Unmasked by the Marquis

Written by Cat Sebastian
Review by Ray Thompson

Alistair de Lacey, eighth Marquis of Pembroke, is a model of propriety. Why, then, does he find himself so unaccountably attracted to a charming young gentleman? This turns out to be a good news, bad news situation. The good news is that Robbie Selby is actually Charity Church, a young woman who has disguised herself to help her sister-in-law Louisa make a good marriage, and she is equally attracted to him; the bad news is that she has no interest in resuming a woman’s confining role (and clothing), even when the marquis offers marriage. Nor is that the only obstacle to a happy ending. Charity’s situation is, in fact, highly complicated (fraud, class differences, family obligations…).

Women living their lives as men are historically documented, and the author manages to create an intriguing scenario in this lively Regency romance. Charity is likeable and admirable both: forthright and independent, yet ready to sacrifice her own happiness to help others. Alistair, meanwhile, grows from a self-righteous snob to a tolerant and generous man. Both deserve the happiness they find together, even though the difficulties seem endless and the resolution rather optimistic. Recommended.