Love's Arrow Strikes An Impossibly Convenient Target In "How To Cross A Marqess"

Title: How To Cross A Marqess
Series: The Way To A Lord's Heart #3
Author:  Jane Ashford 
Format:  Kindle ERC
Length:  352 pages
Date Of Publication:  August 27, 2019
Publisher:  Sourcebooks Casablanca
Rating: 4 Stars

The Marquess of Chatton and his neighbor Fenella Fairclough have known each other all their lives. They refused to marry each other years ago when their parents demanded it, and they won't concede now―even if circumstances have brought these former enemies much closer than they ever could have anticipated...

Please enjoy this excerpt from:
(The Way To A Lord's Heart #2)
A Lord Apart

“They taste good even if they look ridiculous,” said Daniel. He took a second bite of a Shrewsbury Cake that he’d shaped so ineptly. The room seemed different with Miss Pendleton installed in a chair beside his at the desk. Fresh and lovely in a blue cambric gown, she transformed it from a place of dry drudgery to a chamber full of possibility. She’d seemed harried when she first came in, but the sight of his documents, and the donning of her oddly charming dust sleeves, had visibly settled her.
She finished her cake. “That’s the great thing about pastry,” she said. “It’s still delicious even when you’ve sat on the box. Although eclairs are rather a challenge in that regard.”
Daniel raised an eyebrow. “That sounds like wisdom drawn from direct experience.”
Miss Pendleton nodded. “The…rather squashed looking Shrewsbury Cakes reminded me.”
“I must hear the story.”
Her smile was pensive, a little distracted. “As a special treat, my mother and I sometimes visited a bakeshop in a town near where we lived. Mama used to say the owner was an artist of the oven. On this particular day I insisted on carrying the box with its wonderful pink string. I was so proud, like an altar boy bearing the chalice.” She glanced at him. “I was four years old, you understand. I put the box on the seat of the carriage while I climbed up. Mama stepped in after me and sat on it.” She shook her head. “I hadn’t thought of that in ages.”
Daniel imagined how his own austere mother would have reacted to this misstep. “Was she annoyed?”
“Oh, worse than that.”

My Thoughts
Jane Ashford's How To Cross A Marquess is a sweet tale of childhood friendship turned "second chanc love".

The often times less than diplomatic Marquess of Chagrin may have a hard time controlling his thoughts when attempting to put them into words.
But when the tragic death of his outspoken new bride puts him in the path of his very beautiful, and very much matured childhood friend, and neighbor, Fenella Fairclough. 
She proves to be a woman very hard to forget.

Though whether the reason for this is because of the Lady that she has become. Or her relationship to his late wife and the circumstances surrounding her death. Remains a question that both characters and reader find themselves presented with time and again. As the story progresses.

Although there are a few rather oddly placed supporting cast members who mange to provide rather interesting diversions from the rather plodding storyline offered by Roger and Fenella. 

This odd placement is most markedly emphasized in the part of the story where the ins and outs of the main relationship, and that of all supporting interactions said relationship relies upon to further the story as a whole meet.


The appearance of Arthur Shelton, Earl of Macklin. Who styles himself as a Regency Dr. Phil of sorts in the story's prologue.
But then is not heard from again until he 'appears' on Roger's doorstep. Just in time to be the social saving grace for a rather floundering Fenella. And an 'angel on the shoulders' of Roger. Very interesting ward in tow.

A ward who, just happens to fit the bill for the other plot driving 'odd placement in the story. Fenella's nephew, John.
Who again appears on the doorstep of his aunt.

These happenings wouldn't stand out as odd so glaringly. If not for the fact that their stitching into the fabric of the story is not as seamless as it should be.
This fact, however bothersome. Doesn't really detract from the overall enjoyability of the read. Just a hiccup in the story's continuity.

All things considered. This is a very sweet, balanced, and readable mid-level romance.
That lovers of second chance "happily ever afters" will adore

About Jane
Jane Ashford discovered Georgette Heyer in junior high school and was entranced by the glittering world and witty language of Regency England. That delight was part of what led her to study English literature and travel widely in Britain and Europe. She has lived in New York, Boston and LA. Today, she is somewhat nomadic.

Jane has written historical and contemporary romances. Her books have been published in England, Spain, France, Italy, Sweden, Slovakia, Denmark, Russia, and Latvia, Croatia and Slovenia as well as the U.S. She has been nominated for a Career Achievement Award by RT Book Reviews.

Her website is and her Facebook page is If you'd like to subscribe to Jane's monthly newsletter go to and sign up.

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