The Gentleman of Holly Street
Will this Christmas…Change their lives again?
When self-made gentleman Freddie Walton rescued penniless Philomena Nichols at Christmas eight years ago, he never imagined that he would build his empire with her. Yet whilst they have created a life together as friends, Freddie can’t let their special connection become more than that. Not when his dangerous past continues to haunt him… But what happens when Freddie’s feelings for Philomena refuse to stay hidden?
Lotte James trained as an actor and theatre director but spent most of her life working day jobs crunching numbers whilst dreaming up stories of love and adventure. She’s thrilled to finally be writing those stories, and when she’s not scribbling on tiny pieces of paper, she can usually be found wandering the countryside for inspiration or nestling with coffee and a book.
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The Gentleman of Holly Street by Lotte R. James
Tracy’s rating: 2.5/3 of 5 stars
Series: Gentlemen of Mystery, #3
Release Date: November 29, 2022
After years of travel, Freddie Walton has finally put down roots and purchased a building to not only open his business but also as a place to live. He is inspecting the property when he comes upon a half-starved, terrified girl. He invites her in to eat and get warm, knowing that he can’t turn her away, but not realizing how this decision will ultimately change his life.
Philomena “Mena” Nichols has come a long way from the ragamuffin that was saved that December night by Freddie. She has worked hard with Freddie to make his business a success and has also worked diligently to improve herself and despite her lingering fears, has managed to do amazing things on her own.
Freddie and Mena have a complicated relationship and are often apart from each other, they are both self-made people, and both feel inferior, even though Freddie has a circle of friends in high society and is welcomed into the ton, they both think they are unworthy. Even after their relationship changes and they become lovers, they still don’t believe they are deserving of a HEA with each other and struggle with feelings of inadequacy. Especially Freddie, whose past is coming back to haunt him.
This was an odd read for me and I wonder if it was because this is the third book in the series and I didn’t read the previous books. While the idea of the book intrigued me when I started reading it, there were things that I found offputting, such as Freddie’s relationship with Lady Mary, they were just a bit too cozy for my liking, and in this era, there is no way they could spend as much time together as they did without controversy or risk to Mary’s reputation. I also wasn’t a fan of Freddie’s resistance to committing to Mena, or the fact that he knowingly hurt her. OK – I guess, I was just not a fan of Freddie in general. Overall, I thought the book had potential but was a bit too repetitive and slow-moving, and I certainly wouldn’t classify it as a “Gothic Romance”.
*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC that I requested and was provided to me by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.*