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The Heir (Windham Series) Mass Market Paperback – December 1, 2010

3.9 out of 5 stars 270 customer reviews
Book 1 of 8 in the Windham Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Burrowes debuts with a luminous and graceful erotic Regency. The earl of Westhaven is determined to avoid his father's marital machinations by remaining in sweltering London while Society departs for the country. Westhaven takes great pleasure in his well-run household until his new housekeeper, Anna Seaton, mistakes his intentions toward a chambermaid and knocks him flat with a fireplace poker. Anna is too educated and polished to have been born to service, but she makes a tender nurse. As their affections grow, Westhaven believes he's found a candidate for marriage who would please him and satisfy his father, but Anna refuses Westhaven's proposal. Her hidden background contains ugly obligations, and she's determined to keep outrunning them even as he tries to change her mind. Burrowes turns familiar tropes into a refreshing and captivating love story that will have readers eagerly awaiting the planned sequels. (Dec.) (c)
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From Booklist

In order to escape the machinations of his father the Duke, Gayle Windham, Earl of Westhaven, is spending the summer in his townhouse in London. His father is desperate for Gayle to get married, going so far as to bribe potential fiancées or threaten them with his lofty connections. The discomfort of the hot sweltering summer is nothing compared to the onslaught of women who do not interest him, a category that, oddly, does not include his new housekeeper. Anna Seaton excels at her position, remembering the earl’s preferences, and making sure he has a well-kept home. But she does remain remote. The more Gayle sees Anna, the more he realizes that she is no ordinary housekeeper: She is beautiful, well-read, and acts and speaks like a true lady. As the two become intimate, he realizes that she is hiding a secret. And while he plans to make her his wife, she is planning her escape. Burrowes’ outstanding debut is a witty, sensual, Regency romance featuring complex characters who ring true to the time period, leaving readers saying huzzah! --Patty Engelmann
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Product Details

  • Series: Windham Series (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca (December 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1402244347
  • ISBN-13: 978-1402244346
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 4.2 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (270 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #318,841 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Grace Burrowes started writing as an antidote to empty nest and soon found it an antidote to life in general. She is the sixth out of seven children, raised in the rural surrounds of central Pennsylvania. Early in life she spent a lot of time reading romance novels and practicing the piano. Her first career was as a technical writer and editor in the Washington, DC, area, a busy job that nonetheless left enough time to read a lot of romance novels.

It also left enough time to grab a law degree through an evening program, produce Beloved Offspring (only one, but she is a lion), and eventually move to the lovely Maryland countryside.

While reading yet still more romance novels, Grace opened her own law practice, acquired a master's degree in Conflict Transformation (she had a teenage daughter by then) and started thinking about writing.... romance novels. This aim was realized when Beloved Offspring struck out into the Big World a few years ago. ("Mom, why doesn't anybody tell you being a grown-up is hard?")

Grace eventually got up the courage to start pitching her manuscripts to agents and editors. The query letter that resulted in "the call" started out: "I am the buffoon in the bar at the RWA retreat who could not keep her heroines straight, could not look you in the eye, and could not stop blushing--and if that doesn't narrow down the possibilities, your job is even harder than I thought." (The dear lady bought the book anyway.)

To contact Grace, email her at graceburrowes@yahoo.com.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By TracyJane on December 14, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I thought this book was very well written, but I had a couple of issues that kept me from giving it a higher rating.

First, I felt like I was reading the second book in a series - the whole thing with Gwen left me feeling like I missed something.

Second, the ending just dragged for me - the misconceptions of each others feelings started to grate on my nerves and had me saying enough already!

Other than those two things, I did enjoy the book, the secondary characters were great(Westhaven's brothers and parents especially). I would definately read future books by this author.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Regencies that follow the typical formula can be boring or enjoyable, but Burrowes has taken some standard Regency conventions and created something truly excellent. The writing is lovely, the plot is well-executed, and the characters are interesting and likable. All together, it meets the hardest criteria of a romance novel: did it sweep you away into the story, would you like to meet these people or be these people, and would you like to read the book more than once. The answer to all of these is "yes". Publishers Weekly put this on its list of the five best romances of 2010, and I can see why.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback

Gayle, the earl of Wyndham stays in the city over the summer. He is tired of his father trying to find a woman for him, any woman. But then he notices his pretty housekeeper, or more like she makes him see stars when she knocks him over the head. Anna Seaton is not all she says she is and her secret will lead everyone into danger.

My thoughts:

I was a bit worried when I started because I had read two reviews that wasn't thrilled over this book. But the more I read the more I liked it, and I put those doubts behind me.

Gayle, or Westhaven as they also call him is your typical lord. He has his mistress, he attends all the balls, but the difference is that he does not want some girl right out of the schoolroom that his father throws at him. He wants something more, but mostly he just seems angry at his father. Anna on the other hand is a total enigma, she works as a housekeeper, her deaf sister works there too. She speaks many languages, writes beautifully and speaks way too good not to be hiding something.

Yes there were times when I wanted to hit her over the head. She was just so stubborn, that stupid woman, but luckily Westhaven was a man who knew what he wanted and would not let go. He wanted to win her over and I did like that side of him, because he knew she loved him, but she was just too worried about others, which is a good thing, but she should have taken care of herself too.

The thing that kept me reading and reading was the mystery part. It was just killing me not knowing who she really was, what she had done and what she was running from. So that was the best part of this book.

The romance was also good, it seemed like they could not have each other, she wanted to keep running, he wanted the truth.
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Comment 70 of 78 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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there were so many disconnects in this novel, very distracting:
-The issue mentioned by so many reviewers - a duke's heir and his houskeeper?
-The hero's father (the duke) initally tries to get him to marry his mistress by bribing her to get pregnant - even more ridiculous.
-Later, the hero asks if his parents will receive the heroine after we know her aristocratic background. If his father pursued a prostitute as a daughter-in-law, why the heck wouldn't they be thrilled with an aristocrat?
-So many characters - I was bewildered by the hero's family.
-The hero's former fiancee - like many other reviewers, it felt like this was a second novel, and I had missed her story. And how on earth could the hero's former fiance's daughter be his niece?? Did I miss something?
-When the heroine's Big Secret is revealed, it's incomprehensible how she thinks this makes it impossible for her to marry the hero. In fact, acknowledging her feelings and marrying the hero would be the solution to all her problems and protect her sister at the same time.
-Finally, this novel goes on and on, the misunderstandings at the conclusion were tedious.
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The Earl of Westhaven is the beleaguered heir to The Duke of Moreland. Westhaven decides to stay in his Mayfair mansion during one of the hottest summers in London to escape his father's match making schemes. While in London he becomes intrigued by his housekeeper after she knocks him upside the head with a fireplace poker. Anna is on the run from her previous life masquerading as a servant. What started out as mild curiosity leads to love. Before the H/h can have their HEA they must catch a pair of villains and resolve issues in Anna's past life.
It took some time for me to like Westhaven because the author could not make up her mind as to what type of character she wanted him to be. One moment he was a dutiful son and loving brother that tried to live up to all his father's expectation except when it came to choosing a bride. Or was he the stereotypical aristocrat that used his position to pursue his housekeeper in spite of what was considered proper. Upstairs/downstairs forbidden romances are one of my favorite themes to read about. If done right it can be a very emotional and fulfilling read. The romantic tension between the H/h along with a serious case of "the can't help its" will keep the reader eagerly turning the pages to see how the H/h brake down social barriers that are in place to keep them apart. Unfortunately "The Heir" had very little romantic tension or can't help it feelings between the H/h. I got the impression Westhaven only became interested in Anna because he was in need of a mistress to replace the one he let go. The author did a poor job of creating a history of interest between the H/h before the actual pursuit of the h by the H, lemonade and biscuits are not enough.
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