Those red drawers were going to be the death of her.
Ellie had made them for herself to go with a beautiful, if slightly scandalous, dress for a ball. Her goal had been to capture Ned’s heart. Unfortunately though, her mother made her change. It turned out that Ned and her best friend are announcing their engagement. Within the year, her best friend dies, and she of course, stands by Ned and offers her friendship. It’s said many times that he wouldn’t have made it through if it weren’t for Ellie.
4 years later, Ned’s mom, The Duchess of Love, is throwing her annual Valentine’s Ball and has brought together some men hoping not so much to turn Ellie’s eye, but maybe to give Ned the kick in the pants he needs to see that Ellie is pretty and eligible and absolutely perfect for him.
And then he sees her red drawers.
The family cat likes to pilfer things and hide them in Ned’s room. What does he leave behind, but her red undies. And sure enough, Ned walks into his bedroom to find a lovely round bottom poking up from beneath his bed, and then he realizes the cat stole her drawers. Her red drawers. His imagination goes wild. His stable, predictable friend wears red?
Ellie is mortified. She’d grabbed them by accident thinking it was her red shawl, and next thing you know her underpants become a constant thorn in her side. At one point, Ned’s former brother-in-law actually tries to blackmail Ellie and Ned using her drawers!
I liked this author’s voice. I liked Ellie a lot. At one point, Ned says to her, “What’s the matter, Ellie? You really aren’t yourself this evening.”
She bit her lip and then shook her head and looked away. “Or perhaps I finally am.”
I loved this part because she finally admits to herself that she changed her behavior to fit what she thought Ned wanted. And Ned was stunned to see her acting more carefree. It bothered him to see Ellie in a different light, but he couldn’t figure out why. I liked their romance, but it’s very slow. Like seriously slow. I loved all the characters a lot, Jack especially, and can’t wait for Surprising Lord Jack. I want to know more about Ash and why he and his wife aren’t together, and even the villain of the piece may have an interesting story for us.
I didn’t like, however, that Jack realized maybe he wasn’t as in love with his first wife as in love with the idea of her. That bugged me because I wanted to shout “It’s okay to have loved your first wife! There’s nothing wrong with that!” Other than that, I did enjoy it. The best parts were when Ned’s brothers talked some sense into him after he did something stupid. It just seemed to end very quickly after that. But it was still a fun and sweet read, and I look forward to more by Sally Mackenzie.