Welcome to Sugarbeat’s Books – The Home of the Romance Novel
It is my honour today to post two reviews! These books that I’m discussing today totally blew me away…..I couldn’t put them down!! I participated in a PUBIT event from Barnes & Noble back in the summer and Maureen Driscoll was one of the authors that contacted me. These books are not to be missed by Regency fans. I’m giving away copies as part of the Spooktacular giveaway so make sure you enter to win a copy!
As is often the case when I try to review a book that I really liked, I find myself blabbing away, not making much sense at all. I’ve re-done these reviews several times, trying to convey my love of these books, but forgive me if it seems like I’m still babbling!
Never a Mistress, No Longer a Maid by Maureen Driscoll
Source: I received a copy of this book to read and review from the author
Blurb: Caught behind enemy lines at the Battle of Waterloo, nurse Jane Wetherby is forced to seek shelter with British operative Lord Edward Kellington. After a night of passion, the two are separated. With nothing but the alias Jane used to protect her family, Lord Edward is unable to find the woman he can’t forget.
Seven years later, Jane courts scandal by serving as the unofficial surgeon in the village of Marston Vale. When Edward arrives to formalize his betrothal to a viscount’s daughter in accordance with his late father’s wishes, Jane has no choice but to watch the match proceed. When a threat from the past emerges, Jane must join forces with Edward to safeguard her loved ones. But at what risk to her heart…
Never a Mistress, No Longer a Maid is the story of a highly principled young woman who lived with the consequences of her decisions. This sounds like a harsh statement, or a judgement and I don’t mean it in that fashion at all. I actually mean it as a compliment! Jane Wetherby is caught by the enemy behind their lines at the Battle of Waterloo and the injured Lord Edward Kellington saves her. When he collapses, she drags him to safety, takes the bullet out of him, stitches him up and essentially saves his life. Before the get back to civilization, they make love. This has lasting implications for them both. Jane gets pregnant and once she returns home has to suffer her grandfather’s wrath is subsequently banished with very little income from her inheritance to keep body and soul together. She supplements this income by serving as the surgeon for the poor in the neighbourhood.
Meanwhile, Edward spent years looking for Jane, whom he finds out gave him a false name. The war is now over and he is at home with his family. His brother is pressuring him to settle down and so he goes to visit the family of the woman everyone assumes he will marry. Imagine his surprise to discover Jane in the wilds of Bedfordshire when he goes to visit his potential fiancee!
This is an excellently written story. The two main characters are outstanding! I absolutely love the character of Jane. It is impossible for a woman in that era to be anything other than a caregiver. She will really never be recognized for her medical skills, but she manages to get herself involved in helping the wounded during the war, and she serves the poor of her neighborhood, who would potentially go without medical help as they can’t pay for it. She has her daughter and keeps her rather than giving her away and accepts her banishment and the abuse from her grandfather.
Edward is an upstanding member of the nobility. It is interesting to read about his family and the colorful members that I’m sure we will meet soon! He tries for years to find the woman that he only offered a position of mistress to and is astounded when he discovers her so many years later. He is determined that she not disappear this time and works hard to fit his life around hers.
I was introduced to this author through Barnes & Noble Pubit event in August. Being a huge fan of Historical and Regency Romance, this book looked like something that I would like. I am now working on her second book and learning about another member of the Kellington family. I am amazed that I haven’t heard about Maureen before now, but I encourage everyone to pick up a copy of this book and experience her view of the lives of Edward and Jane. Get yourself a latte and a comfy chair and relax and enjoy an excellent story!
Never Miss a Chance by Maureen Driscoll
Source: I received a copy of this book to read and review from the author
A duke’s daughter isn’t supposed to court scandal in Regency England. She isn’t supposed to involve herself in controversial causes. And she most especially isn’t supposed to expect love in a ton marriage. But Lady Elizabeth isn’t just any duke’s daughter. She’s a Kellington. And her expectations are somewhat higher than most people’s.
Marcus Redmond, the Marquess of Riverton, has been in love with his best friend’s sister for years. When Lizzie’s reputation is damaged, he offers her marriage, hoping she will come to care for him eventually. But can the upright, staid Riverton make a love match with the impulsive, passionate Lizzie – especially when there are those who are determined to come between them?
NEVER MISS A CHANCE is a sizzling romance with a touch of humor. It’s the second book in the Kellington series about the Duke of Lynwood and his four siblings. The series started with NEVER A MISTRESS, NO LONGER A MAID.
Just to be upfront about my bias for this book…..I loved this book, and I loved the character of Lizzie! She has way more balls than most young women of her time and I applaud her! Now that I have that off my chest, on with my description of this story!
Never Miss A Chance is the story of another member of the Kellington family. We met Edward in Never a Mistress, No Longer a Maid. He is one of five members of the Kellington family with the eldest brother being the William, the Duke of Lynwood. William or Liam as his siblings call him, is often placed in the position of calling his siblings on the carpet for some misadvanture. Our story starts with Elizabeth being called to the duke’s study! It seems that she attended a political agitation gathering of ladies. She tries to brave it out, until Liam pulls out her treatise entitled: “Toward the Enlightenment of England: A Treatise for the Reformation of Property Rights, the Rights of Women in Marriage and Universal Suffrage.” Talk about busted! He then starts lecturing her on her possible social ostracism because she had her treatise published in the new paper using her real name. Lizzie is certain he is just blustering and exaggerating the effect her treatise will have. That night she finds out that Liam is correct. She is shunned by some and inappropriately approached by others. The brothers gather around trying to determine what to do. It seems that Marcus Redmond, the Marquess of Riverton already knows what will solve this problem. He will offer to marry Lizzie. He has been in love with her for years – admiring her from a distance. Always careful to be quite proper in her presence as he doesn’t want to lose his friendship with Liam and frankly, he’s afraid of the beating her would receive at the hands of the brothers! Let the games begin! Although Lizzie is shocked at the response to her treatise, she has no intention of backing down.
Liam is surprised when his best friend, Marcus, offers to marry Lizzie. At first he thinks that Marcus is just doing him a favor but time changes his opinion!
Like the first book in this series, I thoroughly enjoyed Never Miss a Chance. Lizzie is spunky, determined, and years ahead of her time. Even in the face of her determined brothers, she doesn’t back down from her ideals! She is one kick-ass heroine who goes after what she wants! Marcus is not what he appears to the average person. He does a great job of hiding his real self from the world. He has loved Lizzie for years. He describes her in the story with the following:
She had the grace of a goddess, thought Marcus Redmond, Marquess of Riverton, and not for the first time. Lady Elizabeth Kellington, Lizzie to her friends and family, of which he was truly neither, was a goddess. Taller than most women, she still only came up to his chin. Black hair, vibrant green eyes, and the ability to light up a room with her smile, Lizzie Kellington was as close to perfect as anyone could be. Well, she was rather outspoken and tended to have some radical ideas, but Riverton had long suspected those were simply the somewhat unpleasant byproducts of a mind that was utterly brilliant for a woman. And, to be honest would stack up rather nicely against a man’s. Unfortunately, she was also his best friend’s sister. Which meant she was strictly off limits.
I think I like this book more than the first one in the series, mainly because I liked Lizzie so much. She simply forged ahead with her beliefs, damn the consequences. She had Marcus running to keep up at times! Although this was a regency romance, the relationship that was forged in this book was closer to an equalitarian relationship that was normal for that time. I liked the character of Marcus also. He didn’t wear his heart on his sleeve. He calmly dealt with all the issues in his life with his serene, thoughtful manner. No one ever privy to his thoughts, except when he finally started to let Lizzie in.
An outstanding story with outstanding characters. I look forward to more from this author! Frankly, I’m looking forward to hearing Liam’s story…….