Beguiling the Earl is Book 2 in the Landing The Lord Regency Romance series by Susanna Medeiros. Catherine Evans, younger sister to Louisa who is married to The Marquis of Overlea (her story can be found in Book 1 – Loving the Marquess), is one month into her first season on the marriage mart. She finds it dull since she is secretly in love with her brother-in-law Nicholas’ best friend, the Earl of Kerrick. When her crush finally arrives in London, Lady Catherine sets out to seduce Kerrick who secretly returns her affection. Despite various obstacles, including the disapproving Nicholas, Catherine and Kerrick are drawn together romantically and secretly consummate their relationship. Unfortunately, Kerrick finds himself indebted to the Duke of Clarington (a plot line from Book 1) and agrees to spy on the treasonous Lord Worthington by courting his daughter Rose. Kerrick reveals all to Catherine and pledges to marry her once his task is completed. Catherine decides to befriend Rose and they quickly become close friends. Complications ensue but love prevails. Although Worthington is arrested, there is some doubt as to his guilt and there is still an unrequited love to explore leading to the plot of the next novel in the series.
I give this book three and a half stars. The storyline was readable, the romance was delightful, but the entire book lacked substance. The plot seemed to serve as a lead in for the next book in the series. Although Kerrick and Catherine were well drawn, the other characters lacked substance and even motivation. Why did Nicholas disapprove of Kerrick? What was behind Charlotte’s actions? Who was the Duke of Carington? There was too much repetition of the main characters’ thoughts and feelings and not enough development and action in the story. It was like reading two thirds of a book which abruptly ended without a successful wrap up.
However, in spite of these shortcomings, I did enjoy the book and want to thank CrushStar Multimedia LLC from NetGalley for letting me download this novel for free in exchange for a honest review.