So, I definitely got behind with some of my ARCs and I’m doing my best to catch up by the end of the year so, essentially, pray for me. I really enjoyed both of these books so I’m excited to talk to you about them today. At this point, both of these books are obviously already out and available for purchase if you’re interested!
This Earl of Mine by Kate Bateman
If you’ve been around for a while, you may know that historical romance is a subgenre that has really slid down my list of subgenres I read, but both of these ARCs were utterly delightful. This Earl of Mine is about a woman, Georgiana, who inherited her father’s shipping company, who determines that things would be better for her if she was a widow. Thus, she hatches a plan to marry a man on death row, but when she shows up at the prison, the warden tells her they no longer have a man for that, but present her with Ben. Ben is meant to be shipped off to Australia soon, which is close enough to being a widow. However, turns out Ben is actually Benedict Wylde and he’s undercover. When he shows up in a society ballroom, she is shocked. Adventures ensue.
I was not at all sure about what to expect from this book, other than I knew that Dani (this link will take you to her review) really liked it, which is why I was excited when she sent it to me. Given my general reluctance to get swept up in historical romance lately, I was delighted by how quickly I fell into this book and how much I adored it. The banter and the fun romantic suspense style plot absolutely delighted me and I really loved the fake dating aspect to this book. There really was so much going on, but the romance was fantastic and this book really was different than any other Regency romance I’ve ever read. I’m already looking forward to the next book in the series!
CW: attempted sexual assault
The Widow of Rose House by Diana Biller
I absolutely adored this historical romance too. It’s set during the Gilded Age in New York and features Alva Webster, a widow with quite the scandalous (undeserved) reputation, and Professor Sam Moore, an eccentric and utterly lovable man. Alva bought a new home in Hyde Park and there are many ghost stories that have intrigued Professor Moore and he charmingly pesters Alva about letting him see the home, while also hoping to charm her into agreeing to be in a relationship with him. Alva’s trust issues keep her from trusting Sam, but eventually, she realizes she’s going to have to ask for his help with the ghost problem. And the story goes from there.
The writing of this book is absolutely gorgeous and I loved it so very much. Also, Sam is just… He’s one of the best heroes I’ve ever read. Like, look at this quote:
“There was nothing to be done–he was in love with her, he always would be, and that was that. She was his person. If she was complicated, then he loved her complications too.”
And that’s just Sam. He’s direct and blunt and utterly adorable. Alva is a great heroine in her own right. Her backstory contains a life of trauma, in truth, and watching her learn to trust herself and to navigate those issues is a really great and engaging journey. I am so very excited for the next companion book in this series because I absolutely adored my time with this book. I read it slowly because I liked popping in and out. There are so many fantastic lines in this book. I really just loved it so very much.
I’m extremely grateful to Dani (this link will take you to her review) for sending me along her copy of this ARC as well, but I was also approved on Netgalley for it, so thanks to them as well.
CW: domestic violence (past, but shown on page), discussion of how mental health patients were treated in the past
Have you read either of these? What did you think?