Barbara’s rating: 3 of 5 stars
Series: Duke’s Daughters #3
Publication Date: 9/25/18
Megan Frampton is normally one of my favorite reads. I enjoyed this story, but it was mostly because of the humor of the ‘classification game’, etc. Otherwise, I thought it was a bit slow and I never came to feel involved with the heroine because I didn’t like her or relate to her. I liked the hero much better, but I found him to be more milquetoast than hero. I think the author was trying very hard to put modern standards in period dress without seeming to do so. My rating is a 3.5, but I have had a hard time deciding whether to round down to 3 or up to 4, so I guess I’ll decide once I have the review written.
Lady Ida Howlett has inattentive, uncaring and uninvolved parents. Ida is highly intelligent and loves learning – and she has no problem sharing her knowledge ad-nauseam with others. She is the youngest of five sisters. Two sisters are happily in love and married, two live at home and one, Della, has run away and they don’t know where she is. It is Ida’s dearest wish to locate Della and bring her back to London.
Bennett is the son and heir to a marquess, but he might as well be the marquess because he is the one who takes care of everything while his father is off living the high-life and spending money right and left. Bennett is a person who takes care of others – always – and before himself. Sometimes, he’d just like to chuck all of the responsibilities and run away – maybe have an adventure.
Something Bennett NEVER does is get drunk – but, he has gotten drunk tonight and has fallen asleep in someone’s carriage. The door was open and he was sleepy so he crawled in. Now, imagine his shock to awaken and find himself in a moving carriage. He repeatedly wraps on the carriage roof and finally, the carriage comes to a stop. Shock! He is several hours outside of London and the carriage is being driven by Lady Ida who has stolen the carriage and is on her way to find her sister. Since Bennett cannot let her travel alone, they set off together on an adventure. I think the book could have profited from a bit more ‘adventure’ during this part of the story, but it was a pretty staid trip.
So, as I said, I enjoyed the humor in the story but wasn’t impressed by much more. Here are some of the things that bothered me:
(1) This one really aggravated me after a while. The constant, incessant, repeated references to how smart Ida was. It was as if nobody else in the world had a brain – only Ida.
(2) Ida’s ‘brilliant’ solution for her NOT being ruined when they returned to London. It was absolutely bonkers. She had spent a week traveling totally alone with a man who was not her husband and bringing her sister back with her was going to keep her from being ruined. What?????
(3) The relationship between Ida and Bennett was just too modern. It just wouldn’t have happened that way in that time period. If you want that, then write a more modern story rather than writing a modern story and draping it in period dress.
(4) Bennett’s role in the House of Lords was mentioned a couple of times. Well – he was an heir and would NOT have been in the House of Lords. His father would be the one in the House of Lords. Doesn’t matter who is running the Marquisate, ONLY the title holder can serve in the House of Lords.
(5) Bennett’s solution to how he was going to cut back on his duties and his reaction to his father’s objections were ridiculous. Of course, his father could take over the running of the Marquisate – he is the Marquess after all. It doesn’t matter that Bennett has been running things and signing everything – he still isn’t the Marquess.
(6) The wedding vows. I’m certainly not an expert here, but I don’t believe that, in that time period, they would have been allowed the change the vows. I believe those were dictated by the Church of England.
(7) It was hard to get a feel for a timeline since few if any, dates or periods were given in the book. Even the epilogue didn’t tell us how long after the marriage it took place. Of course, I guess that is one way to eliminate timeline errors – just don’t have one.
(8) The Epilogue. I love epilogues and think every romance should have one. However, I didn’t see any point in having this epilogue at all other than to – maybe – set up the idea that Della will be the heroine in the next book.
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