type of determination, especially when it makes you a social pariah!
Like Henry/Zack, Lord Fox is annoyingly arrogant. He is adored by everyone, but has suffered a recent jilting from a woman. He thinks nothing of betting on a human. She isn’t a person to him, but just a means to soothe his pride. However, as the story progresses and he gets to know Claire, genuine feelings develop and it becomes more than a bet to him. You can already see how this will end badly.
Because its a bit of a retelling, you know what the major plot points will be, yet that didn’t detract from the story for me at all. I loved the way the author told the story in 3rd person, but with alternating focus between characters. Overall, this was a fully enjoyable read that makes me want to grab the rest of the series ASAP! I loved the author’s note at the end about which real life female mathematician she fashioned Claire after.
Oh!! There is a Mean Girls allusion in the story as well. AWESOME!
- POV: 3rd
- Tears: no
- Trope: bet, opposites attract
- Triggers: none
- Series/Standalone: stand alone within an interconnected series (I haven’t read the previous books but that didn’t hinder my enjoyment at all)
- Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »No « Hide Spoiler
- HEA: View Spoiler »yes « Hide Spoiler