When I first open a Beverly Jenkins novel, I’m giddy with anticipation. Because I know the woman is a queen among queens with historical romance. And when I finish, I’m two-thirds satiated and one-third frustrated…because she leaves the reader hanging. Yes, Ms. Jenkins…teasing us about the next book in the series is cruel and delicious all at the same time. And as readers of my reviews know, I’m not always the most patient when it comes to waiting for my favorite authors to release their next gem of a novel.
So...Breathless. This book has everything. A yummy hero who has overcome some flaws of his past? Check. A gorgeous woman who gets more revved up looking at numbers and balancing budgets than with the idea of marrying? Check. A believable courtship that leaves the reader flying through the pages? Check. Drama causing our leads to persevere rather than fold? Check.
It’s been years since Portia Carmichael has seen Kent Randolph. The former bartender for her Uncle Rhine, Kent eventually arrives looking for work at the location of Rhine Fontaine’s new ranch. Fifteen years have passed since Kent worked for Rhine. And for a shy twelve year-old girl, eighteen year-old Kent was larger than life. Back then, six years was a big age-spread. Now? Six years is hardly worth mentioning. Moverover, Portia has no misgivings about her future and love. She's past the stage of silly girl crushes and vows she’ll never fall in love, not after what she saw love do to her mother. Portia wants nothing to do with prostitution—her mother’s occupation. Portia's an educated woman now, determined to safeguard her heart.