A Reckless Match is the first book in the new series Ruthless Rivals by Kate Bateman. I was immediately drawn to this new series once I read the tag line “The first in a new regency romance series about two feuding families and reunited childhood enemies whose hatred turns to love.” Regency romance? Check. Feuding families? Check. Enemies to lovers? Check! It looked like this book had some of my favorite things.
The two feuding families are the Montgomery’s and the Davies. Their feud has been going on so long that no one can really remember the origin. Some think it was over land. Some think it was over a woman. Some even think it was over a pig. Regardless, the feud has been passed down through the generations including the present generation of Maddie and Gryff.
Maddie is a bit reckless. She’s not a proper regency woman but is not a complete wallflower bluestocking either. She just knows that she isn’t in a hurry to get married and thinks that repetitive nature of proper decorum is a bit boring. She also enjoys archelogy and would rather be out digging than attending a fancy ball. I rather liked the character of Maddie as she is intelligent, strong-willed, and loyal to her family. She doesn’t necessarily understand the feud with the Davies but, she honors it.
It also helps that Gryff Davies drives her crazy. He has been tormenting her since they were kids! Of course, you know what they say…you tend to tease the ones you like more. And this is exactly the case with Gryff. He is all grown up now and is a well known rake in society. He has returned to the Davies estate to help manage things as the new earl. From his first initial present day encounter with Maddie, you could tell that he was attracted to her but, was desperately trying to fight it. Gryff is also very loyal to his family and if I’m honest a little bit dense. It takes him so long to figure out the true meaning behind all of his teasing.
Maddie and Gryff have chemistry together which I think much of which was based on the fact that they were supposed to be enemies. When they become entangled in a battle of wits and survival, you can feel it jumping off the page. There are also smugglers, secret caves, and meddling families to help them along the way. Their romantic journey is hilarious and also heartwarming as they battle the instinct to be at each others throats and look beneath the surface. I did find it a bit drawn out towards the end but, did like the way everything was wrapped up.
A Reckless Match was a good introduction to the Montgomery and Davies feud. I look forward to reading more about them as the supporting characters are featured in their own books. Bring on the feuding enemies turned lovers! Hopefully we’ll have glimpses of Maddie and Gryff again too.
Rating: 3 Stars
**I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**