"Unseen Heiress" by Olivia Ritch is a short, Victorian novelette that is entertaining while not particularly deep. The story revolves around Lady Evelyn, a famed debutante with the `bad luck' of a genius IQ, and Colin Landon, a somewhat handicapped and hunted lord. Throughout the story we see a nice if rushed love story, some not so nice relatives, and a good bit of historical reference that adds interest to the plot and background. The Coldesdowne family is one that I found myself wishing to be a part of and Colin, while not as empathizing, was nicely bold yet protective in his pursuit of the clever Eve. Where the story loses ground is in the somewhat necessary brevity of the explanation of the protagonists' romance and particularly in the lack of truly suspenseful drama leading up to the decisions made. I would have also loved to know the reason behind many things such as why Lord Colin was nearly blind (biological or from a progressive accident?) and how Lady Eve so immediately recognized him as the one she had been waiting for. In all, however, I enjoyed this book and was able to finish it in a brief sitting. So, in summary, "Heiress" was just a well-studied, nicely penned, and good-for-a-quick lunch-time read.
Stunningly beautiful Lady Evelyn Hume is pursued by London bachelors for her looks and fortune. Few recognize her extraordinary intelligence, until a most unusual encounter with a partially blind Earl.
Although Colin Livingswell has never seen Eve Hume, he knows more of her heart than any of her admirers. The Earl is determined to show Eve with his words and actions he is worthy of her—but the villain stalking him endangers them both.
Will Colin trust Eve and her family with his dangerous secret in time to save himself? Will Eve trust her heart to view him differently from all her other suitors? For both of them, beauty truly must be in the eyes of the beholder.