The Widow's Auction

Short Story in Fantasy Anthology

By Sabrina Jeffries

Jove - April 2002

Reissued ebook Novella

Intermix - August 2016

Historical Romance

Isobel Lamberton took her role as director on the board for the Lamberton Boys' School seriously, and she had no intention of allowing Justin Antony, Marquess of Warbrooke, to dismiss her plans. She wanted to give these children opportunities they otherwise could never have. He intended to bring a factory onto school grounds. This was just one more example of how irresponsible, dismissive, and totally arrogant he was.

Isobel's friend implied it was attraction that caused the sparks to fly between them. Isobel disagreed. Anyways, she had already married once, and although she deeply cared for the man she had married, she did not wish to marry again. She had several reasons, only one of which was finding a man who would allow her to continue with her charitable endeavors. The other reasons were far more personal.

Justin knew Isobel to be a judgmental widow with a superiority complex. When he found her in a potentially compromising situation, he knew he needed to save her. He would also take the opportunity to chastise her and send her on her way. He never expected to learn Isobel might be the perfect match for him. He only needed to convince Isobel that he was what she needed most. And with a woman as stubborn as Isobel, that would be the most difficult challenge he might ever face.

The Widow's Auction was a funny yet tender romance between two individuals who aren't quite as dissimilar as they each believe. Both Isobel and Justin have strong opinions of each other, but in this unique setting, they open up and reveal parts of themselves nobody else knows. I enjoyed Justin's outrage at Isobel's apparent hypocritical behavior, and how it turned to admiration for all that she had accomplished. And in the end, learning that compromising is truly a way for all to win.

Kathy Andrico -


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