About the Book:
Title: An Unexpected Earl
Author: Anna Harrington
Series: Lords of the Armory – Book 2
Page Length: 384
Publication Date: Feb. 23, 2021
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Synopsis: Twelve years ago, Brandon Pearce, former brigadier and now Earl West, had to give up the girl he loved, Amelia Howard. Now Teddy is a grown woman with a past she desperately needs to keep hidden in order to save her brother Frederick’s reputation. In an effort to avoid blackmail, Frederick needs to place a list of gentlemen into government positions, and for that, he’ll need an ally in Parliament―Pearce.
Pearce has been investigating a criminal group he believes is behind the government appointments. Pearce must pretend that he sides with the blackmailer, even though it means breaking Teddy’s heart. But Pearce is willing to do anything he can for a second chance with her, even when he discovers she’s been keeping secrets of her own.
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A wonderful second-chance historical romance, the story focuses on Pearce and Amelia, childhood sweethearts who are brought together under dubious circumstances. Pearce, a newly appointed Earl who worked for the crown, is working to uncover corruption, and Amelia’s brother is a suspect. Amelia knows her brother is being blackmailed and will do whatever she can to protect him. However, the more Amelia learns about her brother and Pearce, the more conflicted she becomes.
Amelia’s entire life has very much been dictated by men, and, betrayed by several men in her life, she hesitates to trust. Even though she’s been through tremendous heart-break, she has a fierce dedication to helping others, and I like how selfless she is. She’s determined to help other women gain independence, which is propelled by her inability to break free from the patriarchy. There are some great messages here about a woman’s worth, sense of free will, and gender inequities. Other messages about the confining dictates of society, as well as societal inequities, are also prevalent.
Pearce is a great character as well. Sent away after a scandalous tryst with Amelia, Pearce works his way up in the military before becoming an Earl. He is an honorable man with a tremendous amount of patience, and his feelings for Amelia are clear. I love how he fights for her and accepts her no matter the consequences. Like Amelia, Pearce is selfless, and his quest for truth and justice is admirable. Plus, he is incredibly smitten with Amelia, which I loved!
Pearce and Amelia have amazing chemistry, and I really enjoyed their second-chance romance! The couple has a long and complex history, and there are a lot of buried feelings between them. Neither forgot or moved on from their first love, and seeing them reconnect and face their past while still dealing with their present was fantastic. I love Pearce and Amelia’s easy way with each other, and the dialogue between the pair is fantastic. They have a deep and profound love that time and distance didn’t erase, and I wholly rooted for their happy ending.
When fate brings us love, we have to hold on tight with both hands and never let go.
The mystery surrounding Sceptre is also really intriguing. Pearce and the other members of The Armory are trying to solve a case that involves members of Parliament. Sceptre is a nefarious and mysterious group, and I enjoyed how this aspect of the story played out.
I really enjoyed this interesting and swoon-worthy historical romance can’t wait to read more by Anna Harrington. Though it is the second book in the Lords of the Armory series, An Unexpected Earl can totally be read as a standalone. Thanks so much to NetGalley, Anna Harrington, and Sourcebooks Casablanca for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.
- The romance! I love the second-chance romance trope, and Amelia and Pearce have amazing chemistry.
- The mystery surrounding Sceptre.
- The men of the armory.
Kissing her felt like coming home.
“If you race the Devil for your soul,” he murmured, “you’d damn well better win.”
This is a great story if you like second-chance historical romance!