Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Review: My Brown-Eyed Earl by Anna Bennett

My Brown-Eyed Earl by Anna Bennett
Publication Date: October 4, 2016
Publisher: Macmillan
Amazon Link: HERE
Received From: Goodreads Giveaway

Summary (from Amazon):
William Ryder, Earl of Castletown, is at the end of his noble rope. Not only has he broken ties with his longtime mistress, his mother has publicly announced her wish for him to marry a suitable young lady—if only to help him raise the young twins in his care. Hiring a governess should solve some of Will's problems...but when he meets the candidate in question, he finds himself in an entirely new predicament.

Miss Margaret Lacey is brainy, beautiful, and, once upon a time, Will's betrothed. But she bowed out of the engagement—and, since then, has never been the same. A tragic accident robbed her of everything, and now, at age twenty-three, her marital prospects are slim to none. Penniless but not without pride, Meg convinces the vexingly handsome Will to hire her for the job. What neither of them could have expected from this arrangement, however, is an attraction that burns stronger than ever. Are these two lost souls finally ready to be schooled in the art of love?

When Meg was fifteen years old her parents declared she was to marry William, but as soon as she sees him looking at her as if she's below him and unattractive, she says he's the last man in the world she would marry, putting a halt to their engagement. Years later Meg and her siblings live with her uncle, who is struggling to take care of them, so Meg decides to get a job as a governess to help him out. Meg doesn't realize she's applying for the governess position for her ex-bethrothed's nieces, though. And William's just as surprised to see Meg after all these years, but as soon as he sees her interact with his trouble making nieces, he knows Meg's perfect for the job. The one thing he doesn't expect, though, is to be attracted to Meg. Meg also can't help feel an attraction to Will even though she knows it's wrong since he's her employer. Will they be able to put aside their past for a future together or will their differences keep them apart?

I've read many historical romance novels where the heroine is a governess for the hero and they end up falling in love, but Anna Bennett manages to make the story feel unique because of Meg and Will's past. I thought the romance between Meg and Will was well written and I felt their chemistry from the first page. I also liked Meg as a character—she was intelligent, hard-working and determined. And although I liked Will's character at the beginning of the story, I didn't like the way he looked down at Meg because of her station and used it constantly as a reason that he couldn't be with her or marry her. It was odd that they were engaged years before but that he still didn't think she was good enough to be an earl's wife, which was what made me dislike his character slightly. And although the story was predictable with few twists and turns, I thought Will's nieces and Meg made the story stand out.

Overall, I enjoyed My Brown-Eyed Earl and recommend it to readers looking for a historical romance novel with a governess storyline.



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