Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca on March 6th 2018
I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Goodreads
It is a truth universally acknowledgedthat a lady can do anything a man can do:backwards and in high-heeled dancing slippers.
Lady Juliana, daughter of the Earl of St. Maur, needs all the help she can get. She's running a ramshackle orphanage, London's worst slumlord has illicit designs on her, and her father has suddenly become determined to marry her off.
Enter Major Neil Wraxall, bastard son of the Marquess of Kensington, sent to assist Lady Juliana in any way he can. Lucky for her, he's handy with repairs, knows how to keep her and the orphans safe, and is a natural leader of men.
Unfortunately for both of them, the scandal that ensues from their mutual attraction is going to lead them a merry dance...
Lady Juliana has taken up residency at boys home. Major Neil Wraxall is assigned to bring her back home. What he thinks is going to be an easy job turns out to be nothing but. Juliana has fallen in love with the boys and will do anything to keep them safe. With the odds against her, Wraxall jumps in to help. Being nothing more than the illegitimate son of an Earl he feels he can do nothing more than to admire her from afar. Some long nights at the orphanage change that and Lady Juliana finds she has more to love than just the boys.
In an Oyster Shell – It was a satisfying romance that will leave your heart full of the robust characters.
The Pearls – I love a good regency but this one stands all on its own. The Lady is running an orphanage which is really beneath her station. I liked the uniqueness of this. I loved how it had less to do with society and more to do with the orphans. This paired with a man who has no station by title but has earned it by the favor of his father and his work in the war efforts makes for a great story that stands apart from all other regencies.
There were a lot of characters but there was little confusion of who was who. The boys that Juliana is looking over will steal your heart. Wraxall being able to relate to the boys and in turn work on the demons of his past was really inspiring. This is a character-driven book that left me turning page after page in earnest.
The romance was slightly forbidden which made it exotic. The turmoil of wanting what you can’t have was fairly intoxicating. The ending was more than satisfying. This could be an interesting series to continue with.
The Sand – It wasn’t a clean romance.