- Paperback: 264 pages
- Publisher: Mills & Boon - AU (16 December 2019)
- ISBN-10: 1489295267
- ISBN-13: 978-1489295262
- Product Dimensions: 11 x 1.5 x 17.2 cm
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
Secrets of His Forbidden Cinderella Paperback – 16 Dec 2019
About the Author
Caitlin Crews discovered her first romance novel at the age of twelve and has since conducted a life-long love affair with romance novels, many of which she insists on keeping near her at all times. She currently lives in the Pacific Northwest, with her animator/comic book artist husband and their menagerie of ridiculous animals.
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Ten years earlier, Amelia's mother, Marie Force, notorious for her many marriages and divorces to wealthy men, met and married the widowed Duke of Marinceli, the 18th such Duke, lording it over his unbroken bloodlines' massive estate in the Spanish countryside, to the consternation of his only son, Teo, the one who will inherit his father's title when his father dies. He's been groomed to do so, and is proud of his lineage, making it obvious that he fiercely loathed his father's choice of bride, and his new stepsister, 16-year-old Amelia. During the few years the marriage lasted, Teo basically ignored his stepsister, and when the marriage ended in divorce, Teo, of course, blamed it on the notorious gold-digging, commoner/whore his father married. When they left the estate, he never gave them another thought, aside from blaming his father's downward spiral, subsequent ill-fated marriages, and eventual death on Marie Force.
Ten years later, Amelia is now 26, still a virgin, and still has feelings for Teo. Each fall, the Marinceli estate hosts an exclusive masked masquerade ball, and Amelia dyes her hair red, wears colored contact lenses to disguise her violet eyes, buys the most revealing gown she can find, and sneaks onto to the estate. Her plan is to exorcise Teo from her heart, attract his attention by flirting with him, and end up having two sexual encounters with Teo, losing her virginity, and then fleeing into the night. Although he used protection, when Amelia finds herself pregnant 18 weeks later, she feels obligated to let Teo know, in person, that she's carrying his child, and that she wants nothing more from him than his signature on a legal document forfeiting his parental rights to their child. What's wrong with this picture? Teo.
When Amelia arrives at the mansion to deliver her news, she nearly has to fight her way past an obnoxious butler, but eventually Teo agrees to see her. To say that his attitude toward her is frosty is putting it mildly. He's utterly cold, obnoxious, self-absorbed, and incredibly rude to Amelia, and when she tells him the purpose of her visit, he assumes she's a gold-digging commoner who wants his money, her mother's child to the core. Of course, he insists on a paternity test, and when the results are in, finally has to believe that Amelia was the mystery women he had a passionate encounter with months ago.
Now, knowing that Amelia is carrying his firstborn heir, he insists they marry, so his child can bear his name, be raised to be the 20th Duke of Marinceli, and he doesn't quite care that Amelia wants nothing more to do with him, his feelings of superiority, or his scorn and cold demeanor. Amelia wants to return to her home in San Francisco, and what does Teo do? He whisks her off to a rustic cabin on a mountaintop in the Pyrenees, where he treats her like a scullery maid and worse, planning to keep her there until she agrees to marry him, and his obnoxious, rude, entitled behavior made him quite possibly the most hateful hero I've ever encountered in a romance novel. He couldn't be less like the Prince Charming in Cinderella if he tried, and in fact, Amelia soon tells him that he's no Duke Charming. He also tells her that he will stop treating her as his servant when she agrees to marry him, at which point she can stop sleeping on the couch and share his bed. What an honor (where's my sarcasm font?) He simply cannot comprehend the fact that Amelia, despite his dim view of her and her mother, would rather act as his maid than become his wife. So, what happens to this ill-matched couple? Sorry, I don't do spoilers.
While Ms. Crews is an excellent and talented author, and her descriptions of the estate and mansion were stellar, I believe she erred in making Teo too unlikable, too stuffy, too rude, too unfeeling, too hateful, too privileged, and too full of himself for him to ever fully redeem himself to this reader. I sincerely wish that Ms. Crews had made him a little less pompous than she did. I did like the fact that she gave her heroine a backbone and some smarts, but the expected HEA ending was simply too little, too late to truly be believable. If you're a fan of fairy tale romances, I predict that you'll either react as I did, or fall in love with this well-written novel, but sadly, loving this novel while hating the hero was impossible for this reader.
As previously stated, I read an advance reader copy of this novel. The opinions expressed are my own.
I loved this book. I loved that Amelia stood on her own two feet and felt it was her duty to tell Tao he was to become a father. I absolutely loved the last part of the book where Tao’s feelings come through and he is totally opposite the way he feels and treats Amelia. His love comes through. I love how strong Amelia was how she acted his servant in the cabin until she finally gave in to her desire to be in Taos bed. I love that we see Amelia’s and Tao’s relationship grow and change it wasn’t just all of a sudden. I really enjoyed the pace and plot. I loved when Tao realized how wrong he had been about Amelia. I loved the characters and the ins and outs of this book and I highly recommend this book.
Teo dislikes Amelia's family because her mother married his father which he considers her mother a gold digger which extended to her. But their parents later divorced but Amelia always crushed on Teo. Now a few years later Amelia thinks to hide who she is to get close to Teo to work through her feelings for him but it backfires.
Enjoyed their story.