Mary Balogh is one of my favorite authors. I am on her email list and look forward to her books like a piece of cheesecake. Her current book The Secret Mistress is about the courtship and romance of Lady Angeline Dudley and Edward Ailsury, Earl of Heyward. I tried to like this book, but I found that I could barely get through it. Angeline though kind and sincere was just a silly young woman. She fell in love with Edward at first sight and due to his stubbornness things never seemed to work out.
She tries to help him find love with Eunice Goddard his longtime friend. When Angeline’s cousin and Edward’s former sister-law become engaged, a house party is planned with Angeline, Edward and Eunice as guests. Angeline decides to help things along for them, though it is obvious to Eunice that Angeline wants Edward for herself. Angeline decides to make Edward jealous with rakish Lord Windrow as competitor for Eunice’s love . Eunice actually falls for Lord Windrow and their romance is more interesting. Windrow finds the bluestocking Eunice charming and enjoys the game of cat and mouse that Angeline planned. Windrow convinces Eunice to marry him in a surprising and romantic interlude. Edward and Angeline finally do get together, but it was painfully predictable. The epilogue of Edward and Angeline’s later life slightly redeems the story. It pains me to give Mary Balogh such a negative review so I recommend you try any of her other books, but especially her the Simply and Huxtable series!
Thanks to Dolean and Jackie for telling me about their recent favorites!