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Sunday, August 19, 2018

Review: More or Less a Countess (The Somerset Sisters #2) by Anna Bradley



Print Length: 252 pages
Publisher: Lyrical Press (August 7, 2018)

From Goodreads.com: Finding a worthy husband should be simple for three beautiful debutantes in Regency London. But the Somerset sisters have a way of making it delightfully complicated...

Violet Somerset has always preferred a library to a ballroom, but to please her grandmother she agreed to one London season. With nothing to show for it but heartbreak, she's reconciled to spinsterhood. Until a notorious rogue known as the Devil of Dare requests an introduction to her timid, gentle youngest sister, Hyacinth. Violet will do anything to stop the match—even if it means posing as Hyacinth herself.

Nicholas Balfour, the Earl of Dare, is enjoying the life of a rake far too much to take a wife. But he must keep his promise to his grandmother. He'll simply choose the meekest bride he can find, install her at his estate, then carry on as before. Hyacinth sounds perfect—until he discovers that her sweet demeanor hides the tongue of a viper and the mind of a bluestocking.

As Violet's ruse threatens to unravel, however, she may find the tables turned. Soon she may have no choice but to tolerate her handsome fiancée—or fall in love with him

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My Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Let me begin by saying that although this is book number two in a series, you don't have to have read the first novel in order to enjoy this one. In fact, other than the mention of her sister (and her best friend) and the matches they made, there is nothing that would make this story hard to understand. 

I have read other stories by this author and have enjoyed all of them, but thus far this new series, to me, is not as good. Don't get me wrong the author does write a good story with strong characters, but they seem to be missing a crucial element that would drive them from "forgettable" to "wow". 

Let's begin with Violet. I wanted to like her. I'm all for a good blue-stocking woman, and a woman who writes is even better. But I found it hard to believe that she could (and would) so willingly risk her reputation (not to mention her very life) in order to obtain sketches for a book that she seemingly had no intention of ever actually publishing. 

Then there is Nick, I could sympathize with him to an extent taking on a role he never thought to possess, but to mistake one sister for another? Come on, Violet and Hyacinth are not twins, there is no reason they looked so much alike he couldn't tell them apart. I also felt that he was too quick to jump to the wrong (and worst) conclusions imaginable that much of this book could have been avoided if the pair of them could just put their pride aside. 

Now this last bit of my opinion may very well be an unpopular one, but I felt like this book had too much drama. In fact, it seemed like every time these two (once married) started to come to a mutual understanding, something would happen that would cause the other to lash out. After the majority of their marriage being this way, I must admit it got old. 

However, all things considered, I do think this story will still appeal to fans of historical romances, and I would read more from this author. 

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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                           More or Less a Countess is available from Amazon.com

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