Boundless by Lynne Connolly
Sometimes when characters have a Deep Dark Secret, the reveal is so underwhelming that I feel annoyed with them for getting so het up about something so trivial. That’s definitely not the case in Boundless; both Livia and Adrian have secrets which could destroy whole families, though Adrian’s was arguably the more shocking, he has less people who could be affected by the truth and therefore less to lose.
From the beginning of the book, we know Livia had a child when she was very you, who was taken from her. It’s obvious to the reader that she never processed this loss and is still grieving it, but it takes her twin sister to point that out and help Livia move on. (Never fear, there’s a happy ending to this part of the story as well).
Adrian, the Duke of Preston, is drawn into helping Livia when he spots her being attacked on the street in broad daylight. With his scandalous reputation, he knows he should stay far away from her, but she intrigues him and when she seeks him out a second time to ask his aid, he can’t resist accepting.
The attraction between Adrian and Livia leads them places it shouldn’t, and they get caught and pushed into a betrothal Livia in particular is very unsure about. This was where Adrian really shone; he demonstrated how much he cared about her in ways she couldn’t misinterpret, reassuring her by actions as well as words, which I really liked.
This is a great romance and the suspense subplots were based on real issues which would have dramatic consequences for the protagonists if their secrets were publicly revealed. Though it’s the third in a series, there’s no need to have read the others to thoroughly enjoy this one. Five stars.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review through NetGallley.