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Friday, April 1, 2016

Review: How to Please a Lady (The Lost Heiresses #2) by Jane Goodger


Print Length: 234 pages
Publisher: Kensington Publishing (March 29, 2016)

From Goodreads.com: The Lost Heiresses

Run though they might, love will find them…

Lady Rose Dunford is shocked--and titillated--by the number of female visitors coming and going from her mysterious new neighbor's Manhattan brownstone. Recently widowed by the death of her very sweet, but not very exciting husband, Rose finds it difficult to imagine just what the attraction could be. 


And then she meets the bachelor in question. Not only is Charlie Avery dashing and outrageously good looking--she knows him! He is none other than the man who once helped her escape the dreary matchmaking plans of her father, the man she once dreamed she could love. Can Charlie's presence next door be an accident? Or has he come to show her everything he has learned about…

How To Please A Lady

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My Rating: 3 stars out of 5

WARNING: This book is recommended for mature audiences only due to sexual content (that happens outside of marriage). If this is not your cup of tea, then this book may not be for you. However, you can just as easily skip those scenes and not miss any of the overall plot.

Honestly, I don't know quite what to say about this novel. I feel like the writing was solid, and the plot believable enough, but I feel like there were certain things that have could have been tweaked, or better hashed out that would have made this story more enjoyable. 

To begin with, the characters were unconventional - Rose came from an upper class English family while Charlie started out as her family's head groom. Perhaps this explains why Rose spends the entirety of the book coming across as snobbish and it never seems as though she really sees Charlie as her equal. Even after he makes a name for himself, she still seems to hold herself to a higher level than she does him. In fact, she uses him. A LOT. And that made her very unlikable. 

Perhaps I should back up a tiny bit. When Rose originally "uses" Charlie it is to escape a desperate situation. She is about to be married off to a much older man who is nothing short of vulgar and despicable. He essentially "forces" Rose to perform fellatio on him once and when she appeals to her Mother for help and expresses her desire to end the engagement, her Mother denies her. I'm sure had Rose actually TOLD someone - her Mother or her older brothers perhaps - just what had occurred between her and her fiance, they would have done something to end it. 

But once she leaves for America with him, she then she uses him to teach her how to kiss, and she essentially makes his feelings for her run deeper, but then once they reach America? She cannot even consider to possibility that her English "title" means nothing and that Charlie would make the perfect husband for her. She instead turns to a man who she knows cannot truly be what she wants. As time goes by, and they re-establish their connection, she eventually uses him again. To have sex with her. In order to seem experienced in the matter when she eventually re-marries. Tell me how this is supposed to endear a character to readers? 

I feel like with all of that, the author could have done more to tone down Rose's personality or have the characters actually be able to get their feelings across in a way that didn't result in one or the other of them having their feelings hurt over and over again. I also wish, maybe less time would have been spent on them and their constant back and forth of hurt feelings and maybe we could have had a chapter or two dealing with her and her husband. He seemed like an afterthought almost, and while we do understand her reasoning for marrying him, we don't get to see their actual marriage and how they made it work. 

Aside from that, I did enjoy this novel. I especially liked how we were able to go back in time and see Charlie and Rose when the first knew each other. That backstory was a good portion of this story and honestly probably a little more enjoyable than their actual relationship. 

Overall, I would still recommend this novel to those who enjoy a good historical romance. 


DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.

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How to Please a Lady is available from Amazon.com

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