To round off the week, it’s my stop on the blog tour for Lord of Worth, a sweet Georgian romance!
Book: Lord of Worth by Philippa Jane Keyworth
Publication date: 28th May 2022
Ownership: E-ARC sent free of charge via Rachel’s Random Resources. All opinions my own.
London 1776: Lord Worth is busying himself restoring his family fortunes and burying any feelings he still harbours for the woman who rejected his proposal.
The fact that the lady in question—Lady Rebecca Fairing—happens to be his sister’s best friend, his niece’s godmother, and present at every Societal gathering of consequence is… unfortunate.
Meanwhile Rebecca fears she made the wrong decision in rejecting James Worth, but when he assures her he won’t be renewing his proposal, she is forced to accept her choice. It doesn’t take long for the eligible Lord Worth to attract other suitors, among them Lady Sophia, daughter to Society’s most notorious gossip, Lady Goring.
Rebecca knows she must step aside and allow James to find happiness, but when she senses all is not as it seems in the Goring family, she can’t help but intervene.
As James and Rebecca work together to unearth Societal secrets, deal with scheming matriarchs, and face villainous highwaymen, they find themselves more in each other’s company than ever before.
Will they continue to bury their feelings for one another, or will they finally realise what it means to love?
Normally when it comes to historical romance the majority of books I come across are either set in the Regency, the 1890s, or way back in medieval times, so I was really intrigued by this Georgian setting. For the most part, the society rules will be familiar to a Regency reader, but the fashion of the 1770s is much more intricate, and for those who enjoy dress details, there are some wonderfully vivid descriptions here (plus a glossary of terms at the back, in case some of them are unfamiliar). There are also fun moments of historical flavour, like a visit to the zoo in the Tower of London!
This is the third book in the Ladies of Worth series, and while you can read it as a standalone, as I did, there seems to be stronger continuity between books than in many historical romance series, so it may be a good idea to start at the beginning if you want everyone’s full backstories! James and Rebecca have a lot of history between them that I assumed has been glimpses in earlier books; here their relationship is very strained and awkward to begin with, as Rebecca has rejected a proposal from James before the book starts, believing that he showed no signs of loving her. However, this is of course because he’s far too deeply in love with her to act normally, so they both spend a large part of the book convinced the other has no interest in them! It’s a fun dynamic for a second chance romance, to have each party feel rejected and need to build up confidence to try again. I really enjoyed how obvious it was to everyone apart from them that they were meant for each other!
I was surprised to find that actually, Rebecca and James don’t spend very much time together on the page – this is definitely more of a classic social novel in a Heyer vein than a modern two-hander romance. We occasionally get other viewpoint characters too, and the main plot revolves around the various flirtations and entanglements of their friends and family, with the romance kind of bubbling along in the background. It’s not my typical romance style, but it was a very enjoyable glimpse into the social whirl of the 1770s, and if you’re a fan of excruciatingly polite putdowns, you’ll definitely be happy – there are so many amusingly pointed conversations!
Lord of Worth is perfect for readers looking for a sweet romance set in an unusual era, and anyone who enjoys classic-feeling stories of a Society season. Three and a half cats!
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