This is the first in a series of six Regency romances about the various daughters of a country vicar, similar in style to Georgette Heyer. It's years since I read anything like this, but at one stage I worked my way through pretty much everything Heyer wrote, so when the whole set were on Amazon's Daily Deal, it seemed worth a shot.
This one focuses
on the eldest daughter, but there's enough interaction with the second
in line, Annabelle, to set the stage for book 2 of the series. All these
romances follow a set formula, with no real surprises, the plot (such
as it is) is all about keeping the hero and heroine apart by
misunderstanding, misadventure or circumstance until the very last page
or two. This one is fairly contrived, and some of the early interactions
border on farce.
Of the main characters, Sylvester (the hero)
has a certain charm, and all the best lines, while Minerva is fairly
silly, makes some unbelievably stupid decisions and doesn't really
deserve her happy ending. Of the rest, the Marquess and the vicar have
some interesting aspects, but almost everybody else is just silly. One
would think there would be one or two people of intelligence or just
common sense inhabiting Regency London, but apparently not.
anyone looking for a Heyer substitute, this isn't really it. The author
has obviously done her research and splatters about Regency slang and
costume details with a heavy hand, but the writing has little of Heyer's
intelligence or charm. There are a few laugh out loud moments, however,
and things come together quite nicely at the end. Three stars.