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The Courtship Dance

The Courtship Dance, February 2009
Matchmaker #4
by Candace Camp

Featuring: Sinclair Rochford; Francesca Haughston
384 pages
ISBN: 0373773544
EAN: 9780373773541
Mass Market Paperback
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"A second chance at romance..."

Fresh Fiction Review

The Courtship Dance
Candace Camp

Reviewed by Stacey Hayman
Posted March 18, 2009

Romance Historical

Turning eighteen, coming out into Society, and a secret engagement to her childhood friend, Sinclair or The Duke of Rochford, made a busy, but happy, time for Francesca. Then it all came apart after she walked into a situation that made her intended look guilty of cheating. Francesca's heart was broken and she called off the engagement. Hoping to forget her sadness, she decided she was in love with Lord Haughston and they married in a rush. Unfortunately, it was a decision made in haste and caused Francesca even greater heartache. After ten years of marriage Andrew's death was more of a relief than loss to Francesca, even with the added burden of large debts and little income. To alleviate some of the financial pressure, Francesca has pawned items of value, economized expenses as much as possible, and has taken to matchmaking members of the ton.

Her most recent success was The Duke's younger sister, Callie. Now without the buffer of his sister and having just learned that Sinclair wasn't guilty of being unfaithful, Francesca is feeling increasingly nervous about her current relationship with The Duke. She's determined to apologize and to make things right in her mind, she's going to find The Duke a wife. Except The Duke doesn't want her to find him a wife, he wants "her" to be his wife. Although Francesca still feels a strong connection to Sinclair, she's concerned her age is too advanced to provide him with an heir. Will their hearts win over her mind? Will an old wrong finally be made right?

This is the fourth book in the Matchmaker Series and there are character cross-overs from previous books, but it can be read on its own without losing anything. It's a little sad that this pair spent so long apart when they seem to be such a good match, but that's the plot-line so what can you do? The characters are very likable and their relationships seem just right. A fun, satisfying book for regency romance fans.

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Lady Francesca Haughston had given up on romance for herself, finding passion instead in making desirable matches for others. So it seemed only fair, when she learned she had been deceived into breaking her own long-ago engagement to Sinclair, Duke of Rochford, that she now help him find the perfect wife.

Of course, Francesca was certain any spark of passion between them had long since died—her own treatment of him had seen to that. The way Sinclair gazed at her or swept her suddenly into his arms…well, that was merely practice for when a younger, more suitable woman caught his eye. But soon Francesca found his lessons in love scandalously irresistible—and a temptation that could endanger them both.

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