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Saturday, April 30, 2016

Review: To Win a Lady's Heart (Landon Sisters #1) by Ingrid Hahn


Print Length: 232 pages
Publisher: Entangled: Scandalous (March 21, 2016)

From Goodreads.com: He has secretly admired her from afar…

England, 1811. When John Merrick, the Earl of Corbeau, is caught in a locked storeroom with Lady Grace, he has but one choice—marry her. He cannot bear to tarnish any woman’s reputation, least of all Lady Grace’s.

She has lost everything but her dignity…

Lady Grace Landon will do anything to help her mother and sisters, crushed and impoverished by her father’s disgrace. But throwing herself into the arms of her dearest friend’s older brother to trap him in marriage? Never.

Corbeau needs to prove that he loves her, despite her father’s misdeeds. After years of being an object of scorn, not even falling in love with Corbeau alters Lady Grace’s determination to not bring her disrepute upon another. However, if they don’t realize that the greatest honor is love given freely without regard to society’s censure, they stand to lose far more than they ever imagined.
 


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My Rating: 3 stars out of 5
This story has left me with a lot of mixed feelings. To begin with, I adored John AKA Corbeau. He was a sort of unexpected twist on the usual "hero". In private he was articulate and witty - in public - he was secretly battling an anxiety disorder that I feel is not often discussed in this sort of novel. It was interesting to see how he balanced the two - putting on a perfectly respectable persona when amongst people (even when he felt he couldn't). I also enjoyed the fact that he was the kind of Earl that would give his stable-hands a week off at Christmas, not only so they could spend it with their own families - but for the added benefit that he himself could tend to the horses. He was certainly my favorite character, and that was before he made a real effort to court Grace. 

And speaking of Grace.... I did not care for her at all. To begin with, the author presents her in a certain way "due to the scandal surrounding her father's misdeeds". However - the reader never really learns what those misdeeds are. Yes he bankrupted the family to the point where they had to rely on the charity of others, but that is no different than any of the other stories I've read and those young ladies never acted in the same way that Grace did. If the story is to be believed - society looked so far down on them for that reason alone, that she felt associating herself with the Earl would not only drag him down, but his sister as well. All this for gambling? Seriously? I was expecting something a lot more sordid than that. 

Overlooking that little bit of information, Grace tends to come across as very wishy-washy, sending mixed signals at every turn. One moment she's contemplating accepting his proposal and acting upon the feelings she has, and the next she's hurting him with her desire to "protect" him. She even goes so far as to have relations with him before marriage "just to have that one night".

Overall, I felt the romance was really lacking - however - the story was interesting enough that I did finish the story, and I feel the things I may not have liked about this story would not keep someone else from enjoying it.

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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 To Win a Lady's Heart is available from Amazon.com

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