Lucas Grantham, Earl of Branton, doesn’t know what love is and doesn’t care for the term. Owing to neglectful parents, he’s spent his life caring only for himself. But when his monthly allowances run low, Lucas discovers his family’s coffers have nearly run dry from his father’s apathetic mismanagement. Lucas realizes his only options are to take over what’s left of the estate and retrench, or marry a woman with a considerable dowry.
Lady Marianne Watson’s evening at Almack’s ends with a broken heart and culminates in her abduction and a fight for her virtue and her life. When the Earl of Branton steps in and saves her from certain death, Marianne’s father believes her reputation can only be saved by a marriage of convenience.
As part of the marriage settlement, Lucas and Marianne inherit a rundown estate. But Ashford Manor must be restored before it can be called a home, and their marriage needs a sturdy foundation to create the family Marianne has always dreamed of. Marianne is willing to put in the work even if Lucas cannot overcome his aversion to love, but is she strong enough to endure a loveless marriage? Does Lucas have the wisdom to discover the meaning of love before it’s too late?