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Synopsis

“Forgive me, Grandmama, but I have never seen you dodder.”

Despite his aging grandmother’s wishes that he marry and sire another heir for Pennyworth’s earldom, Clarance “Rance” Burgoyne leads the footloose life of a well-heeled bachelor, associating with five other Regency bucks. They call themselves the Lunar Society--a notorious group of young men with secret connections to England’s Home Office and the Crown--but they are known more notably by their devilish and amorous escapades. Although his grandmother’s apparent frail health bothers him, Rance is not about to live his life by her dictate--especially when there is so much that he has yet to experience.

Recently widowed Patience Hartford has returned to England and family, having endured five years lacking in sexual concourse within a marriage of convenience to a much older man. Newly independent, she purchases a permanent residence in London with the proceeds of her husband’s will and decides to acquire a virile lover who will satisfy her suddenly awakened needs. But the arrangement has to be on Patience’s terms, terms that don’t allow for love or commitment.

Rance is at first attracted to Patience’s beauteous younger sister until he meets Patience and learns that she is an experienced widow. He is ready for a short-lived fling, and it turns out, so is Patience.

When Patience and Rance come to an arrangement and consummate their affair, both realize that their carefully planned agendas will never survive against the fiery carnality that consumes them when in each other’s arms. It seems Fate turns the tables on unsuspecting lovers who begin a reckless affair.

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