Book Review

Book Review: The Heiress Gets a Duke (The Gilded Age Heiresses #1) by Harper St. George

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Historical Romance
Length: 316 pages
Author: Harper St. George
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: January 26th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Even a fortune forged in railroads and steel can’t buy entrance into the upper echelons of Victorian high society—for that you need a marriage of convenience.

American heiress August Crenshaw has aspirations. But unlike her peers, it isn’t some stuffy British Lord she wants wrapped around her finger—it’s Crenshaw Iron Works, the family business. When it’s clear that August’s outrageously progressive ways render her unsuitible for a respectable match, her parents offer up her younger sister to the highest entitled bidder instead. This simply will not do. August refuses to leave her sister to the mercy of a loveless marriage.

Evan Sterling, the Duke of Rothschild, has no intention of walking away from the marriage. He’s recently inherited the title only to find his coffers empty, and with countless lives depending on him, he can’t walk away from the fortune a Crenshaw heiress would bring him. But after meeting her fiery sister, he realizes Violet isn’t the heiress he wants. He wants August, and he always gets what he wants.

But August won’t go peacefully to her fate. She decides to show Rothschild that she’s no typical London wallflower. Little does she realize that every stunt she pulls to make him call off the wedding only makes him like her even more.

HIGHLY ENJOYABLE.

My first historical romance y’all. I’m not upset about it one bit. I really enjoyed this read and look forward to the next book.

One of the things that worked for me here was the open door scenes didn’t take over the book. I thought they fit in exactly where they should go and furthered the story rather than took me out of it.

Ohemgee, Evan. I loved him y’all. Such a great love interest. He was a “typical Duke,” but also seemed to really value what August wanted. He wanted to ensure she would choose him and not feel like she was being wholly forced into their marriage. It was really sweet and endearing to see his efforts.

August was a gem. I love her fiery attitude and strength of character. She knew what she wanted and took charge of the situations before her. August and Evan clearly had chemistry from the get go. I loved their meet-cute and the love story that followed.

The expected miscommunication didn’t arise intense feelings of annoyance in me. I actually thought it worked perfectly. It made sense for the plot and gave both characters an opportunity to breathe and see what they wanted. Not to mention, gave such a cute coming together at the end. All smiles for me!

Overall audience notes:

  • Historical romance
  • Language: a little strong
  • Romance: kisses to two open door scenes
  • Violence: boxing
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: loss of a loved one, forced marriage

Instagram || Goodreads

Book Review

Book Review: The Widow and the Highlander (Tales from the Highlands #1) by Martha Keyes

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Historical Romance
Length: 290 pages
Author: Martha Keyes
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date: February 27th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

She needs to be protected. He’ll take on the job…for a price.

Christina MacKinnon is secretly relieved to be a widow. She is equally desperate to distance herself from the clan of her dead husband, but as the heir to his estate—one she needs in order to support her siblings—she must first stave off both the advances and threats of the man next in line to inherit. It seems the only person she can turn to is a nearby stranger who seems inclined to help her. But he has a request…

Freshly returned from the war, Lachlan Kincaid has one aim: to see justice served to the MacKinnons for betraying his family years ago and depriving him of his inheritance. While biding his time at a nearby inn, he discovers the death of the MacKinnon laird—whose widow has inherited everything. The way to accomplish his goal is becoming more evident, but the path is murkier than he could have foreseen.

As Christina’s and Lachlan’s lives intersect, it becomes clear that their separate aims may well only be achievable if they join forces. But to do so is to court more danger, and it requires a sacrifice Christina isn’t sure she’s prepared to make.

DRAWN TO THE HIGHLANDS.

Really though, put a book in a Scottish setting and I am drawn like a moth to a flame. I love how well written and put together this novel was.

There was a tender, unmitigated romance that I found myself getting wrapped up into. I adored the two strong leads, Christina and Lachlan. Both with vastly different backgrounds that came together in a marriage of convenience (MY FAV) to outwit some unruly family members. I even found myself okay with another trope (which has a spoilery nature so I won’t say here) that I’m generally not a fan of. Keyes wrote both characters with passion and thoughts that made sense and I could get behind even when they were upset or frustrated.

I felt transported to the highlands and saw the set-up for book two that I know I’m going to love. These characters made the story and I love the pacing and how in depth it was even at a shorter page length (under 300).

Overall audience notes:

  • Historical romance
  • Language: none
  • Romance: kisses to closed door
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: kidnapping, mentions and recounting of past spousal abuse (physical), near drowning, war injuries

Instagram || Goodreads

Book Review

Book Review: Manor for Sale, Baron Included (A Romance of Rank #1) by Esther Hatch

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Regency Romance
Length: 247 pages
Author: Esther Hatch
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date: February 25th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

She has everything Lord Farnsworth wants, including his manor.

Lord Farnsworth would rather rot in debtor’s prison than sell the one place that feels like home to him—his mother’s manor. That is, until he meets the woman who wants to buy it. Sally Duncan is beautiful, intelligent, and as rich as a baron—a rich baron, not a cash-strapped one like Lord Farnsworth. She’s the solution to every one of his financial problems and is bewitching to boot. All he needs to do is sell her his beloved manor and then charm her to the altar, and the manor will be his again. Simple, right?

But nothing is simple when Sally starts tearing apart his ancestral home and renovating it in a way no one would consider tasteful. She is wreaking havoc on everything, but he cannot give up on owning his mother’s estate again, nor can he imagine anyone but Sally as his wife.

And so he sticks with his plan.

What a horrible mistake. 

ADORABLE & FUN

I had a good time with this one! It was a quick regency read that put me in a good mood and had me smiling throughout. The love interest, John, was ridiculously goofy, but also very endearing. I loved Sally and I thought it was amazing that she was a business owner and extremely independent. They were a great mix of opposites attract.

This was a new story in the regency world for me too. It was great having Sally purchase a house and a gentleman who had to work hard to prove himself to her. I feel like usually it’s the other way around, or at least the whole idea of everyone wants to be with a baron. This really turned it on its side and I looooved that. Not to mention, I really liked all of the boxing aspects!

Not very long, but just the right length. I thought some communication would have solved some of the problems. Yet, I do think the resolutions at the end came together. I understood why John and Sally both had to work through some things before being able to be together. Charming and sweet, I can’t wait for the next story!

Overall audience notes:

  • Regency romance
  • Language: none
  • Romance: kisses
  • Violence: physical altercation
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: loss of a parent, a neglected sibling

Instagram || Goodreads

Book Review

Book Review: The Nabob’s Daughter by Jess Heileman

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Regency Romance
Length: 444 pages
Author: Jess Heileman
Publisher: Vagabond Publishing
Release Date: June 30th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

She’ll do anything to escape an arranged marriage. He’ll do anything to help her.

Honora Crauford relishes her life in India. So when her father informs her of his latest business transaction—marrying her off to a bankrupt nobleman in England—her only hope for returning home is to convince her betrothed, by whatever antics necessary, that a marriage to her comes at a cost that not even the greatest fortune can justify.

Graham Whitworth can hardly believe his wretched luck. It seems the only way to save his family’s insolvent estate is to comply with his father’s demands and marry the extremely wealthy, but utterly ridiculous, nabob’s daughter. But when Honora missteps, Graham discerns her farce and begins to see who she truly is—a most impressive lady. A lady likely capable of fixing his family’s financial troubles.

Realizing they both desire freedom, Graham and Honora join forces to restore the Whitworth estate and return Honora to her beloved India. But sometimes love has its own agenda, and the revoking of a once undesirable arrangement may just prove to be the greatest sacrifice of all.

DID NOT DISAPPOINT.

The hype in the regency community about this book is real, and I’m so glad it lived up to what I was hoping for.

Honora is the definition of the head-strong woman who stubbornness occasionally gets in her own way. I liked her character arc and her ability to recognize and acknowledge her faults and when she needed to apologize. Honora stood for her choices too and was a character I wanted to see get her HEA.

Graham was adorable. I loved how tender he was and how open to Honora he spoke. With a slight misstep in their first meeting to a friendship that became more, I was enraptured. He was incredibly sweet and all of Graham’s quiet moments with Honora had me swooning.

The plot was more fresh than most regencies and felt like a new rush of air as I read. My only lower point was that it felt a bit long too me. It might have been so much of the accounting commentary and scenes that took away from the main focus of the romance.

This was a wonderful read though and I look forward to Heileman’s future books. Based off of this one I think there’s more swoony romances ahead.

Overall audience notes:

  • Regency romance
  • Language: none
  • Romance: kisses
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: loss of a mother

Instagram || Goodreads