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The book opens with Miss Catherine Fellingham finally having her eyes open to her family's dynamics - and it's not pretty. Turns out her father is gambling at a pace that puts the family's finances in order and her mother thinks that selling commissions (a treasonous effort) is the way to recoup their fortunes. Her younger, much more beautiful sister has been so cossetted by the family that she is a vapid and insensitive person and her younger brother, though supposedly an adult at nineteen, doesn't seem to have grown up much at all. It is up to too-tall, too-serious, wall-flower Catherine to save the family.
But when she meets a handsome stranger while visiting the Elgin marbles (against her mother's wishes) with her youngest sister (possibly the only other pragmatic family member), she doesn't realize that she may be meeting her fate. However, the next time she sees the Marquess of Deverill, it's while he's talking with Lady Arabella. I'm pretty sure we met her in The Harlow Hoyden making the books loosely related. For Catherine, this discussion is mortifying. Lady Arabella is instructing Deverill to make Cathy "popular." Telling him that he is the only one with enough consequence to do so. Something to cure his boredom. We don't see much of the Marquess' thoughts until the end of the book, which I really liked. Being with Catherine, not really knowing his motives (although, as a removed reader, we're better able to guess than our protagonist), was a nice smooth reading with only one POV. Something you don't get to see in every book.