Rating: 4.5 Stars
Calliope Worthington is a spinster as the oldest of the Worthington girls as she's in her thirties. Gone are her dreams of being introduced into society, much less getting married as she's resigned her life to taking care of her wild and rambunctious family and younger siblings.
But then one fateful night, a storm washes away a bridge her family is traveling on and they all descend upon what looks like a deserted and decrepit manor. While everyone struggles to get their bearings and dry their clothes, Calliope goes up the manor, exploring to her heart's content.
In her soaked nightgown, she spies a chest full of jewelry and she can't resist trying on the beautiful baubles. But it turns out the mansion isn't deserted, and it's Master, Sir Lawrence "Ren" Porter doesn't take kindly to thieves.
Ren bargains with Calliope and in exchange for her doing his dark and devious biddings, he'll give her one pearl a night from the necklace she stole. Once the pearls are all given back, Calliope will be released from his hold.
But even though Ren is a disfigured beast and hides away in his estate, Calliope sees him for more than anyone has ever done before. Slowly, she unravels his past and Ren opens up and lets her slip past his guarded walls.
As time passes and Ren entreats her night after night with new and deliciously seductive experiences, will Calliope leave his side? And what of the villagers? Will they welcome her and their reclusive master or do Ren and Calliope have an even bigger fight on their hands?
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