Cover Image: White Knight Needed

White Knight Needed

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Member Reviews

3/5 Stars 

** I received this as an E-ARC from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for my honest review, Thank you!**

I don't really have a lot of feelings. Everything just felt very okay. I wasn't really in love with the writing or the characters. I found that beause I didn't really feel a connection to anything that i had a hard time becoming invested and wanting to actually read it. I do however think that there are people who wuld adore this book so I would still recommend it for those that seem interested.
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White Knight Needed by Betina Krahn is book Two in the Reluctant Heroes Series. This is the story of Norah Capshaw and Barclay Howard. Barclay has taken on the responsibility of guardian to his nephew. Barclay wasn't able to find someone that would except him, so he felt love was off the table for him. Norah was on the run from a bad person when she is thrown in a holding cell. This is where she meets Barclay who too was thrown in the same cell. Norah and Barclay end up helping each other which of course leads to feelings between the two. Enjoyed their story.
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I dipped in and out of this book rather than reading it in one go, and that is because the pacing was gradual and there was a lot going on. 

Nora Capshaw is an orphaned lady, down on her luck, in order to escape from a brutish stalker who seems intent on hunting her down, she is swept into a lecture on free love, and when the building is raided she is hauled off to jail with the other attendees. Barclay Howard notices Nora immediately, and as he tries to help her, she is scared by his size and his ferocious appearance, and as a result they are both jailed. Nora loses her job as a tutor as a result of her incarceration.

Barclay Howard is grandson to the Earl of Northrup, and is an imposing man with intimidating looks, he has forever been judged by his looks rather than his character, and has had a tough childhood being brought up on his grandfather's estate, but not the heir.

Nora finds herself destitute and Barclay offers her a position as tutor to his ward \9 he has just been appointed guardian to the next earl, Elias, who is 6. Even though Nora is scared of Barclay, she accepts.

My main problem with the story was Nora to be honest. firstly she is so scared of Barclay, and really never makes amends for her misunderstanding of him at all. She also is TSTL over and over again, when they are out on the street - Eli is abducted in her charge, when she follows the villain, she reveals herself. 

The second half of the book picks up a lot, when she realises her estranged uncle is in league with the man who has been following her, determined that she knows something about hidden gold in Scotland. This leads to Norah and Barclay travelling to meet her mother's family, and a fun plot about gold mining, hiding wealth, the bonds of family and some other twists and turns.

I voluntarily read an Advance Reader Copy of this book and all opinions are my own.
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A fun book to read. The story opens as Barclay gives up on the traditional round of balls and so on to find a wife. Described as "a beast of a man," Barclay is tall, broad-shouldered, and can have an intimidating air about him. He does not fare well in Society's ballrooms, as the current crop of debutantes looks down on him and treats him badly. Instead, he attends a lecture on "free love" that changes his life. In addition to his courtship woes, Barclay finds out that his grandfather has died, leaving him as guardian to the new Earl, a six-year-old boy.

Norah Capshaw is an orphan whose guardian recently died, leaving her with no family or support. She has a job as a tutor for adults that barely makes ends meet. When we first see Norah, she has snuck into the "free love" lecture to escape a man following her. A raid by the local constabulary shortly follows the arrival of her pursuer. Norah is stunned when she is accosted by a man claiming to be rescuing her and fights back, saying she needs no help. Both are promptly arrested and thrown in jail.

This was a different kind of introduction between the two characters. Barclay tries to be gallant and gets his efforts thrown back in his face by a stubbornly independent Norah. He writes off the encounter, only to see her again in another set of dire circumstances, where he again attempts to help her. By this point, I was a bit frustrated by Norah's intransigence. The third blow came when she found her belongings had been searched and her pursuer seen again. She accepted Barclay's assistance this time, though she wasn't very gracious about it. I loved how Barclay found a way for them to help each other. He offers her a job as a tutor to his cousin, getting her out of London and helping him with the boy.

I liked Barclay. He's a good man who has had a rough go of life through no fault of his own. His favorite book is Ivanhoe which influences many of his actions. As each bit of his past was revealed, I was amazed at how well he turned out. I had a little more trouble warming up to Norah. Just as so many others did, she seemed to judge him by his appearance and expect the worst of him. That slowly changed as she got to know him.

There is a brief interlude in York, where they go to begin Barclay's guardianship of young Elias. There are some funny and heartbreaking moments as the mischievous and undisciplined youngster quickly works his way into their hearts. This also gives Norah time to investigate her few possessions from her parents and discover a previously unknown family member. The meeting does not go as Norah hoped, and Barclay's protective instincts are aroused. Their decision to go to Scotland to investigate further was no surprise.

This part of the book was full of family found, unexpected secrets, a mysterious treasure, and danger tying it all together. I loved the joy and acceptance Norah found in Scotland. The MacFerguses were a fantastic group, and I enjoyed getting to know them. Things got a little crazy when they revealed the truth about the treasure—Barclay's horror over the legalities contrasted with their belief that they were doing nothing wrong. The tension increased when Norah's pursuers grew close. I loved that Norah came up with a plan that would solve several problems at once. The final confrontation became a nail-biter when the plan didn't go quite as expected, but I loved how it turned out.

I enjoyed the development of the relationship between Barclay and Norah. He was taken with her from the first time he saw her, though their first few meetings were antagonistic. Norah was attracted from the start but was also wary of him. I liked Barclay's protectiveness, even when she wasn't appreciative of it. I was happy when Norah finally started to see past Barclay's exterior to the man inside. There were still a few clashes, such as dealing with Elias's behavior. There are some sweet moments when Norah relies on Barclay's strength, and you can see her heart softening. The fun begins when they hit Scotland, and their time together is less regimented. The attraction between them continued to grow, as did their feelings. With danger bearing down, I had to laugh at Barclay's non-proposal and promise for later. He came through in a unique manner. The ending was sweet, romantic, and fun.
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Barclay Howard has given up on finding true love for himself and it’s a good thing too since he’s now been saddled with the role of guardian to his six-year-old nephew, the heir to their grandfather’s earldom. He has no idea how to raise a child and now has no choice but to move to the family seat in Yorkshire to assess the situation. Unfortunately, before he can leave, he finds himself swept up in a raid of the free love meeting he’s attending and spends a night in jail when he’s captured whilst trying to save an innocent woman who’s unhappy with his rescue attempts. Unbeknownst to him, she’s about to make his life even more complicated.

Norah Capshaw was merely seeking refuge from the brutish man who’d been trailing her around the city, but her choice of hiding place in the free love meeting ends in her spending a night in jail, which sees her straight to losing her job as a tutor for adults. Unemployed and without any family, Norah is nonetheless determined to make it on her own, but when she crosses paths with Barclay again and it becomes apparent that staying in the city will be dangerous for her thanks to the man who continues to pursue her, she accepts Barclay’s offer of a position as tutor to his young nephew. She soon finds Barclay himself irresistible, despite her reservations about trusting him. The attraction between them grows even as it becomes apparent that the mysterious man from London is still following Norah, which leads to them investigating her routes in Scotland and the both of them finding much more than they’d ever expected.

This story was definitely a very slow burn, but given the abundance of tropes at play here, I didn’t have much trouble hanging in there with this story, even if the flow was a little odd at times. Given how the first book in this series was, I went into this one expecting good writing and prepared for low steam, but even I was a bit disappointed by the lack of any steam at all. With such good tension built between these two, it was just a letdown, especially since I think given how Barclay had always been treated poorly and like a beast, seeing a gentler side of him and having him finally get to experience love and physical affection would’ve been extra satisfying. I think I also needed them to have that closeness more just because of how mean women in general and the heroine especially had been to him (for no good reason), and I just wanted more vindication for him on that front. Which brings me to my mine gripe with this story: the heroine, Norah. She made some of the dumbest decisions she possibly could have over the course of this story. Sure, this gave Barclay the opportunity to rescue her and look good, but still, it brought a lot of eyerolls. She’s very suspicious of Barclay and set against him from the get-go but for no apparent reason when he’s done nothing but be a perfect gentleman and try his best to help her, despite her ungratefulness and hostility toward him.

Norah just played right into treating Barclay like a beast just like every other woman in his life before and that makes it hard to get behind her as a heroine. Even when she started to actually get to know him as a person, rather than judging his outward appearance, she was still annoyingly hesitant about it, which also seemed unfounded given his solicitousness towards her. Barclay is referred to as a beast incessantly but the only reason I find for it is that he’s very tall and I guess a couple of his teeth are a bit pointy and ‘wolfish,’ but many romance heroes are described as having wolfish smiles and being exceedingly large or tall, so I’m not exactly sure why it’s not also charming on him. These factors lessened the romance of this story immensely and when you add to that the large amount of focus that is placed on this terrible, bratty kid, it’s sometimes hard to remember that you’re actually reading a romance. Barclay does his best to stop the boy from being such an entitled brat and everyone else around him, especially Norah, undermines him every step of the way, expecting violence from him when he's given absolutely no indication, he is in any way prone to violence. I just found this to be absurd.

The latter half of the book almost felt like a completely different story as Norah, Barclay, and the boy, Elias, venture to Scotland. I loved that setting and the story did improve there, (though it was never so boring that I wanted to throw it down, even before that change). There was a liberal use of dramatic irony in this section that helped build the tension and reader interest, which did a lot to move the story along but sadly not much to remind you that it’s a romance you’re reading. Overall, I did think this was worth the read, despite my frustrations with it. I wanted to be shown more of the characters' development, but I enjoyed the writing style, and I’ll probably continue the series.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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From the cover I thought this was a medieval romance. Nope! This is set in Victorian England in the 1880's. Barclay Howard is the guardian of the new earl, his first cousin. Elias is only six years old and loves to play pranks. Norah Capshaw continues to be rescued by Barclay Howard. A tutor in a school, she loses her job and is hired by Barclay to be Elias' new teacher. Norah is kidnapped for information of a family  treasure. Barclay takes Norah to Scotland to find her family for answers about the treasure. His protection of Norah and their attraction to each other can only lead to love. Fast paced with villains and a very clever way to catch them. Barclay is big and tough on the outside, but a softie on the inside. 
4 1/2*STARS *
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book.
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This was an entertaining, well-written book. It was fun, steamy, held my interest and I didn't want to put it down. I enjoyed this book and look forward to reading more books by this author.
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It was a slow and sweet retelling of Beauty and the Beast with a child as the main connection between the main characters.
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Its not what you think. 

Barclay was looking for freelove in the 1880's. Its not what he found. 
Instead, he gets pinched (jailed) with Norah. 
The terminologies and dialog took some getting used to but, Barclay and Norah were genial. 
This is not a risky read, more of a sweet read.
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3.5 stars for a good read... I liked the book.

Norah & Barclay - both likable characters and I started warming up to both of them as the story developed. 

Part of a series but can be read as a standalone.
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Barclay Howard is bigger and burlier than your average gentleman… and thus he has found himself to be somewhat of an antidote to the fairer sex. As a result he is more often found behind the pages of his Ivanhoe novel than out and about attempting to court a fair lady.

But when his path crosses with down on her luck Norah Capshaw, his white knight complex rises up to make him go above and beyond again and again to be her hero… even though she is incredibly reluctant to the idea!

This was a fun adventure romance filled with roadside hijinks, and a family mystery.

Barclay was a perfect hero in this book. He was always there offering support and rescue to Norah. On the other side Norah’s resistance of Barclay and his efforts was the only wet blanket on this otherwise delightfully sweet romance!  

Overall, this is my second Betina Kran book and I find her writing very light hearted and action packed. Definitely a fun read.

This is the second book of the series, but it can easily be read as a stand alone. The previous couple makes an appearance in this story.

White Knight Needed by Betina Krahn is scheduled to release March 29th, 2022.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Kensington Books through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
 
#WhiteKnightNeeded #BetinaKrahn #NetGalley #pinkcowlandreads
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Ultimately, I thought this book rather lackluster. The writing was good, and the characters were well developed and likable. However, it progressed slowly, and I found it somewhat boring.

This story pairs Norah Capshaw, an impoverished gently-reared lady, with Barclay Howard, a beastly-sized gentleman. Norah is having a tough time keeping a job and finds she’s being followed by a disagreeable man. She slips into a radical lecture where Barclay is in attendance that later gets broken up by the police. Barclay tries to help Norah, observing that she is only in the lecture to escape a pursuer, however Norah thinks Barclay is just another pursuer, and they both end up arrested. Barclay and Norah have another unplanned meeting, which leads to another, more successful rescue. Barclay ends up employing Norah as a tutor for his newly appointed charge. The story has a slow buildup in the romance, and a fair bit of action along the way. I was never quite sure what would happen next, but I was also not terribly interested in what would happen next. It didn’t engage me well.

Krahn has an easy, humorous writing style. I don’t want to give the wrong impression that this is a weak or poorly executed story. It really is a solid story. If looking for one that has a good mystery and a slow build up, this may be a good option. It just didn’t work for me well. I really enjoy Krahn, generally, but this was more of a miss for me. I am looking forward to the next book in the series, featuring the most intriguing character in this book, Randville.

<I>Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for a chance to read and review this book. Views are my own.
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I recieved a free copy from netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
The first chapter made me hesitant to continue as I didn't know what to expect but I really enjoyed this book.
This was a fun read with adventure and finding family.
Norah ducks into a free love meeting escaping a man chasing after her.  This leads to her spending the night in jail.  But she is bailed out by Barclay who was also arrested.
Barclay is fascinated by the pretty woman that he seems to constantly rescue. And when he becomes guardian of a 6 year old Earl, he needs a tutor.
I liked the relationship between Barclay and Norah.  Barclay is the epitome of a big soft teddy bear.  
I liked the mystery of Norah finding her family.  And the threat of the man following her.
I can't wait for the next book by this author.
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Just as Barclay Howard declares himself finished with the idea of true love and in pursuit of the more pragmatic “free love,” he is thrust into another sort of commitment: guardian to his little nephew, Elias Barclay hasn’t a clue about children and now must quickly relocate to his family estate. Norah Capshaw was fleeing a brute when she found herself swept into a lecture hall, jailed, and jobless. Without a penny or a relative to her name, she has sworn never rely on others, much less look for a hero. But she can’t resist Barclay’s offer of a position as tutor to his nephew. But a mysterious man is following her, then Norah finds papers from her father & learns she has relatives, so they journey to Scotland.
The second book in the series & it’s very easily read on its own, although we do catch up with Rafe from book one. A well written book which started slowly but the pace did build as Barr & Norah travelled to Scotland. I loved how Barclay & Norah’s relationship changed & grew, of course I loved Eli & how he changed from a spoilt, wild boy into a happy loving boy. The characters are well portrayed & have depth. A very nice mix of adventure, mystery & romance, not a steamy novel by any means but the chemistry between Barclay & Norah grew as their feelings changed. The character who intrigued me was Randville & I believe his story is next.
My honest review is for a special copy I voluntarily read
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A nice twist on the Beauty and the Beast story. Barclay Howard has never felt loved, his grandfather wasn’t the loving type. Thinking that the Free Love lecture he was attending was something totally different than what it actually was. On top of his disappointment the police are raiding the meeting. Seeing a women in distress he tries to escape with her, but she attacks him with her hat pin. This gave the police enough time to arrest them and others. After spending a night in jail Norah Capshaw doesn’t realize the reason she and all the others were released was the Mr. Howard posted the bail. 
Their paths crossed several times and looks are not what is important in life. Many laugh out loud parts, love Barclay ward! The romance is slowing building, but the adventure is great.
Thank you NetGalley for this ARC. I am voluntarily posting an honest review after reading an Advance Reader Copy of this story. #NetGalley #WhiteKnightNeeded
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What if the beast is a knight at heart …

I loved Barclay instantly, well I already liked him from the previous book, a bear with a heart of gold.
And knight he really is, while he hides his gentleness behind the armor of his size and aloofness, he is a man of principles and honor. Never he will let someone in need behind.
Thus how he rescues not once or twice but third time Norah, despite her flagrant distrust and her low opinion of him.
Barclay is used of being overlooked or judged for his appearance, a beast he looks like, a beast they think he is when he is such a gentle and kind soul, one resigned of loneliness as few people have been able to see past his figure.
Norah is no exception, from her lack of faith in general in strangers, even more if they are male. Plus she has heard whispers about the beastly Howard, a man who eats debutantes for his breakfast. Yet he is the sole person who lends a helping hand when she is in dire straight and in need of more than simple rescuing. 
But her trust is not easily won, still slowly Barclay’s goodness and matter of fact view of life will break her walls until they crumble down and she can not anymore lie to herself about the man who stands alongside her at every turn and event, becoming her rock and her future.

The author with this new release gives a new dimension to the beauty and beast myth, no haughty prince but a man faulted for his beastly size and a beautiful heroine struggling to trust. Adding to it, a wild ride from England to Scotland, with breeches eating goat, a willful child and a mystery to solve all the while dodging kidnapping attempts.
I’m rather intrigued by next book hero, Randville, easy to guess there is more to him than his tailor/valet’s suit.
4.5 stars

𝗦𝘁𝗲𝗮𝗺 𝗹𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗹 kisses

I have been granted an advance copy by the publisher, here is my true and unbiased opinion.
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A solid historical. My only warning: this is a slow burn with nothing beyond kissing. But there is plenty of mystery and intrigue to distract you.

Also a perfect palate cleanser between steamy reads.

Barclay spots Norah as she ducks into a meeting. And notices that she's being followed by a rough-looking man. When the meeting is broken up Barclay tries to help her escape the police and the man following her when she resists they are arrested.

Later, Nora loses her job, and Barclay runs into her again. This time helping her flee the unruly customers where she was working and later again that night when someone tries to grab her again.

Barclay offers her a job. He's just become guardian to his nephew, the next earl. And he needs someone to tutor his nephew.

Their attraction is growing and when she finds out she has living relatives he helps her local them and accompanies her to make sure they check out.

They find themselves embarking on an adventure that takes them all the way to Scotland and grandparents she'd never met.
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Barclay Howard is done with love.  Unfortunately, he's not done with responsibility, saddled with his young nephew.  Setting off to his family estate, he runs into the penniless Norah Capshaw.  On the run, Norah is without a job or options--until Barclay offers a position as his nephew's tutor. 

But despite the quickly growing attraction between Barclay and Norah, she finds herself threatened by the man who pursued her before.  As she and Barclay attempt to come together in the Scottish Highlands, they must dodge threats both emotional and physical.

That all sounds great--and the cover is, too.  It's a well done romance, to be sure.  But it is by and large a clean romance, which I don't think the cover really... belies.  And that did bother me.  When I look at a book with that cover, I think I'm getting something much hotter than this book actually is.

Don't get me wrong, this is a fun book.  There's a great bit of banter between the leads, and I loved the Scottish setting and its adventurous tone.  But ultimately, there could've been a lot more going on here--not just in terms of sex, but in terms of plot as well.

If you're looking for something quick and sweet, this could be for you.  It just wasn't right for me.
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⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I enjoyed this Beauty And The Beast, unruly child adventure.  I laughed out loud at times.  The romance was sweetly passionate.  Barclay Howard is burly and is awkward towards women, yet he has a heart of gold.  Known as “The Howard Beast” by debutantes, he has reconciled at never finding a woman who could fall in love with him.  Norah Capshaw is alone in this world, running from mysterious men, not knowing what they want.  Norah is lonely, scared, yet independent.  Barclay and Norah start their turbulent romance when Barclay saves Noah from being abducted at a free love rally.  On top of that,  Barclay has just inherited guardianship of an unruly, spoiled six-year-old heir to the earldom.

Barclay was a wonderful character.  Barclay is self-conscious but would do anything for those he loves.  He is shocked and angry when he is shackled with the responsibility of this young child but takes the role seriously, being both equal parts disciplined and loving with the child.  He loves and corrects Elias as needed as good as any father.  Norah was alone and scared, yet I admired her fierceness and independence.  I loved how after her first shock, Norah sees beneath Barclay’s rough exterior to the wonderful, caring man inside.  The couple’s sweet romance is peppered with passionate kisses, and it feels genuine and organic.

The plot flowed well; I sometimes felt there could be more substance to the story.  However, I thoroughly enjoyed the entertaining storyline, laced with humor and adventure.  Elias, the young earl, was simultaneously a thorn in the main character’s sides and a ray of funny sunshine.  The secondary characters caught my attention, and I was invested in each of them.  White Knight Needed is the second book in the Reluctant Heroes series.  This was my first journey into this series, and I wasn’t disappointed.  Betina Krahn is on my radar for light, humorous romances with plenty of adventure and heart.  

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advance copy of this book through Netgalley and the publisher.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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3.5 stars

That book was enjoyable but I started to get annoyed by the end of the lack of romance scenes. Didn't feel a real connection between both MCs. But the plot was well made, and there was a lot of twist and turns.
It was more of a mystery book than a romance. It was enjoyable and sometimes I would catch myself tearing a bit. 

Thank you NetGalley for providing this arc
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