Lack of sleep notwithstanding, I couldn't help but smile and sigh as I reach the ending of this fun little book. Barbara Metzger penned down a delightful Regency, with some very typical and not so typical situations that were very prominent in the time. Such as leaving your kids to be raised by someone else until of an adult age where they can take over the reins in the household, or groomed to take over their rank. In the case with Rockford and his two sons Hugo and Billy. A widower twice over, Rockford had his career to focus on and living the life of his rank. Never giving a second thought to his sons, until he goes to visit his youngest son and finds him not to be where he is suppose to be, but with a local widow! Rockford meets his match in the widow Alissa Henning,whose taken in Billy to care for him with two boys herself, she can't truly believe he just leave his son in the care of elderly staff, while some of the higher staff is stealing under Rockford's nose. Alissa and Rock butt heads on the proper way of raising kids and finding an attraction for one another. This is where the fun truly begins for these two. I loved these characters, the change doesn't happen overnight and at times is pretty slow going. With Rockford on his high horse about keeping his life the way it is, and his sons out of it. So it's great to see Alissa knock him down a few pegs to see the joy of being a parent truly is. Alissa was a strong woman, a great mom and a foe you don't wanna go toe to toe with. She stood up to men who thought to push her aside and show her "place". Alissa doesn't have it, and forms her own way with her now four sons in tow. She gets Rockford to see, his sons for who they are, as beings and not castaways to be used when every. But to see her as a strong woman who won't be pushed around either! Rockford at times made me wanna pull my hair outta my hair, with his "ways" still it was in great humor to see his new thoughts and feelings getting in the way of his way old life."So he drove off, the eminent Earl of Cabbage, behind a donkey (cart), with a bloodied bully unconscious at his feet. Of the three, Lord Rockford wondered, which was the biggest jackass" Rockford always had doubts about his sons, and if they were truly his as both his marriages were not so great, and his wives not so happy with him. So it comes as a great surprise to see how much him and his sons share in common, and the bond that grows between him and Alissa's sons and himself. Many of the doubts and troubles both Rock and Alissa had in their earlier marriages show up with their current marriage with one another, but with time you see the great changes brought on with their big family. "All in all, it was a dreadful, degrading, horrible experience- (the circus) and the most fun Rockford had had in years." I had so much fun with this book from start to finish, even the crazy chase scene toward the end. Each character shined bright from the four sons, to the elderly staff. This was just a plain joy to read.