Read His at Night Online

Authors: Sherry Thomas

Tags: #Romance - Historical, #General, #Romance, #Fiction, #Fiction - Romance, #Romance: Historical, #Historical

His at Night

BOOK: His at Night
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Not Quite a Husband

“Exquisitely crafted…beguiling mix of complex characters and realistically complicated romance.”

Chicago Tribune

“Thomas, who has made a name for herself with her exquisite use of language, deftly switches between past and present in this lyrically written, emotionally captivating story graced by beautifully developed, realistically flawed characters, clear motivation, and descriptions that make late Victorian India spring to life.”

Library Journal

“Thomas has quickly become a fan favorite thanks to her wonderful storytelling and her unique ability to get into her characters’ minds and our hearts. Her prose has a musical quality that flows effortlessly and lures the reader into the beauty of her words as well as her story. Then add diverse plotlines, engaging characters, depth of emotion, and a sweeping romance—what more could you desire?”

Romantic Times

“Not Quite a Husband
has everything I want from a romance…delightful but flawed characters I love and can identify with, luscious prose, an interesting setting, and a romance that touches my heart. I can’t recommend it enough, and am looking forward very much to Sherry Thomas’s next book. Grade: A.”

—All About Romance

“Not Quite a Husband
treats the reader to the same rich and evocative prose that filled the pages of [her] previous two works. In mentioning new historical authors to be excited about, [Sherry Thomas’s] name should always be mentioned.”

—Jane Litte,

“[Sherry Thomas’s] books have vaulted to the top of my ‘most anticipated’ list…. [Her] prose and storytelling are reminiscent of Laura Kinsale (in my eyes, there is hardly a higher compliment). In
Not Quite a Husband
I found echoes of the best of Mary Balogh, as well…. I am going to give it an A; it earned that grade with the emotion it evoked from me.”


“Both of these bright and complex characters will captivate the more their layers are peeled back. The time and place of the setting is unusual, Bryony and Leo are unique, their relationship is thought-provoking, and the whole is highly original.”

—Romance Reviews Today


“This seductive, magical historical rewards readers with exquisite language, nearly erotic culinary descriptions, and a fairy-tale ending. A delectable treat.”

Library Journal
, Best Romances of 2008

“A Cinderella story with a compelling culinary twist, Thomas’s scrumptious Victorian confection proves impossible to resist.”

Publishers Weekly

“Packed with engaging characters, gripping dialogue, a devious plot, steamy sex, and smart writing. This is definitely an author on the rise. Another keeper! Get it!”

—Reader to Reader

“Delicious, delectable, and a mouthwatering blend of
Cinderella, Top Chef
Like Water for Chocolate
, not to mention
. [Sherry Thomas] dazzles with her intelligent, compelling story and memorable characters. This well-crafted romance places her among the very finest of the next generation of authors.”

Romantic Times
, Top Pick!

“Entertaining and thoroughly absorbing.”

—Romance Reviews Today

just about says it all: Sherry Thomas’s second novel is a multicourse banquet of delectable storytelling, scrumptious characters, and delightful verbal treats.”

—The Romance Reader

Private Arrangements

2008 Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award
for Best First Historical Romance
Double-nominated for the prestigious Rita Award
for Best First Book and Best Historical
Chosen as one of
Publishers Weekly
’s Best Books of
the Year

“A love story of remarkable depth…Entrancing from start to finish.”

—Mary Balogh,
New York Times
bestselling author

“Exquisite, enchanting…An extraordinary, unputdownable love story.”

—Jane Feather,
New York Times
bestselling author

“Lively banter, electric sexual tension, and an unusual premise make this stunning debut all the more refreshing. Thomas is a writer worth watching.”

Library Journal
, starred review

“Thomas makes a dazzling debut with a beautifully written, sizzling, captivating love story…. Her compelling tale of love betrayed and then reborn will make you sigh with pleasure.”

Romantic Times

“So if you’ve worried (as I have) about the future of historical romance, just remember two words: Sherry Thomas. Readers, don’t miss this one. It’s a keeper and be very thankful that historical romance has a new, shining star.”


“[A] superb debut,
Private Arrangements…
will win readers over with its elegant writing, exceptional characterization, expertly detailed late Victorian setting and exquisitely romantic love story.”

Chicago Tribune

“A deeply involving story…I loved the complicated plot and the subplot of Gigi’s mother and the Duke of Perrin. The author does a wonderful job of re-creating the late Victorian era and her characters are vividly real. This author is definitely one to look for.”

—Coffee Time Romance

Also By Sherry Thomas




To my dear friend Janine Ballard,
who is my story guide, my common sense,
and the wind beneath my wings.
May 15, 2003, has been and will always be
one of the luckiest days of my life

Other Books by this Author
Title Page
Chapter One
Chapter Two
Chapter Three
Chapter Four
Chapter Five
Chapter Six
Chapter Seven
Chapter Eight
Chapter Nine
Chapter Ten
Chapter Eleven
Chapter Twelve
Chapter Thirteen
Chapter Fourteen
Chapter Fifteen
Chapter Sixteen
Chapter Seventeen
Chapter Eighteen
Chapter Nineteen
Chapter Twenty
Chapter Twenty-One
Chapter Twenty-Two
Author’s Note
Chapter One

he Marquess of Vere was a man of few words.

This fact, however, would astonish all but a select few of his numerous friends and acquaintances. The general consensus was that Lord Vere talked. And talked. And talked. There was no subject under the sun, however remote or abstruse, upon which he did not eagerly venture an opinion or ten. Indeed, there were times when one could not stop him from pontificating on that newly discovered class of chemical substance known as the Pre-Raphaelites, or the curious culinary habits of the Pygmy tribes of central Sweden.

Lord Vere was also a man who held his secrets close.

But anyone so deluded as to voice such a pronouncement would find himself surrounded by ladies and gentlemen on the floor, screaming in laughter. For Lord Vere, according to public opinion, could not distinguish a secret from a hedgehog. Not only was he
garrulous, he volunteered the most intimate, most inappropriate personal knowledge at the drop of a hat—or even without a stitch of haberdashery anywhere in sight.

He gladly related his difficulties with the courting of young ladies: He was rejected early and rejected often, despite his stature as a peer of the realm. He gave up without hesitation the state of his finances—though it had been discovered that he was quite without a notion as to how much funds were at his disposal, current and future, thereby rendering his conjectures largely moot. He even ventured—not in mixed company, of course—to comment on the size and girth of his masculine endowment: enviable on both counts, the measurements verified by the experiences of the merry widows who looked to him for an occasional tumble in the sheets.

Lord Vere was, in other words, an idiot. Not a raving one, for his sanity was rarely questioned. And not so moronic that he could not see to his daily needs. Rather, he was an amusing idiot, as ignorant and puffed up as a pillow, silly to the extreme, but sweet, harmless, and very well liked among the Upper Ten Thousand for the diversion he provided—and for his inability to remember anything told him that did not affect his meals, his nightly beauty rest, or the pride and joy that resided in his underlinens.

He could not shoot straight; his bullets never met a grouse except by accident. He rarely failed to turn knobs and levers in the wrong direction. And as his gift for wandering into the wrong place at the wrong
time was legendary, hardly anyone batted an eyelash to learn that he was an eyewitness to a crime—without having any idea what he’d seen, most assuredly.

Such an extraordinary idiot had he been in the thirteen years since his unfortunate riding accident that no one not privy to his more clandestine activities had ever remarked on his proximity to some of the most sensational criminal cases of the upper crust, shortly before those cases were solved and the culprits brought to justice.

It was an interesting life, to say the least. Sometimes the tiny handful of other agents of the Crown who knew his true role wondered how he felt about playing the idiot for most of his waking hours. They never found out, for he was a man of few words and held his secrets close.

Of course, no secret remains a secret forever….the beginning of the end of Lord Vere’s secret came, quite literally, in an ambush by a young lady of questionable ancestry and equally questionable methods.

A young woman who, in a strange twist of fate, would soon become the Marchioness of Vere, his lady wife.

BOOK: His at Night
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