Book #1 Hawthorne House Series
I’m finding it difficult not to gush when I say how much I adored Miranda’s story! This book had it all: intrigue, romance, an interesting cast of characters and a well paced storyline. I can’t think of a single thing I’d change to make it better. (Because I enjoyed it so much, I’ve included links to giveaways and a free e-book novella of A Lady of Esteem, a great introduction to this series, at the end of this post.)
Plot: Lady Miranda Hawthorne has a scandalous secret. She’s been writing letters for years , pouring out her innermost thoughts and feelings to the Duke of Marshington, a man who’s not a relative and she’s never met. The only thing that keeps her out of trouble is the fact that she never sends them. Until her brother’s new valet, Marlow, accidentally mails one. Miranda is horrified! What will her proper mother think? Then the Duke responds and Miranda continues the highly improper communications. In the meantime, she’s becoming friends with the valet, Marlow, who doesn’t act like the usual servant. All is not as it seems in the Hawthorne House, as Miranda finds herself thrown into the middle of some dangerous situations.
There were a few storylines that were fairly predictable, but the author reveals things early, so even though the reader learns some of their secrets, you still wonder when the other characters will figure out things. There were also some interesting twists and the story was filled with humor, which I really enjoyed. Even when the heroine is in dangerous situations, she’s cracking me up with her inner monologue.
“A lady never sits on the floor.”
A lady probably wasn’t supposed to crawl on her belly through the dirt either.
Characters: Miranda was such a great heroine. She tries to act like the proper lady, but is not always successful. She’s definitely not the damsel in distress, which she proves on more than one occasion. The Duke of Marshington was intriguing, as he’s only mentioned towards the beginning of the book and we don’t actually meet him until later. The fact that he’s disappeared from society hints at some secrets in his life. I adored the valet, Marlow, who tends to follow his own set of rules. Miranda’s brothers, Griffith and Trent are fun and I look forward to seeing more of them in future stories. The sister, Georgina, comes across as a little spoiled and vain, but she’s young, so I hope she’ll mature.
Recommendation: I’d highly recommend this book, even to those who don’t usually read historical. This was not a typical Regency romance. It was packed with spies, intrigue, danger and suspense. There was enough of a faith element to let you know where the characters stand, but it didn’t get preachy at all.
Rating: 5/5 stars
I received a free copy from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review.
Enter to win a copy at The Engrafted Word blog until Sept. 22: here
Do you belong to a book club? Check out this Book Club Prize Pack
Another giveaway from Trish Perry’s blog until Sept 21: here
Free E-Book: A Lady of Esteem (Hawthorne House Prequel Novella) Amazon E-Book
For more fun background information, follow the author on Facebook and Twitter:
And last of all, enter: A Noble Masquerade Package Giveaway
Good luck! I hope you enjoy the story as much as I did.