By Georgette Heyer
Sourcebooks Casablanca, 2008. 279 pgs. Romance
Abby Wendover, at the age of "over eight and twenty" considers herself to be an old maid and her chief occupation is rearing her orphaned niece, Fanny. When Fanny, who has not yet been introduced to society, is pursued by Stacy Calverleigh, who has a reputation as being a fortune hunter, Abby wants nothing more than to protect her young ward. When she finds that Stacy's uncle Miles has also come to town, she thinks perhaps he will be her ally in keeping Fanny and Stacy apart. Miles annoys her when he refuses to help, and yet, she can't stay mad at him, as he has a habit of saying all sorts of improper but honest things that make her laugh at all the wrong moments, and soon, it may not be only Fanny who is charmed by a man of bad reputation.
This book was delightful. A clean, gentle read, the banter between Abby and Miles is amusing and this romantic un-hero will have readers rooting for him long before Abby realizes he's just what a spirited spinster needs to liven up her life.