About the Book:
Title: Earl on the Run
Author: Jane Ashford
Series: The Duke’s Estates #2
Page Length: 288
Publication Date: Feb. 22, 2022
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablance
Synopsis: Pulled from his comfortable life in Boston by agents who insist he’s the Earl of Ferrington, Jonathan Frederick Merrill―Jack to everyone else―arrives in London only to face a torrent of criticism from his great-grandmother. Angry and hurt, Jack resolves to have one look at his ancestral home, and then return to America.
Harriet Finch has been carried off to her wealthy grandfather’s country house, where she’s seething with rebellion. She spends her days pacing the grounds, fantasizing about a way to escape the life her grandfather has planned. There she meets an intriguing, handsome rogue. What better way to flout her grandfather’s rules than to flirt with a stranger he would never approve of? But when she learns Jack’s true identity, Harriet is stunned and furious at the deception! Her grandfather is delighted and insists she marry the new earl.
Can Harriet accept Jack’s promise to marry her when she wants nothing more than to be free, and is Jack willing to pay the price of nobility if it means he’ll have to stay in England?
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Earl on the Run follows Jack, Merrill, the next Earl of Ferrington, and Harriet Finch as they meet and fall for each other. Harriet, who has recently arrived at her grandfather’s country home, is constantly barraged and pressured by her grandfather to marry a man of nobility. He cares nothing for Harriet’s wishes and browbeats her and her mother until Harriet can think of nothing but rebellion. Harriet takes long walks to soothe her frustrations, and it is on one of these walks that she meets a handsome rogue with a group of Travelers.
Jack is the next Earl of Ferrington, but he does not want the role. Insulted and demeaned by his grandmother, Jack decides to return to America and leave his ancestral home. It is while with the Travelers that Jack meets Harriet, and she has no idea that he is the Earl who owns the property next to her grandfather. Harriet and Jack have an instant connection, but with secrets standing between them, can they have a future together?
When they meet each other, Harriet and Jack’s lives are irrevocably changed. They are both very unhappy with their situations in life, and they find happiness when they are together. Jack’s so different from anyone she’s ever met, and she loves his charm, wit, and zest for life. He’s like a breath of fresh air in comparison to the stuffy men she’s met before. Jack makes Harriet feel free and like the world had endless possibilities with him. Plus, time with him is an escape from the pressure and unpleasant life she’s fallen into with an overbearing and hurtful grandfather and an emotionally vulnerable mother. Harriet does the same for Jack, and he begins to feel hopeful about his future for the first time in a long time.
Though Jack and Harriet are very different, they are alike in many ways. They both have jaded feelings and a strong distaste for the social snobbery of the elite. Both also grew up with parents that were rejected by their families, and neither is comfortable with or knowledgeable about their roles in society. Neither had easy lives, and that definitely changed their feelings about and desire to be part of the upper class. This is one of the reasons I like the Duke and Duchess so much.
The Duke and Duchess are two of my favorite characters in the book! They change Jack’s views on the elite of society, as they defy all of the stereotypes. This couple doesn’t bow to the dictates Jack’s grandmother insists upon, and they show Jack that not everyone is like his stuffy and judgmental relative. They have such a wonderful, close relationship, and their chemistry is lovely. I love how they show Jack what his future could be like if he marries for love, and they help both Harriet and Jack deal with the fallout of their secrets and lies.
I enjoyed the slow-building romance between Harriet and Jack. They have great chemistry, and I enjoyed their banter. I also like Harriet’s friends and the lovely friendship that develops between Jack and Harriet’s mother. However, Harriet’s overbearing grandfather was the worst! The story also touches upon topics, including mental health, prejudice, and gender inequalities, which is also interesting.
I think readers who enjoy historical romance will enjoy this story, but keep in mind it is not a fast-paced read. This is very much a character-driven novel with a clean romance and thought-provoking themes. Thanks so much to NetGalley, Sourcebooks Casablanca, and the author for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.
- The romance.
- The Duke and Duchess.
Actions meant as kindness could turn to disaster.
Platitudes were not less annoying when they were true.
Malice is likely to reflect back on the speaker.
This story will appeal to historical romance fans.