Wednesday, August 26, 2015

New for 2015- A Lady of Esteem- Kristi Ann Hunter

 
A Hawthorne House Novella 
Bethany House, 7th July 2015, 
Kindle Edition, 159 Pages
Miss Amelia Stalwood may live in London at her absent guardian's townhouse, but she's never actually met any nobility, and instead of aristocrats, her closest friends are servants. Quite by happenstance, she's introduced to the Hawthorne family and their close family friend, Anthony, the reformed marquis of Raeburn.
They welcome her into their world, but just as she's beginning to gain some confidence and even suspect she may have caught Anthony's eye, she's blindsided by an unexpected twist in her situation accompanied by nasty rumors. Will she lose her reputation when the world that has only just accepted her turns its back on her, or will she rest in the support of the friends who've become like family and the man who's shared his faith and captured her heart?

A Lady of Esteem is an e-only novella that gives an exciting introduction to Kristi Ann Hunter's new Regency romance series about the aristocratic Hawthorne family! Includes an extended excerpt of Kristi's debut full-length novel, A Noble Masquerade.
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  I have had somewhat mixed experiences with Christian Regencies. Some have been overly mushy on the Romantic side, or implausible and silly. Others have been downright gross, with uncessary rape scene or other objectionable content, and so riddled with Americanisms that its almost impossible to take the characters seriously.

Others have been good, faithful to the style and setting and generally satisfying. This was one. Its really just a sweet, fun little story, though it does have a more serious side with the underlying message. Yet this was not delivered in a heavy-handed way.
Instead, there's plenty of good humour and a decent story about a lovable social misfit who falls for a formerly rakish Marquis (with a little help from his friends), and thier choices and challenges along the way.

The names are credible for the setting (Regency stories that have names which are clearly made up to outlandish do get to me), and the American author's knowledge of British geography and social customs seems solid. I did spot a few Americanisms (a reference to 'stepping out onto the sidewalk' amongst them- we call it the pavement), but these were not too jarring, as the characters otherwise seemed delighfully but not stereotypically British- and that's coming from a Brit.

The Romance was also well handled. Fairly light without being too mushy, sickly sweet, or just resulting in really inapproporate behaviour- for the most part. There was some kissing, but even that was not overdone.

Altogether, its a great introduction to this author. I look forward to reading her full Length novel, A Noble Masquerade. Its also free on Amazon- so well worth the effort.

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