Noble Destiny is the second in the Noble series. It was originally published in 2003 but is being re-released along with Noble 1 and 3. Before I progress, I must say that one of my BIGGEST pet peeves is books that are over 10 years old and are re-published. They just seem so dated when you read them. However, the two books in the Noble series are the exception. They are as fresh and as full of humor as when they were first published.
The heroine is Gillian's cousin Lady Charlotte Collins. During Charlotte's third season, she elopes with an Italian count because she didn't care for that year's suitors and was bored! The marriage was a disaster - the count was unable to perform after the consummation - five years later, he dies, his family disowns her and takes every last penny she had left. She returns to England a social outcast. Her own brother won't talk to her.
The novel opens with Charlotte locking her cousin Gillian in the library so Gillian couldn't leave for a trip to the West Indies with her husband and children. Charlotte has the nerve to call Gillian selfish and forbid her from leaving.
At first, I didn't like Charlotte. After all, she locked the door to the library so Gillian couldn't leave when Gillian's three year old had to widdle. What a spoiled, self centered brat!!! As the story progresses, Charlotte's character matures. Before she leaves for the West Indies, Gillian suggests that Charlotte gets married. So, Charlotte traps Alisdair "Dare" McGregor, into marriage. Dare refuses to give Charlotte what was lacking in her first marriage, a sex life, because they don't love each other. Charlotte has to figure out how to make Dare love her and starts putting his wants and needs before hers.
Again, Katie MacAlister has thrown in some unusual servants. You won't find Carson the butler in this book!
So, what started out as a book I didn't like ended up as a book that I need to purchase for my shelf. This is a must re-read.
I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher.