3.5 stars. Started great and I loved the San Francisco historical setting. I also love the storyline of fake engagements turning into real love. The tension builds and relationship evolves into a deep passion, but about halfway the story starts to become overly predictable and the hero/heroine's relationship quit evolving forward. Although both were very interesting in their own right, as a couple they peaked too soon in the story so it felt like they were just going in circles around each other until the big-finish ending kicked things back into play. The end was a bit over-the-top and syrupy sweet, but there was a clever twist or two to enjoy. This was my first read by Patricia Waddell and I must say I enjoyed her writing style quite a bit. It just didn't 'wow' me. But it was a fun read. Overall, a really good historical set in 1886 San Francisco.