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The Butler Did It    by Kasey Michaels order for
Butler Did It
by Kasey Michaels
Order:  USA  Can
Harlequin, 2004 (2004)
* *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

For the past five years, Morgan Drummond, Marquis of Westham has absented himself from hearth, home, and the London peerage after an embarrassing debacle involving a duel over a woman. Morgan returns from his self-imposed exile expecting to find that his reliable butler has kept everything in order. Unfortunately this is not the case. When Morgan opens his front door he finds that Thornley has allowed a diverse assortment of characters to make themselves quite at home.

His guests include an elderly con man who insists he's got a perfect scheme for turning lead into gold; a seamstress who might be a murderess; and even more distressing, Miss Emma Clifford and her entire odd family. Morgan wants nothing more than to toss them all out on their ears, and maybe fire his butler while he's at it. But Miss Clifford will hear nothing of the sort. She's come to London intending to find herself a rich husband, and if she must resort to blackmailing the dashing Marquis to succeed, then so be it. Soon, neither one of them is ready to admit that their battle of wills and wits is swiftly turning into a torrid affair of the heart.

Veteran author Michaels gives her fans another multi-layered and often highly amusing period piece in The Butler Did It. The sizzling dialogue - not to mention the sizzling attraction between the much put-upon Morgan and the headstrong and independent Emma - are, as always, well done. A wonderful cast of secondaries and Michaels' attention to historical detail rounds out this enjoyable tale.

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